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Video Games as Tools to Achieve Insight into Cognitive Processes

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Book Series: Frontiers Research Topics ISSN: 16648714 ISBN: 9782889195534 Year: Pages: 87 DOI: 10.3389/978-2-88919-553-4 Language: English
Publisher: Frontiers Media SA
Subject: Psychology --- Science (General)
Added to DOAB on : 2016-01-19 14:05:46
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Though traditionally designed for entertainment, video games are being used more and more by psychologists to understand topics such as skill acquisition, cognitive capacity and plasticity, aging, individual differences, and development. The appeal of using video games over simpler laboratory paradigms partly comes from their ability to present rich and complex cognitive challenges more representative of the demands of the complex everyday tasks we perform outside of the laboratory. However, this complexity also presents a host of methodological and analytic challenges. This Research Topic brings together research using games to explore cognitive processes, with a special focus on the challenges of this approach. Challenges are in terms of design, implementation, or data analysis.

Effects of Game and Game-like Training on Neurocognitive Plasticity

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Book Series: Frontiers Research Topics ISSN: 16648714 ISBN: 9782889198405 Year: Pages: 103 DOI: 10.3389/978-2-88919-840-5 Language: English
Publisher: Frontiers Media SA
Subject: Neurology --- Science (General)
Added to DOAB on : 2016-01-19 14:05:46
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Cognitive training is not always effective. This is also the case for the form of cognitive training that this Research Topic focuses on: prolonged performance on game-like cognitive tasks. The ultimate goal of this cognitive training is to improve ecologically-valid target functions. For example, cognitive training should help children with ADHD to stay focused at school, or help older adults to manage the complexity of daily life. However, so far this goal has proven too ambitious. Transfer from trained to non-trained tasks is not even guaranteed in a laboratory, so there is a strong need for understanding how, when and for how long cognitive training has effect. Which cognitive functions are amenable to game training, for whom, and how? Are there mediating factors for success, such as motivation, attention, or age? Are the improvements real, or can they be attributed to nonspecific factors, such as outcome expectancy or demand characteristics? Are there better strategies to improve cognitive functions through game training? This Research Topic of Frontiers in Human Neuroscience charts current insights in the determinants of success of game training.

Learning to see (better): Improving visual deficits with perceptual learning

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Book Series: Frontiers Research Topics ISSN: 16648714 ISBN: 9782889196036 Year: Pages: 95 DOI: 10.3389/978-2-88919-603-6 Language: English
Publisher: Frontiers Media SA
Subject: Science (General) --- Psychology
Added to DOAB on : 2016-08-16 10:34:25
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Perceptual learning can be defined as a long lasting improvement in a perceptual skill following a systematic training, due to changes in brain plasticity at the level of sensory or perceptual areas. Its efficacy has been reported for a number of visual tasks, such as detection or discrimination of visual gratings (De Valois, 1977; Fiorentini & Berardi, 1980, 1981; Mayer, 1983), motion direction discrimination (Ball & Sekuler, 1982, 1987; Ball, Sekuler, & Machamer, 1983), orientation judgments (Fahle, 1997; Shiu & Pashler, 1992; Vogels & Orban, 1985), hyperacuity (Beard, Levi, & Reich, 1995; Bennett & Westheimer, 1991; Fahle, 1997; Fahle & Edelman, 1993; Kumar & Glaser, 1993; McKee & Westheimer, 1978; Saarinen & Levi, 1995), visual search tasks (Ahissar & Hochstein, 1996; Casco, Campana, & Gidiuli, 2001; Campana & Casco, 2003; Ellison & Walsh, 1998; Sireteanu & Rettenbach, 1995) or texture discrimination (Casco et al., 2004; Karni & Sagi, 1991, 1993). Perceptual learning is long-lasting and specific for basic stimulus features (orientation, retinal position, eye of presentation) suggesting a long-term modification at early stages of visual analysis, such as in the striate (Karni & Sagi, 1991; 1993; Saarinen & Levi, 1995; Pourtois et al., 2008) and extrastriate (Ahissar & Hochstein, 1996) visual cortex. Not confined to a basic research paradigm, perceptual learning has recently found application outside the laboratory environment, being used for clinical treatment of a series of visually impairing conditions such as amblyopia (Levi & Polat, 1996; Levi, 2005; Levi & Li, 2009, Polat et al., 2004; Zhou et al., 2006), myopia (Tan & Fong, 2008) or presbyopia (Polat, 2009). Different authors adopted different paradigms and stimuli in order to improve malfunctioning visual abilities, such as Vernier Acuity (Levi, Polat & Hu, 1997), Gratings detection (Zhou et al., 2006), oculomotor training (Rosengarth et al., 2013) and lateral interactions (Polat et al., 2004). The common result of these studies is that a specific training produces not only improvements in trained functions, but also in other, untrained and higher-level visual functions, such as visual acuity, contrast sensitivity and reading speed (Levi et al, 1997a, 1997b; Polat et al., 2004; Polat, 2009; Tan & Fong, 2008). More recently (Maniglia et al. 2011), perceptual learning with the lateral interactions paradigm has been successfully used for improving peripheral vision in normal people (by improving contrast sensitivity and reducing crowding, the interference in target discrimination due to the presence of close elements), offering fascinating new perspectives in the rehabilitation of people who suffer of central vision loss, such as maculopathy patients, partially overcoming the structural differences between fovea and periphery that limit the vision outside the fovea. One of the strongest point, and a distinguishing feature of perceptual learning, is that it does not just improve the subject’s performance, but produces changes in brain’s connectivity and efficiency, resulting in long-lasting, enduring neural changes. By tailoring the paradigms on each subject’s needs, perceptual learning could become the treatment of choice for the rehabilitation of visual functions, emerging as a simple procedure that doesn’t need expensive equipment.

Cognitive and Brain Plasticity Induced by Physical Exercise, Cognitive Training, Video Games and Combined Interventions

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Book Series: Frontiers Research Topics ISSN: 16648714 ISBN: 9782889455072 Year: Pages: 646 DOI: 10.3389/978-2-88945-507-2 Language: English
Publisher: Frontiers Media SA
Subject: Science (General) --- Neurology
Added to DOAB on : 2019-01-23 14:53:42
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The premise of neuroplasticity on enhancing cognitive functioning among healthy as well as cognitively impaired individuals across the lifespan, and the potential of harnessing these processes to prevent cognitive decline attract substantial scientific and public interest. Indeed, the systematic evidence base for cognitive training, video games, physical exercise and other forms of brain stimulation such as entrain brain activity is growing rapidly. This Research Topic (RT) focused on recent research conducted in the field of cognitive and brain plasticity induced by physical activity, different types of cognitive training, including computerized interventions, learning therapy, video games, and combined intervention approaches as well as other forms of brain stimulation that target brain activity, including electroencephalography and neurofeedback. It contains 49 contributions to the topic, including Original Research articles (37), Clinical Trials (2), Reviews (5), Mini Reviews (2), Hypothesis and Theory (1), and Corrections (2).

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