03
November
2021
|
12:43
Europe/London

Participants required for study on what makes ‘brain training’ successful?

As part of her PhD study, Samantha Booth is looking for individuals to take part in a pilot study investigating the determinants of ‘brain training’ success. She is looking for a small number of individuals to take part in the initial run.

Participation would involve completing 16 online ‘brain training’ sessions (i.e. a programme of regular cognitive activities). The online tasks are all computer-based and are designed to measure ‘working memory’ (the ability to hold information in mind for a short period of time) and reasoning performance.

Experience with computers is not required as the tasks only require a simple button press or mouse click response, with clear instructions provided beforehand.

Each of the 16 sessions will be completed on a different day. You would be asked to complete these sessions following a fixed schedule. The schedule that you will follow depends on which group you are randomly allocated to during your first session. It is very important that you follow your given schedule throughout the training.

  • Schedule A: The 16 sessions will be spaced over 8 weeks. You will perform 2 sessions a week for 8 weeks. The 2 sessions per week will be spaced 2 days apart. For example, you could decide to do Monday and Wednesday each week. Or, Thursday and Saturday each week etc. You must stick to the same schedule each week. We ask that you try and perform each session at a similar time of day wherever possible.
  • Schedule B: The 16 sessions will be spaced over 4 weeks. You will perform 4 sessions a week for 4 weeks. The 4 sessions per week will be performed on consecutive days. You can choose which consecutive days to perform the training. For example, you could decide to complete the sessions on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday each week. Or, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday each week etc. You must stick to the same schedule each week. We ask that you try and perform each session at a similar time of day wherever possible.

Each session will last approximately 20 minutes (though two sessions will last ~40-55 minutes). You will be reimbursed for your time (Love2Shop e-voucher).

For the study participants must:

  • Provide informed consent.
  • Be aged 55 years or above.
  • Have normal or corrected-to-normal vision.
  • Be a fluent English-speaker.

Due to the nature of this study, the following exclusion criteria have been specified:

  • Severe non-correctable visual impairments (as the computer-based tasks require you to be able to read text presented on a monitor either with or without glasses).
  • Colour blindness.
  • History of alcohol or substance abuse or dependency.
  • History of neurological conditions such as Mild Cognitive Impairment, Dementia, Parkinson’s Disease etc.
  • History of psychiatric conditions such as depression (if not in remission) or schizophrenia etc.

If you are interested in taking part or finding out more information please email samantha.booth@manchester.ac.uk.

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