The Effect of Working Memory Training on English Reading Comprehension of Adult English Learners


Gholam Reza Kiany 1 , Bahman Mehraban 2 , * , Reza Ghafar Samar 1

1 Dept. of English, Tarbiat Modares University, Tehran, Iran

2 Dept. of English, Kermanshah University of Medical Sciences, Kermanshah, Iran

How to Cite: Kiany G R , Mehraban B , Ghafar Samar R . The Effect of Working Memory Training on English Reading Comprehension of Adult English Learners , Educ Res Med Sci. 2017 ; 5(2):e79199.


Educational Research in Medical Sciences: 5 (2); e79199
Published Online: January 11, 2017
Article Type: Research Article
Received: October 31, 2016
Accepted: December 22, 2016


Introduction: It is assumed that working memory plays a pivotal role in carrying out all sorts of cognitive functions. The introduction of working memory software has provided researchers with an asset to investigate the differences among individuals which can be attributable to differences in working memory capacity. Following the advent of working memory software, there were also other pieces of software available to the public with the prospect of helping individuals enhance their working memory capacity and as a result enjoy any possible benefits. This study aimed at investigating the possible effects of working memory improvement on some university students’ reading comprehension in English.

Methods: 30 adult university students chosen through convenience sampling approach participated in this study. They were randomly divided into an experimental and a control group. Both groups took pretest on their reading comprehension using three reading texts in English and working memory capacity carried out via the working memory software. While the control group took posttests on the same tests after five weeks, the experimental group underwent a working memory training program consisting of ten sessions before taking the posttests.

Results: The results of t-test analysis showed a significant statistical difference in the performance of the two groups on the working memory test, but their reading task performance scores did not show a significant difference.

Conclusion: The working memory training program did not seem to benefit the participants in carrying out reading comprehension in English.


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