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Psych Congress  

Computer-Based Cognitive Training for Individuals with

Authors  
James Siberski, MS, CMC. Evelyn Shatil, PhD. Carol Siberski, MS, C-GCM, Margie Eckroth-Bucher, PhD, RN. Aubrey French, BS. Sara Horton, BSW. Rachel Loefflad, CRT. Phillip Rouse, MS.
Sponsor  

There is a growing focus in the US on preserving cognitive functioning. However, individuals with Intellectual disabilities (ID) and developmental disabilities (DD) are not provided with opportunities to prevent cognitive decline. These individuals are consistently assumed to not have the desire or ability to use a computer. This experimental study determined if adults with ID/DD (n = 33) could successfully use computer-based cognitive stimulation designed for the non-ID/DD population. Additionally, interest was in whether ID/DD participants would improve in cognitive abilities with 20 minutes of treatment, three times a week for 10 weeks over participants in control groups. Findings indicated that adults with ID/DD can successfully use a cognitive stimulation program and such a program may be beneficial for improving select aspects of cognitive functioning. In the cognitive training group, eleven cognitive abilities out of the 15 measured showed improvements using stringent and lenient statistical significance criteria
The results of the study were encouraging as to the potential of the adult ID/DD population if only given the opportunity to improve their cognitive functioning. The availability and relatively reasonable price of online cognitive training programs also enables caregivers to readily utilize this approach to stimulate their loved ones’ cognitive ability. The findings of this study suggest that with equipment properly adapted to the individual, computer-based cognitive stimulation programs can be beneficial for adults with ID/DD. Our research suggests that improvement appears possible in those individuals with limited cognitive abilities.

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