Synthesis of the Evaluation of Most Popular Brain Training Programs

This entry is part 3 of 3 in the series Digitalized Brain Training Programs

As more and more brain training programs become available, it is also becoming increasingly difficult for the user to make informed choices in selecting a particular program over the other options, because the field of technology-mediated cognitive training is so new, there are no standards available to provide quality indicators for the training programs. Some brain training providers are taking the initiative to evaluate their training programs. Although critics have argued that most of these evaluation have credibility problems and lack rigor, yet they still establish some helpful preliminary baseline information. Summary of the key elements included in these evaluations are shown below.                       

Table 2. Evaluation of Most Popular Brain Training Programs                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      

Study research references Interventions Duration Findings
(Shatil, 2013) Cognifit – brain training program Training scheduled 3 times weekly for 16 weeks; total training time 32 hours arranged in 48 minutes sessions Cognitive training is effective in improving cognitive performance.
(Tarpin-Bernard, Croisile, n.d.) HAPPYneuron -Training cognitive functions: memory, attention, language, executive function and visual-spatial skills. Each of the 37 games was played 15 times over 90 days Gender and education level were not predictors of achievement.People with higher cognitive skills deficit train more regularly, and benefit more from training.

There is a positive relationship between training intensity and cognitive skills improvements.

There was no observable skills regression.

Training effectiveness can be maximized by playing 30-40 minute sessions, 3 to 5 days a week over a 90 day period.

(Croisile, B.; Reilhac, G.; Bélier, Sandrine.; Tarpin-Bernard; Noir, 2008) HAPPYneuron -Brain training to improve memory, reactivity, decision-making, shared attention, and concentration skills required for safe driving. One month – time spent not specified Brain training improves the efficiency of all the cognitive mechanisms required when driving, except decision-making and shared attention.
(Godde, Noack; Windisch; Voelcker-Jacobs, n.d.) HAPPYneuron -Brain training to promote employability through skills transfer 16 training session of 45 minutes duration over 31 days 

 

 

Cognitive training can facilitate the transfer of skills needed to regain employability.
(PositScience, 2013) Drive Sharp brain training exercises and test 3 times a week for 20 minutes at a time Cognitive training can expand useful field of vision, reduce crash risk by 50% and reduce the time needed to mobilize a car in motion.
(Lumosity, 2013) Lumosity – Brain training to enhance memory, speed, attention, flexibility and problem solving. More training is better as benefits accumulate with practice Training results in long-lasting improvements.Training can improve academic performance.

Training transfers to multiple measures of cognitive performance.

(LearningRx, 2011) The training program includes cognitive skills training exercises to improve processing speed, visual processing, logic and reasoning, working memory, long-term memory, attention, and basic auditory processing skills. 6 months one-to-one training 

Online training being tested

Training improves cognitive skills.Training results in average 15% augmentation in IQ.

Training improves reading up to 2.9 years.

In 2012, SharpBrains conducted a market survey to assess users’ satisfaction of the most popular brain-training programs. The survey was focused on six specific elements: (1) popularity; (2) ease of use; (3) engaging; (4) desired results; (5) appropriateness of pricing; (6) value for money. The results are displayed below. The five most popular brain-training programs as perceived by the survey respondents were Brain Games, BrainHQ, Cogmed, emWave, and Lumosity.

Table 3. User Satisfaction of Popular Brain Training Programs

Most popular (%) Ease of useAgree + Strongly agree Engaging over timeAgree + Strongly agree Desired resultsAgree + Strongly agree Correctly pricedAgree + Strongly agree Value for moneyAgree + Strongly agree
Brain Games

18

91

79

40

55

46

BrainHQ

12

86

66

57

40

51

Cogmed

3

90

77

81

55

71

emWave

2

86

62

62

43

54

Lumosity

37

97

82

48

52

50

 

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