Memory Maestros

The Memory Maestros (MM) study, commenced in 2012, investigated working memory in children recruited in Grade 1 from 44 schools across metropolitan Melbourne, Australia. MM has two components:

1. An observational cohort study, following 1802 children over 24 months, examining the relationship between working memory development and educational outcomes.

2. A nested population based RCT of a working memory intervention, involving 452 children with low working memory.

Conclusions from the MM study led to recommendations being provided to the Victorian Department of Education and Training about the efficacy of using adaptive working memory training interventions within schools and dissemination of information to departments within the Royal Children’s Hospital who provide support for children with learning difficulties.

Study Summary
Study name Memory Maestros
Study abbreviation Memory Maestros
Current principal investigator/s Gehan Roberts
Melissa Wake
Susan Gathercole
Lisa Gold
Peter Anderson
Current project manager

Jon Quach

Primary Institution/s Murdoch Children’s Research Institute - MCRI
Collaborating Institution/s The Royal Children’s Hospital - RCH
University of York, England
Deakin University
Major funding source/s National Health and Medical Research Council - NHMRC
Study website
Key reference for study
Study focus

To determine if working memory can be improved with cognitive training using a school-based computerised working memory program among those with low working memory

Sampling frame

Observational cohort: Children in grade 1 classrooms from 44 schools in metropolitan Melbourne (Australia)

RCT: Those children from the observational cohort screened as having low working memory

Primary study type Randomised Control Trial / Other trial
Year commenced


Is this study ongoing? No - the study is complete
Year study ended 2014
Ongoing recruitment? No
Sample size (N)

1802 were recruited in the cohort, with a subset of 453 participants qualifying for the working memory intervention sub-sample

Survey data available? Yes
Imaging data available? No
Linkage to administrative dataset/s? Yes, linkage to (at least one) administrative dataset completed
Biosamples available? Yes
Are data available to others outside study team, with appropriate safeguards and structures in line with the cohort’s ethics and governance processes? Yes
Are there any costs associated with data/sample access for approved requests? There are usually no costs associated with access
Broadest type of participant consent available Extended consent (can be used for future ethically approved research related to this project)
Phase Year Age Sample size (N)
1: Baseline and screening 2012 6-7 years N(Total)=1802
2: Intervention 2012 6-7 years N(Substudy)=452
3: 6 month follow-up 2012 6-8 years N(Substudy)=452
4: 12 month follow-up 2013 7-8 years N(Substudy)=452
5: 24 month follow-up 2014 8-9 years N(Total)=1269
Study Contacts
Principal investigator/s Gehan Roberts
Melissa Wake
Susan Gathercole
Lisa Gold
Peter Anderson
Project manager

Jon Quach

Study Contact

Address: Murdoch Children's Research Institute,
Royal Children’s Hospital
Flemington Road, Parkville
Victoria 3052 Australia