STTR Phase I: Innovative Wearable Technology to Facilitate Cognitive Learning Transference

Period of Performance: 01/01/2015 - 12/31/2015

$225K

Phase 1 STTR

Recipient Firm

Koronis Biomedical Technologies Corporat
MAPLE GROVE, MN 55369
Firm POC, Principal Investigator

Research Institution

University of Minnesota- Twin Cities
Twin Cities, MN
Institution POC

Abstract

This Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) Phase I project will develop a neurocognitive training device for the education market which targets executive function (EF) and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and their impact on learning disabilities, reading comprehension and academic success. As many as one out of every five people in the United States has a learning disability (LD) and the cost of educating a student with a LD is 1.6 times the expenditure for a general education student. Thirty-five percent of students with learning disabilities drop out of high school, which is twice the rate of students without LD. This STTR project will benefit children with learning disabilities through development of a device to train cognitive ability. In a broader sense, the technology could also be used to aid adults that have a learning disability. The commercial outcome of the proposed STTR project leads to a marketable product used initially in the context of school or during other real-world activities to improve outcomes for children with a LD resulting in lower overall education costs and higher productivity as an adult. The goal of this research is to develop an untethered neurofeedback system enabling students to apply neurocognitive training within multiple environments including during school and while at home studying. A key innovation of the proposed work is decoupling of the neurofeedback system from conventional computerized interfaces which enables neurocognitive training during real-world activities. It is hypothesized that this approach will lead to improved transference of the training to new scenarios rather than only working for a specific training task. To accomplish this, an alternative wearable based solution will be developed that signals real-time cognitive status to the user through visual feedback enabling them to train their cognitive ability. This phase I project will develop a prototype system capable of real-time electroencephalography (EEG) measurement and classification which provides feedback to the user through wearable eyeglasses. The feasibility will be demonstrated during a neurofeedback training pilot study.