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Building Executive Functions for Academic Success Training

BEFAST (Building Executive Function for Academic Success Training)

BEFAST is a University-community partnership (with the San Bernardino County Superintendent of Schools). This program is designed to build and support skills essential to students’ academic success and school engagement. The program focuses on improving cognitive skills (e.g., working memory, executive function, and attention) that are predictive of academic performance utilizing iPad-based cognitive training programs. Additionally, the BEFAST program integrates a life skills/professional development component; this aspect of the program is designed to support students’ social/emotional growth and their professional aspirations. BEFAST incorporates one-on-one and small-group approaches at multiple SB County community day school sites; CSUSB undergraduate and graduate students interact directly with at-risk high-school age students on a daily basis to assist the high-schoolers with the cognitive training.

BEFAST was formally extended into Orange County with the development of the Mind Masters program at The Prentice School. Mind Masters serves elementary to junior high students with learning differences using a cognitive training program to support the development of cognitive abilities essential to academic success. A primary goal of Mind Masters is to remediate developmental delays early in a student’s academic experience to support school performance and engagement.

The impact of BEFAST has been well-documented in numerous publications, as well as, via regional, national, and international conference presentations.