Working memory

This year’s Working Memory Conference welcomes various experts in the field of neuroscience and neuropsychology including keynote speaker Maryanne Wolf,
Dr Jared Cooney Horvath, Dr Nicola Gates and Penni Maher.

What is Working Memory?

Working memory doesn’t sit in any one particular area of the brain. It is a theoretical construct to describe a process. It is an aspect of fluid intelligence.’
- Dr Nicola Gates.

Fluid intelligence includes processes such as strategic planning, problem solving and information processing. At this year’s conference we explore new research in the field of working memory, clinical studies and discuss practical applications of working memory in the classroom and workplace.

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Tuesday 15th August, Sydney
Thursday 17th August, Perth

The Working Memory Conference 2017 is suitable for anyone with a keen interest in working memory, including educators, guidance counsellors, psychologists, speech pathologists, occupational therapists and anyone in the Allied Health professions.

What can I learn this year at the Working Memory Conference?

Jared HovarthThis year we will kick off the conference with Jared Cooney Horvath by setting the foundations of working memory, the concept of chunking and learning how the role of working memory changes across the learning trajectory.

Dr Nicola Gates returns this year to address the adult brain and cognitive training to increase neuroplasticity as well as provide information and practical strategies for adults to improve their brain health.

Maryanne Wolf

Our keynote speaker for this year’s conference, Maryanne Wolf, will speak across two sessions and deep dive into the reading brain circuit to discuss reading development, dyslexia, instruction and intervention in the digital age we live in today all with a focus on the role of working memory.

Lastly, Penni Maher will be joining us to discuss the strategies to manage working memory constraints. She will present us with a case study from St Andrew’s Cathedral School and discuss the process of identifying working memory challenges, developing strategies, working with parents, developing programs, as well as tracking and assessing the outcome/growth of students.

Working Memory Conference 2016 recap

Last year’s Working Memory Conference theme was the impact of working memory and the opportunities for intervention throughout the lifespan of children.

We welcomed expert Dr Michael McDowell, who explored the topic of childhood development and the expectations from a medical perspective. Being a Developmental Paediatrician from the Child Development Network in Brisbane, he was able to share his insights into the consideration needed for different levels of thinking and problem solving required to fulfil a successful child developmental journey.


Dr Julia Starling, a speech-language pathologist also joined us to share ideas on how to support the working memory abilities of children and discuss the impact of auditory working memory on school-aged children’s development of oral and written language.

Neuroscientist, Michelle Byrnes, provided case studies to support her discussion on the use of therapeutic programs for child and adults after they endure a brain injury. Followed by Carla McNeil, director of Learning matters, sharing her practical tips and insights on how she has delivered working memory support for struggling students in New Zealand.

Dr Nicola Gates, who will be joining us again this year, spoke on recent neuroscience research and clinical case studies to explore the information and strategies to assist teachers and psychologists alike to improve working memory and increase the benefits of cognitive training.

This year, we can expect to explore the definition and impact of working memory, how it works and how it can be supported. Followed with strategies to improve brain health, insights into the reading brain circuit including earlier predictions of dyslexia and the practical implementation of strategies and programs to improve working memory in the classroom.

Testimonials from Working Memory Conference 2016

Highly pertinent to my roles as support teacher, literacy & numeracy, to assist teachers and students.’ - Lesly Dryer, School Support Staff.

Appreciated topics not being 'dumbed down' for all people but remained professional accessible. Info was presented for selection of relevance by viewers and assimilating to own field. Allowed for lateral learning.’ - Elise Gibson, Classroom Teacher.

The information is current and highly relevant to current teaching practices.’ - Caroline Dupain, Literacy Classroom Teacher.

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