The Role of Early School Experiences in the Development of Executive Function

Colloquium | April 1 | 12:10-1:30 p.m. | 1102 Berkeley Way West

 Jennie Grammer, UCLA, Department of Education and Information Studies

 Department of Psychology

Children’s Executive Function (EF) skills develop rapidly during early elementary school and play an important role in student success during the school transition period. Although these associations have been well documented, questions remain regarding the ways in which school shapes EF development, as well as the mechanisms underlying the associations between EF and academic performance. In this talk, I will describe recent efforts to apply new methodologies to address these questions. Focusing on classroom-based assessments (“Group Games”) and electrophysiological (EEG) correlates of response inhibition and attention, I will first describe links between children’s EF, academic achievement, and motivation. I will then provide evidence for the impact of experience in elementary school on EF. I end with a discussion of recent efforts to explore the ways in which school experience impacts EF using classroom-based EEG assessments.