Jack Clearman is a PhD candidate at the Department of Psychology. His research is taking place at the Centre for Neuroscience in Education, focusing on the components of working memory, executive function, and relationships to mathematics. Additional investigations into developmental dyscalculia will grow from these initial findings.
Although dyscalculia, a problem learning math skills, is as prevalent as dyslexia there is a fraction of the research done on the topic. Of this work, focus has been placed on a core deficit of numerical processing and magnitude representation. This approach largely ignores the heterogeneous nature of the learning disorder. Dyscalculiacs may also report issues of spatial awareness, face blindness, and co-morbidity with ADHD, dyslexia, and other learning disorders.
Jack's work aims to compartmentalize a newly suggested aspect of dyscalculia: working memory and its subsidiaries, specifically visual/spatial working memory (VWM). To do so he will implement tasks such interference suppression, visual tracking, and memory maintenance in adults. This foundational work will provide a base data set on VWM for further work with children, and finally dyscalculiacs. To bolster behavioral data, eye tracking and electrophysiology (EEG) hardware will be implemented to better understand relationships between eye movements (saccade, fixation, antisaccade), neural activity, and visual working memory. Together, the fields of psychology, neuroscience, cognition, and education will be addressed.
Working memory. Specifically the visio-spatial domain
Maths & Developmental Dyscalculia
- Clearman J, Klinger V, Szűcs D. (2016). Visuospatial and verbal memory in mental arithmetic. Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology. doi: 10.1080/17470218.2016.1209534