Simple Raisin Test May Predict Academic Abilities in Children A test using a single raisin and plastic cup may be able to predict the future academic performance of toddlers, researchers say. Scientists at the University of Warwick—led by Julia Jaekel, honorary research fellow at the school and assistant professor of child and family studies at University of Tennessee, Knoxville—found ... Research in Brief
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Research in Brief  |   March 01, 2016
Simple Raisin Test May Predict Academic Abilities in Children
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Professional Issues & Training / Research in Brief
Research in Brief   |   March 01, 2016
Simple Raisin Test May Predict Academic Abilities in Children
The ASHA Leader, March 2016, Vol. 21, 11. doi:10.1044/leader.RIB2.21032016.11
The ASHA Leader, March 2016, Vol. 21, 11. doi:10.1044/leader.RIB2.21032016.11
Scientists at the University of Warwick—led by Julia Jaekel, honorary research fellow at the school and assistant professor of child and family studies at University of Tennessee, Knoxville—found that a 20-month-old’s ability to wait to pick up the raisin until told to do so corresponded with academic achievement at age 8, and that the test had predictive abilities greater than gestational age (GA) group alone.
The study, published in The Journal of Pediatrics, observed 558 children born at 25–41 weeks’ gestation as the children were told to wait (for 60 seconds) until instructed before touching or picking up a raisin that was placed under an opaque plastic cup within easy reaching distance. After the researchers controlled for sex and socioeconomic status, children in GA groups from 25 to 38 weeks were more likely than their full-term peers (GA groups from 39 to 41 weeks) to take the raisin before being told.

The lower the raisin test score at 20 months, the more likely the child’s academic achievement and attention regulation would be low at 8.

Re-evaluated at 8 years old by a team of psychologists, pediatricians and their parents, the children were measured in academic achievement and through behavior ratings. The lower the child’s gestational age group, the more likely his or her raisin test score would be low; the lower the raisin test score at 20 months, the more likely the child’s academic achievement and attention regulation would be low at 8.
“The results … point to potential innovative avenues to early intervention after preterm birth,” says Dieter Wolke, senior author and Warwick psychology professor.
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March 2016
Volume 21, Issue 3