THE GIBSON INSTITUTE OF COGNITIVE RESEARCH
The Research behind our Programs
Want to know more about the extensive research backing our programs?
We are dedicated to improving and enhancing our cognitive enhancement programs. Our research institution, The Gibson Institute of Cognitive Research, is a world leader in cognitive research.
"We're taking cognitive training research to a new level for Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI), age-related memory loss, ADHD, dyslexia, speech and language disorders, and learning disabilities."
Get a copy of the latest Research Results and Client Outcomes Report.
How we use our successes to ensure yours.
Here are just some of the most significant research, studies (some with and some without control groups), peer reviewed articles and developments related to our work in cognitive testing and one-on-one cognitive training:
You or your child may or may not see the same improvements seen in these studies.
Moore, A.L., Carpenter, D., James, R., Miller, T., Moore, J., Disbrow, E., & Ledbetter, C. (2020). Neuroimaging and Neuropsychological Outcomes Following Clinician-Delivered Cognitive Training for Six Patients with Mild Brain Injury: A Multiple Case Study. Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, 14(229), 1-15. https://doi.org/10.3389/fnhum.2020.00229
In this study, we explored the statistical and clinical significance of cognitive changes and transfer of training to real-life functioning following 60 hours of LearningRx training for six patients with mild traumatic brain injury (TBI) or non-traumatic acquired brain injury (ABI). We also explored changes in functional connectivity and neural correlates of cognitive test gains following the training using fMRI. All cognitive test scores showed improvement with statistically significant changes on five of the seven measures (long-term memory, processing speed, reasoning, auditory processing, and overall IQ score). The mean change in IQ score was 20 points. Patients reported improvements in cognition, mood, social identity, work and school performance, and Instrumental Activities of Daily Living (IADLs). With MRI, we documented significant region-to-region changes in connectivity following cognitive training including those involving the cerebellum and cerebellar networks. We also found significant correlations between changes in IQ score and change in white matter integrity of bilateral corticospinal tracts (CST) and the left uncinate fasciculus.
Moore, A., & Ledbetter, C. (2020). Ethical considerations and lessons learned in a randomized controlled trial of ThinkRx cognitive training for children with learning disabilities and/or ADHD. SAGE Research Methods Cases. doi:10.4135/9781529734072
In a randomized controlled trial, we examined the efficacy of ThinkRx, a clinician-delivered cognitive training program delivered to children with learning disabilities and/or ADHD. In this case review, we discuss the ethical considerations for using a waitlist control group instead of a sham intervention in lengthy behavioral interventions with a vulnerable population. We describe the control group options we considered and why we selected waitlist controls. We report our quantitative and qualitative outcomes from two articles published on this study including statistically significant differences in eight of the nine measures, clinically significant changes in IQ score for the ADHD subset, and parent-reported improvements in self-esteem, self-discipline, cooperative behaviors, and school performance. Link to author’s copy
James, R., Moore, A.L., Carpenter, D., Miller, T., & Ledbetter, C. (2019). Feasibility of a Functional Medicine Approach to Slowing Clinical Cognitive Decline in Patients Over Age 55: A Multiple Case Study Report. OBM Integrative and Complementary Medicine, 4(3). doi: 10.21926/obm.icm.1903054
This study examined a multifaceted anti-neuroinflammatory intervention that included physical exercise, mental exercise, grain-free/sugar-free diet, anti-inflammatory nutritional supplements, sleep optimization, and stress management within the context of a functional medicine practice for five patients with varying levels of cognitive impairment. In a prospective chart review, we examined impact measures including assessment of (1) cognitive skills, (2) brain connectivity, and (3) daily functioning. Three of the five patients were no longer classified as cognitively impaired, while a fourth patient improved from moderately-to-severely impaired to mildly impaired. Patients reported improved memory, mental clarity, and outlook on life. fMRI analyses revealed changes in brain connectivity and efficiency. The current study provides preliminary support for and feasibility of the use of a multi-component approach to slowing cognitive decline. View PDF Link to article
Moore, A.L., & Ledbetter, C. (2019). The Promise of Clinician-Delivered Cognitive Training for Children Diagnosed with ADHD. Journal of Mental Health and Clinical Psychology, 3(3), 3-8. doi: 10.29245/2578-2959/2019/3.1180
Mainstream approaches to treating Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder in children include stimulant medication such as methylphenidate and behavior therapy that target deficits in attention as well as inappropriate behaviors but do not sufficiently address the multiple cognitive deficits associated with the disorder. Deficits beyond attention have been identified in ADHD including working memory, long-term memory, and processing speed. As key elements of cognition and intelligence that contribute to thinking and learning, these are critical deficits found in children with ADHD that must be addressed. In this review, we discuss existing research on cognitive training interventions for ADHD and evaluate their ability to target these multiple cognitive deficits as well as their ability to promote self-efficacy, social cognition, and motivation during training. We describe research on LearningRx, a clinician-delivered cognitive training intervention and suggest that human delivery enhances motivation and promotes social cognition and self-efficacy while strengthening weak cognitive skills associated with ADHD in children. Link to article.
Moore, A.L., Carpenter, D.M., Miller, T.M., & Ledbetter, C., (2019). ThinkRx Cognitive Training for Adults over Age 50: Clinician-Caregiver Partners in Delivery as Effective as Clinician-Only Delivery. Psychology and Neuroscience. (Online first version) doi: 10.1037/pne0000162
The aim of the study was to evaluate differences in cognitive outcomes and self-reported real-life improvements between two methods of delivering the ThinkRx cognitive training intervention: professional delivery solely by a clinician versus a partnership model where a caregiver or spouse delivers half of the intervention at home. The sample included 292 participants ranging in age from 51 to 95 with subjective memory or attention complaints. Participants completed an average of 79 training hours. The results showed no significant differences between delivery methods on any of the cognitive skills measured, and few remarkable differences in self-reported real-life improvements. Both delivery methods resulted in significant pretest to post-test gains across all six cognitive skills measured including working memory, long-term memory, processing speed, visual processing, auditory processing, and fluid reasoning, as well as self-reported improvements in five key areas: mood, memory, cognitive efficiency, life application skills, and focus/attention. Caveats include the need for caregivers to be motivated enough and cognitively sharp enough themselves to help deliver the program. (Link to author’s copy of the article)
Moore, A.L., Carpenter, D.M., Miller, T.M., & Ledbetter, C. (2018). Comparing Two Methods of Delivering ThinkRx Cognitive Training to Children Ages 8-14: A Randomized Controlled Trial of Equivalency. Journal of Cognitive Enhancement. (Online first version). doi.org/10.1007/s41465-018-0094-z
In a randomized controlled trial assessing equivalence of parallel groups of children ages 8-14, we compared cognitive outcomes between a group who received 60 hours of ThinkRx cognitive training delivered one-on-one by a clinician (n = 20) versus a group of children who received 30 hours of ThinkRx delivered by a clinician and the remaining 30 hours through supervised digital training procedures in a computer lab (n = 18). Results showed no significant differences between groups on tests of working memory, logic and reasoning, auditory processing, visual processing, processing speed, or overall IQ score. Results were significantly different on the test of long-term memory. These results suggest that both delivery models are nearly equivalent delivery methods of ThinkRx cognitive training for children. This study controlled for placebo effects because both groups attended the same number of sessions and spent the same number of hours in training (60) with an adult present. Finally, this was a single-blind study. The participants did not know there was a difference in training methods. Read the article (Link to results poster)
Moore, A.L., Carpenter, D.M., Ledbetter, C., & Miller, T.M. (2018). Clinician-delivered cognitive training for children with attention problems: Transfer effects on cognitive and behavior from the ThinkRx randomized controlled trial. Neuropsychiatric Disease and Treatment, 14, 1671-1683. doi: 10.2147/NDT.S165418
In a randomized controlled study, we examined the effects of a one-on-one cognitive training program on memory, visual and auditory processing, processing speed, reasoning, attention, overall IQ score, and behavior for students ages 8-14 with ADHD. Results included greater pretest to post-test change scores on all variables for the treatment group versus the control group with statistically significant differences noted in working memory, long-term memory, logic and reasoning, auditory processing, and IQ score. Qualitative outcomes included far transfer to cognition and behavior as reported by participants, parents, and clinicians. Read the article Link to video abstract: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Tso9xhKRkao
Ledbetter, C., & Moore, A. (2018). Neuroimaging outcomes of a cognitive rehabilitation training program. Journal of Neuroimaging, 28(2), 225-233. doi: 10.1111/jon.12507
To investigate if aberrant brain connectivity and changes in brain connectivity (a neuroimaging marker of neuroplasticity), were evident prior to and after completion of a robust cognitive training program, a series of case studies were carried out in subjects with varying degrees of traumatic brain injuries (n = 5) and cognitive impairment (n = 5). MR exams were acquired on all subjects prior to and upon completion of the ThinkRx cognitive training program. In addition to MR exams, all subjects completed pre-post neuropsychological testing (WJ-IV) and condition-specific rating scales. For all cases, neuropsychological testing and qualitative outcomes measures increased, supporting that the robustness of the training program held for each imaged case study. Normalization of DMN connectivity, including decreased hyperconnectivity and reoccurrence of anticorrelated activity, was evident in the most severe TBI case. At the group level, significant training-induced changes in neural connectivity were identified. Read the abstract: Neuroimaging Outcomes for TBI and MCI_J of Neuroimaging
Moore, A.L., & Miller, T. (2018). Reliability and validity of the revised Gibson Test of Cognitive Skills, a computer-based test battery for assessing cognition across the lifespan. Psychology Research and Behavior Management, 11, 25-35. doi:10.2147/PRBM.S152781
This study evaluated the validity and reliability of the revised Gibson Test of Cognitive Skills, a computer-based battery of tests measuring short-term memory, long-term memory, processing speed, logic and reasoning, visual processing, as well as auditory processing and Word Attack skills. The sample for the study included 2,737 participants ranging in age from 5 to 85. Results indicated strong sources of evidence of validity and reliability for the test, including test-retest reliability coefficients ranging from .69-.91, split-half reliability coefficients ranging from .87 to .91, and concurrent validity coefficients ranging from .53 to .93. The Gibson Test of Cognitive Skills -2 is a reliable and valid tool for assessing cognition in the general population across the lifespan. Link to article: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5813948/ Link to video abstract: https://youtu.be/qFMois2UyCY
Jedlicka, E. (2017). LearningRx cognitive training for children and adolescents ages 5-18: Effects on academic skills, behavior, and cognition. Frontiers in Education, 2(62). doi: 10.3389/feduc.2017.00062
This study with 178 students ages 5-18 investigated whether ThinkRx and ReadRx clinician-delivered cognitive training programs reduced academic difficulties and oppositional behavior for school-age children with learning struggles compared to a control group. Results indicated there were statistically significant differences overall between the intervention groups and the control group on all measures of academic difficulties. Both intervention groups saw a reduction in academic difficulty ratings following training while the control group saw an increase in academic difficulty during a comparable time interval. Both intervention groups achieved statistically significant changes on objective cognitive test measures as well. Link to study: https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/feduc.2017.00062/full
Christina Ledbetter, PhD, Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center; Amy Lawson Moore, PhD, Gibson Institute of Cognitive Research; and Tanya Mitchell, Chief Research Officer of LearningRx, 2017
The results of a study published in Frontiers in Psychology highlight the benefits of LearningRx’s ThinkRx one-on-one cognitive training program in improving cognitive skills in soldiers with moderate to severe traumatic brain injury (TBI) and acquired brain injury (ABI).
In a chart review of a pilot study conducted with soldiers in a warrior transition unit (WTU) at a large Army base in the United States, researchers found statistically significant improvements in IQ score, long-term memory, processing speed, auditory processing and fluid reasoning with very large effect sizes. Gains were also noted in working memory and visual processing. Clinically significant changes in multiple cognitive skills and IQ scores were noted across cases, indicating overall recovery or improvement effects from the intervention. Also noteworthy were the self-reported transfer of training effects to improvements in confidence, perseverance, attention and memory.
The study was led by Christina Ledbetter, PhD, Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center; Amy Lawson Moore, PhD, Gibson Institute of Cognitive Research; and Tanya Mitchell, Chief Research Officer of LearningRx.
“Overall, eight of the 10 participants included in the analysis could be classified as ‘recovered’ and an additional two participants could be classified as ‘improved’ given their Reliable Change Index scores,” explains Dr. Moore. “Although this was a pilot study, these results are consistent with prior research on LearningRx and suggest that the ThinkRx cognitive training program may be a viable intervention for targeting the cognitive skill deficits associated with brain injury.”
The full study, “Cognitive effects of ThinkRx cognitive rehabilitation training for eleven soldiers with brain injury: A retrospective chart review,” can be found at: http://journal.frontiersin.org/article/10.3389/fpsyg.2017.00825/full?&utm_source=Email_to_authors_&utm_medium=Email&utm_content=T1_11.5e1_author&u
Carpenter, D., Ledbetter, C., & Moore, A.L. (2016). LearningRx cognitive training effects in children ages 8-14: A randomized controlled study. Applied Cognitive Psychology. doi: 10.1002/acp.3257
In a randomized controlled study, the effects of a one-on-one cognitive training program on IQ, memory, visual and auditory processing, processing speed, reasoning, and attention for students ages 8-14 were examined. Participants were randomly assigned to either an experimental group to complete 60 hours of cognitive training or to a wait-list control group. The purpose of the study was to examine changes in general intelligence and individual cognitive skills after completing cognitive training with ThinkRx, a LearningRx program. Results showed statistically significant differences between groups on all outcome measures except for attention. Implications, limitations, and suggestions for future research are examined. See the results of the study.
Carpenter, D., Ledbetter, C., & Moore, A. (2015). LearningRx cognitive training effects in children ages 8-14: A randomized controlled study. Manuscript submitted for peer review.
In a randomized controlled study, the effects of a one-on-one cognitive training programme on IQ, memory, visual and auditory processing, processing speed, reasoning, and attention for students ages 8-14 were examined. Participants were randomly assigned to either an experimental group to complete 60 hours of cognitive training or to a wait-list control group. The purpose of the study was to examine changes in general intelligence and individual cognitive skills after completing cognitive training with ThinkRx, a LearningRx program. Results showed statistically significant differences between groups on all outcome measures except for attention. Implications, limitations, and suggestions for future research are examined. See the results of the study.
Moore, A. (2015). Achievement Outcomes for LearningRx Students: Math and Reading Achievement Before and After Cognitive Training.
This report summarizes the analysis of reading and math achievement outcomes for more than 6,000 students who completed a ReadRx or MathRx training program at LearningRx between 2008 and 2014. ReadRx students made statistically significant gains on tests of Word Attack, Spelling Sounds, Sound Awareness, and Passage Comprehension. The mean gain across reading achievement tests was 3.6 years. MathRx students made statistically significant gains on tests of Math Fluency, Applied Problems, and Quantitative Concepts. The mean gain across math achievement tests was 3.3 years. In a subset of students who provided state achievement test results, 91% percent of the students who completed the ReadRx program showed improvement on state reading achievement tests after the intervention. See the results of the study.
Moore, A. (2015). LearningRx Training and IQ Gains.
This presentation reports the changes in IQ from before and after LearningRx training of more than 18,000 students between 2008 and 2015. The average IQ before training was 97 and the average IQ after training was 111, resulting in an average IQ gain of 14 points. The presentation also reports on a subset of 40 students with double baseline testing, revealing a decline in IQ between the time of diagnosis and beginning LearningRx training and then a dramatic increase in IQ following LearningRx training.See the results of the study.
Hill, O.W., Zewelanji, S., & Faison, O. (2015). The Efficacy of the LearningRx Cognitive Training Program: Modality and Transfer Effects. Journal of Experimental Education: Learning, Instruction, and Cognition. doi: 10.1080/00220973.2015.1065218. Available at http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/00220973.2015.1065218
This paper describes two studies testing the efficacy of the LearningRx one-on-one cognitive training program and its computer-based version (Brainskills) in laboratory and school settings. Study 1 tested Brainskills in a laboratory setting with 322 middle school students. Paired t-tests revealed significant gains on all cognitive measures and math performance after 3 weeks of training. Study 2, a randomized control study, included 225 high school students randomly assigned to one of three conditions: LearningRx, Brainskills, or study hall (control) in a school setting for a 15-week training period. Univariate ANCOVAs revealed significantly higher scores for the treatment groups compared with controls on working memory, logic and reasoning, and three of four math attitude measures but not for math performance.
Gibson, K., Carpenter, D.M., Moore, A.L., & Mitchell, T. (2015). Training the brain to learn: Beyond vision therapy. Vision Development and Rehabilitation, 1(2), 120-129. Retrieved from http://www.covd.org/?page=VDR
The purpose of this study was to investigate the effectiveness of the comprehensive cognitive training program, ThinkRx. Sixty-one children (ages 6-18) were given pretest and post-test cognitive assessments. Thirty-one students completed a 24-week cognitive training program in a LearningRx center. A matched control group of thirty children did not receive training. Multiple regression analyses indicated that treatment group membership was a statistically significant predictor of outcomes in long-term memory, logic and reasoning, working memory, processing speed, auditory processing, and Word Attack. The treatment group realized significantly greater gains in six of seven cognitive measures.
Controlled Study on LearningRx
In collaboration with Dick Carpenter, Ph.D., of the University of Colorado-Colorado Springs, LearningRx conducted a control group study to test the effects of LearningRx training on 61 clients ages 6 to 16. The study, titled “Training the Brain to Learn: Beyond Vision Therapy,” was published in the peer-reviewed journal Vision Development and Rehabilitation. Click here to download a copy of the article. It can also be found on the journal website here.
Doctoral Dissertation Examines the Profiles of Cognitive Trainers Associated with Success for Students
Dr. Amy Moore studied characteristics of 150 cognitive trainers that predicted outcomes for 1,195 clients with and without ADHD. After examining the predictive value of trainer personality, degree level, degree field, certification level, and pre-hire cognitive screening score on client gains in long-term memory, working memory, processing speed, and general intelligence, she found that no trainer profile held practical significance. Dr. Moore concluded that the intervention itself may be more important than the characteristics of the person delivering it. Read the dissertation.
Doctoral Dissertation Examines Real-Life Benefits of Cognitive Training
Dr. Edward Jedlicka used an observational survey completed by parents to evaluate whether LearningRx brain training produced noticeable, real-life improvements in their children, especially in the areas of cognitive skills, academic success, and oppositional behavior. Read the dissertation.
Pilot TBI Program with Washington State Department of Veterans Affairs
LearningRx, in partnership with the WA State Department of Veterans Affairs, provided brain training to 15 soldiers with traumatic brain injuries in an effort to regain or improve brain skills impaired as a result of their injuries. See the results of the study.
Doctoral Dissertation Examines Impact of One-on-One Brain Training on Intelligence and Academics
Dr. Alicia Luckey studied the impact of LearningRx brain training on GIA, memory, and reading in clients with ADHD, clients with dyslexia, and clients who were not reported to have any type of disability. Read the dissertation.
Effectiveness of LearningRx Among Students in the Lowest Quartile
Doctoral Student Alicia J. Luckey, M.A., Educational Psychology, Arizona State University, examined the effect of LearningRx training on 2,080 clients who completed programs in 2006. She focused on clients whose before-training scores fell in the lowest 25%. Read the report.
Independent Analysis of Test Results from 1,265 LearningRx Clients
Roxana Marachi, P.D., Assistant Professor, Department of Child & Adolescent Development at California State University, Northridge, analyzed the pre-training and post-training scores of 1,265 LearningRx clients who participated in the program in 2005. Read her analysis.
Doctoral Dissertation Examines the Effects of LearningRx on Memory in Adults with Traumatic Brain Injury
Dr. Poonam Ishanpara analyzed the pre-test and post-test scores of 39 adults with traumatic brain injury (TBI). Her results indicated statistically-significant differences in long-term memory, short-term memory, and working memory after LearningRx training. Read the dissertation.
The following white papers examine a variety of topics related to brain science, and are written by researchers and other professionals. For example, one of the authors, Dr. Lori Bryan, holds a Ph.D. in Neuroscience from the University of Pennsylvania and has more than 15 years of experience in scientific writing, including writing more than 25 peer-reviewed publications, abstracts, and presentations in neuroscience, cancer biology, and aging.
You or your child may or may not see the same improvements described in these papers.