NASET News Alert

Brain Stimulation for Children with Learning Difficulties?

September 07, 2017

Applying a brain stimulation method, which was previously suggested to enhance mathematical learning in healthy adults, may improve the performance of children with mathematical learning difficulties, according to an exploratory study by researchers from the universities of Oxford and Cambridge. The early stage, small-scale study, which has been published in Nature's open access journal Scientific Reports, involved twelve children between the ages of eight and eleven with learning difficulties in mathematics. The study took place at Fairley House, a specialist day school for children with specific learning difficulties in London. After careful safety screening, the children were split into two groups of six. One group wore a cap attached to a light, battery-operated device through which painless low electrical current was applied over the left and right areas on the forehead, above regions of the brain called the dorsolateral prefrontal cortices. This region has been highlighted to play a role in mathematical learning. The method of stimulation, which is known as transcranial random noise stimulation (tRNS), was applied in nine 20-minute sessions over 5 weeks. Read More

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