School of Education
August 1, 2011
Professor Announces Successful Completion of Brain Boost Pilot Program in Irvine Unified School District
Brain Boost is a scalable model program targeting the improvement of human intelligence. Designed as an after-school program, Brain Boost aims to increase students’ intelligence and motivation to learn with program effects measured by transfer tasks, students’ beliefs about cognitive ability, and subsequent academic achievement. During this past spring, a successful pilot program was launched in two schools in the Irvine (California) Unified School District: Rancho Middle School and University Park Elementary School.
The program builds three components of intelligence: working memory, inductive reasoning, and vocabulary reasoning. The program also aims to boost motivation by teaching students that intelligence is malleable rather than fixed. The pilot program was enacted as a test of logistical feasibility and a gauge of interest among students, parents, and school administrators.
The Brain Boost project targets three specific goals:
- to establish a scalable model program that can measurably enhance participants’ intelligence,
- to cultivate participants’ academic motivation for intellectual enhancement though understanding the evidence for brain plasticity, and
- to advance the field of learnable intelligence though empirical research on the effects of targeted training programs on school-age participants.
The project entails plans to launch the Brain Boost program in multiple after-school programs in Orange County; however, the program is also designed to be a scalable model that can be implemented widely.