Elaborative encoding through self-generation enhances outcomes with errorless learning: findings from the Skypekids memory study

Catherine Haslam*, Joseph Wagner, Signy Wegener, Tania Malouf

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


Errorless learning has demonstrated efficacy in the treatment of memory impairment in adults and older adults with acquired brain injury. In the same population, use of elaborative encoding through supported self-generation in errorless paradigms has been shown to further enhance memory performance. However, the evidence base relevant to application of both standard and self-generation forms of errorless learning in children is far weaker. We address this limitation in the present study to examine recall performance in children with brain injury (n = 16) who were taught novel age-appropriate science and social science facts through the medium of Skype. All participants were taught these facts under conditions of standard errorless learning, errorless learning with self-generation, and trial-and-error learning after which memory was tested at 5-minute, 30-minute, 1-hour and 24-hour delays. Analysis revealed no main effect of time, with participants retaining most information acquired over the 24-hour testing period, but a significant effect of condition. Notably, self-generation proved more effective than both standard errorless and trial-and-error learning. Further analysis of the data revealed that severity of attentional impairment was less detrimental to recall performance under errorless conditions. This study extends the literature to provide further evidence of the value of errorless learning methods in children with ABI and the first demonstration of the effectiveness of self-generation when delivered via the Internet.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)60-79
Number of pages20
JournalNeuropsychological Rehabilitation
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2017
Externally publishedYes


  • errorless learning
  • brain injury
  • children
  • self-generation
  • Skype


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