A new Irish company claims to have developed an online programme that can significantly raise a person's IQ.
According to the company, Raise Your IQ, a recent trial of the programme in Irish schools resulted in an average IQ increase of 23 points among students. This brought them from an average IQ of 97 to 120, which is considered ‘superior intellectual functioning'.
The SMART (Strengthening Mental Abilities with Relational Training) programme ‘equips the user with cognitive skills which lay the foundation for better intelligent reasoning and thinking and increases intelligence levels'.
"Unlike ‘brain training' products on the market which merely enhance memory, SMART improves the ability to reason logically and think clearly, so it also leads to improvements in verbal ability, perceptual reasoning and speed of information processing," the company claims.
Its latest trial involved 15 students from Rathmore National School in Athboy in Meath. Each student carried out training exercises two to three times a week for more than four months.
Aside from the increase in IQ, in two cases, diagnoses of dyslexia were revised following improvements in reading skills.
The lowest IQ among the students was 84 at the beginning of the trial, however it had increased to 106 by the end. The highest IQ of 119 rose to 140.
Meanwhile evidence suggests that these IQ increases are still in place four years later, the company noted.
It said that its system is based on relational frame theory, which has been developed over the last two decades. According to this theory, the development of relational skills is essential for intellectual development.
Relational skills refers to an understanding of how words and numbers are related to other words and numbers. Relational concepts include, for example, more than, less than, before and after.
The programme was developed by Dr Bryan Roche, a lecturer in psychology in NUI Maynooth and psychologist, Dr Sarah Cassidy. They designed a series of over 50 programmes, which appear as a game in which users attempt to acquire points as they move through levels.
They are currently launching the programme for use by the general public. There are different plans available for adults and children and users will be charged a fee, ranging from €14.95 per month to €89.95 per year.
Speaking at the launch of the programme, Dr Cassidy said that it can have ‘a positive and lasting impact among students globally'.
"We expect significant adoption of the programme by schools and families across the world. The online system is designed to be very user friendly and cost-effective, so that it can be employed in the classroom by teachers or at home by students in their own time," she explained.
She described the results and feedback they have received as ‘very impressive, with improvements across all students who participated in the trials'.
"These improvements change the entire educational outlook of the children involved and the findings represent a genuine breakthrough for educational psychologists," she added.
The programme is available here