Processing speed is one of the primary elements of the cognitive process; this is why special focus must be given to this element. It influences learning, academic performance, intellectual development, reasoning, and experience. Processing speed is measured in the time that lapses from the moment you receive the information until you start to respond to the information.
It is a cognitive ability that can be defined as the time it takes a person to complete a specific mental task. It is related to the speed in which a person can see, process, understand and react to the information they receive. Slow or poor processing is not necessarily related to intelligence. It means that a specific task can be more difficult than others for an individual. It will also influence processing tasks, as without necessary speed focus can become a problem. It is a specific area that can and should be developed. When we are able to process information automatically, we are able to process quickly and without doing it consciously. The higher the processing speed, the more efficient you are able to think and to learn.
When looking at processing speed within the reading action, we take note of the following: the essential building blocks for reading should be mastered. These essentials include phonological awareness, phonics, vocabulary and fluency. If one of these should lack during the reading process, comprehension is severely compromised, and academic reading cannot take place. Fluency in reading is critical for reading competency and is consequently fundamental in reading success. Taylor further states that many learners fail to make the required transition to fluent reading, and subsequently, they encounter significant difficulties in contracting meaning from text.
Exercises within EyeBrainGymTM develops students’ perceptual accuracy, visual efficiency, visual accuracy and visual memory, subsequently enabling students to bypass decoding because words and word parts are automatically recognised as visual orthographic images from declarative and procedural memory. The improved processing speed then allows working memory to be fully utilized for comprehension purposes.
Examples within the EBG system that assist in developing processing speed
- Various visual exercises are focussed on training the brain to recognize patterns
- Visual exploration tasks are part and parcel of the MindActivation and Meta-cognition exercises. Mind-activation pages and Meta-cognition exercises train your brain to explore visual information in new and exciting ways. You will learn to ask the right questions in order to be able to find the information you need to succeed. You will be able to develop strategies to improve your exploration skills of which using clues to predict and infer more than what the information is telling you, to evaluate information and decide what is important, as well as to draw conclusions faster and more efficiently.
- These and other skills and strategies developed will allow you to have improved simple decision making by finding the relevant information quickly and making informed decisions.
Processing speed affects every stage of learning, and it contributes to many learning disorders. With our exercises and reports, we are able to gather reliable information regarding the users cognitive processing speed easily. Like any other cognitive function or ability, you can train, and improve processing speed and EBG will help you to do this with fun and challenging exercises. The basis of improving processing speed is to develop meta-cognitive strategies. This enables more solid connection in the brain, which allows the signals to travel faster to one-another.
Most of these connections are formed in our brain when we are young, but it is still possible to train them and improve your brain processing speed. Neuroplasticity is described as the brain’s ability to reorganize itself by forming new neural connections throughout life. Connections within the brain are constantly becoming stronger or weaker, depending on what is being used. This improves functionality. This is the ‘muscle-building’ part of the brain; the physical basis why repetition strengthens the power of choices and actions. Over time it becomes automatic – a part of who we are. EBG harnesses these truths in a way that structures the eyes, muscles, neurons and mind in accurate patterns to interact faster and with more accuracy with information.
(Taylor, 2000; Koenig, 2015; National Reading Panel, 2000; Kame’enui & Simmons, 2001).