Primary and secondary schools and City College Peterborough signed up to assess and train students’ cognitive function

Programme aims to enhance the lives of students and young people by

 improving their cognition


MyCognition, a leading cognitive assessment and training company today announces a ground-breaking partnership with Peterborough City Council to deliver personalised brain training to thousands of the city’s students and pupils.


The three-year partnership, the first of its kind in the UK, will give students and young people in up to 70 of Peterborough’s primary, secondary, further education and special schools access to MyCognition’s online cognitive assessment and training programmes, which aim to measure and improve cognitive function and support educational attainment.


The first phase of the new initiative, which started its roll out in June, is a collaboration between City College Peterborough, Peterborough City Council and Peterborough Learning Partnership. The partnership reflects the increasing awareness amongst UK heads and school leaders of the importance of good cognitive function for pupils’ ability to learn and progress, which in turn is seeing growing numbers of forward-thinking schools introduce cognitive training into the classroom.


MyCognition’s science-based programmes work by assessing an individual’s cognitive function and personalising the online training games to focus on and help to improve areas of greatest cognitive need. Cognition is the ability to plan and organise, problem solve, remember things, and focus, it has an impact on all aspect of peoples’ lives including their ability to learn, cope with everyday situations and their mental wellbeing.


City College Peterborough – The partnership will support young people from a variety of diverse backgrounds studying at City College, including students preparing for employment and further learning as well as those with English as a second language, additional educational needs or dyslexia – although many will not have an official diagnosis. MyCognition’s cognitive assessment tool, MyCQ, will help to identify those students whose cognition is not functioning optimally.  They will then be supported with tailored brain training games that target their specific areas of cognitive need. The intervention will also support learners on the college’s traineeship programme.  Students’ progress in Maths and English will be used as a benchmark to assess the impact of the programme.

Primary, secondary and specialist schools – Peterborough City Council is actively seeking ways to support its schools in improving pupil attainment.  From June, cognitive assessments are being made available to pupils in Peterborough’s participating primary and secondary schools.   Pupils whose cognitive function scores are low, including many with special educational needs, will be given access to Unique, a personalised programme for children aged 8-18 years with learning and behavioural difficulties,[1]to help address any areas of cognitive deficit with the aim of boosting their performance in the classroom.  The 12 week programme can be used at school and at home and this flexibility will raise family awareness and encourage inclusion in the programme.


Peterborough’s University Technical College (UTC), which will open in September will offer MyCognition’s assessment and training programmes as an element of its developmental work with students aged 14 – 17. It is anticipated 140 students will engage in the programme which helps tutors better understand learner strengths and weaknesses at the point of admission.


Since the launch of its education products Unique – aimed at those with special educational needs – and Achieve – for all learners, earlier this year, MyCognition has experienced rapid demand from schools, particularly across Greater London and the South East.  As well as working with Peterborough Learning Partnership, MyCognition is currently developing programmes for Claydon High School in Ipswich, Royal Free Hospital Children’s School in London and Notre Dame Primary School in Greenwich.  This demand is further evidenced by a recent survey of educationalists which indicated that 84% of respondents from schools’ leadership teams say they believe that all pupils could benefit from cognitive training[2].  


Iain Simper, CEO, Peterborough Learning Partnership said:


“We have been hugely impressed by this science-based cognitive training programme, and feel it has the potential to make a significant and lasting difference to many of Peterborough’s young people. As educationalists we need to look beyond subject specific difficulties and address underlying causes which could be associated with poor cognition and the interest in MyCognition at our recent Festival of Learning Conference demonstrates that the desire is there to find effective ways to do this. We believe that by improving the cognitive function of our students, we are also improving their life chances.”


Keiron Sparrowhawk, founder and chief executive of MyCognition said;

“We are delighted to be working with Peterborough Learning Partnership to deliver this ground-breaking project.  MyCognition’s training programmes have been shown to help improve concentration, attention and memory[3] – boosting individual’s capacity to learn and develop.  We are very excited about what can be achieved through this partnership and are looking forward to working with the schools and City College to improve the lives of Peterborough’s next generation.”



Allison Sunley, Post 16 Learning and Skills Adviser, Peterborough City Council said:


“We have been impressed by this research-based cognitive training programme, and we feel it has the potential to make a real and lasting difference to people and businesses in Peterborough.  The initial implementation stage will target people at critical points in their lives whether at school or college, trying to get into work or starting up a business – just when they may need support.”


MyCognition’s brain training programmes have been trialed by over 2,000 primary and secondary school children and evidence from trials in the UK and abroad has demonstrated that repeated use leads to higher MyCQ scores, signaling improved cognitive function[4].


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[1] MyCognition’s work with 11 Welsh primary School in Key Stage 2 has demonstrated that with regular training pupils were able to improve their cognitive function which led to better performance in the classroom

[2] Independent study of 574 teachers, SENCOs and head teachers carried, March 2016

[3] Stad & Esch School, Netherlands. In a study of 600 children, the research found playing a MyCognition game for three 20 minute sessions a week, over eight weeks led to statistically significant gains in executive function and working memory

[4] Welsh schools Study, 2014-15: 11 schools participated. The mean MyCQ assessment scores of students completing the training protocol durationrose by 11.4 points from 24.42 to 35.84. Improvements were seen in all cognitive domains, with the biggest areas of improvement were in processing speed and attention.