Reference : Working Memory and Learning A 3-Year Longitudinal Study of Children Growing Up In a M...
Dissertations and theses : Doctoral thesis
Social & behavioral sciences, psychology : Theoretical & cognitive psychology
Working Memory and Learning A 3-Year Longitudinal Study of Children Growing Up In a Multilingual Environment
Engel de Abreu, Pascale mailto [University of Luxembourg > Faculty of Language and Literature, Humanities, Arts and Education (FLSHASE) > Educational Measurement and Applied Cognitive Science (EMACS)]
University of York, ​York, ​​UK
PhD in Psychology
Gathercole, S mailto
Jarrold, C mailto
Gaskell, G mailto
[en] working memory ; development ; children ; learning ; longitudinal
[en] This thesis presents the findings of a 3-wave, latent variable longitudinal study,
exploring variations and the development of working memory in young children and
its contributions to learning in the key domains of language, literacy, and
mathematics. A sample of 119 Luxembourgish children, learning German and
French as secondary languages, were followed from kindergarten to second grade
and completed multiple assessments of working memory, short-term memory,
phonological awareness, fluid intelligence, vocabulary, language comprehension,
foreign language knowledge, reading, spelling, and mathematics.
Results indicate that relations between the measures were best characterized by a
model consisting of two related but separable constructs - corresponding to shortterm
storage and a central executive - that were highly stable across the years.
Whereas verbal short-term memory was more specifically linked to early language
development and vocabulary in particular, the central executive appeared to support
learning in a wide range of domains, including language comprehension, literacy,
and mathematics.
The findings reinforce previous evidence indicating that verbal short-term memory is
one of the main contributors to vocabulary development by supporting the formation
of stable phonological representations of new words in long-term memory.
Furthermore, the findings fit well with the position that the central executive makes
general rather then specific contributions to learning - possibly in terms of an
attentional control system that actively maintains crucial information and regulates
controlling processes during complex cognitive activities. In conclusion, the findings
indicate that different components of the working memory system can be reliably
assessed in children as young as 5; that individual differences in these abilities are
highly stable over time; and that working memory assessments are predictive of
future learning in key academic domains. This reinforces the value of early screening
of working memory abilities to identify children who are at a present and future
educational risk.

File(s) associated to this reference

Fulltext file(s):

Open access
P.Engel_THESIS_WM and learning.pdfPublisher postprint1.2 MBView/Open

Bookmark and Share SFX Query

All documents in ORBilu are protected by a user license.