BRAin COnnectivity and Learning Difficulties (BRACO-LD)

BRACO study

What are Learning Skills?
Learning skills can be broadly classified into executive function, language, reading/writing and numeracy skills.

What is Executive Function? How does it affect learning?
Executive function skills are mental processes that enable our child to plan, focus attention, remember instructions, and juggle multiple tasks successfully. It can be described simply as “the management system of the brain” or like the coach of a football team who sets goals, plans and gets things done. The three crucial elements of executive function are working memory, mental flexibility, and self-control and they work together for successful learning.

BRACO study

How do learning skills develop?
Children’s brains develop in spurts called critical periods when important brain connections are formed to allow information processing and integration. Therefore, children’s experiences in this phase have lasting effects on their development and shape their learning outcomes in the long term.

Every child’s brain is unique. Exposed to a unique set of environmental circumstances comes with a personal set of developmental needs. Hence, each child needs a different form of support to maximise his or her learning potential.

What does SICS hope to do?
We hope to study the connections within the brain that will impact the development of various learning skills during preschool age. This will allow us to develop interventions targeted at these brain connections to optimise the learning potential of each unique child.

How can you help?
You can participate in our study if your child is:

  • Between 4 and 7 years old
  • Suspected to have or has delay in learning skills such as speech, writing, counting and executive function

What should I expect?
By participating in BRACO-LD, your child will:

  • Receive a MRI brain scan
  • Play some cognitive games

And you will:

  • Complete online questionnaires


Reimbursements and transportation fees will be provided. There are no additional costs for participating in this project.

To find out more, email us at BRACO@sics.a-star.edu.sg, or simply fill in the form below.

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