Innovative educators seek new answers to an age-old question: “What are the best practices to improve learning?” An important research study in the Bay Area is focusing on specific methods in order to help learners everywhere.
Beginning in January 2016, Sea Crest served as the first K-8 school to partake in this progressive study running out of the Educational Neuroscience program at the Mission Bay UCSF Center for Integrative Neurosciences. The research study is led by Dr. Melina Uncapher, whose work aims to bolster student self-efficacy through evidence-based learning practices.
Students who opted into the study piloted an iPad-based “brain game” called Adaptive Cognitive Evaluation (ACE) in order to assess baseline executive function such as working memory, attention, and inhibitory responses.
Sea Crest students are currently piloting EVO, a “prescriptive video game” and cognitive intervention developed by Akili in collaboration with the Gazzaley Research Group at UCSF. Students are looking forward to playing more of ACE in the fall, in addition to trying out the Brain-Body-Trainer (BBT), a synergistic cognitive and physical training intervention currently in development at the Gazzaley Neuroscape Lab.
Through this active research, UCSF cognitive neuroscientists will be able to examine academic achievement across different grade levels. They are assessing individual student achievement and how it corresponds with executive functioning skills. This work will inform researchers about the process underlying student learning, providing us with a more nuanced understanding of how students’ math and reading skills map over to executive functioning.
In partnership with organizations such as UCSF, Sea Crest is working to help catalyze education innovation.