The science behind BrightStar’s technology is the result of multidisciplinary research and development over the last 20 years by Saul and Jose Kullok and a team of scientists. An early version of the technology focused on alleviating reading difficulties. From 2003 – 2011, it was on the market in Europe, the United Kingdom and the United States. In 2011, a totally revised, Internet-based version of the technology was developed and launched.
BrightStar’s technology is based on the principles of neurology, neuroplasticity and their relationship to the Autonomic Nervous System (ANS).
Reading is a rather young skill…
Speech is considered to be an ancient inborn skill. According to evolutionary theory, speech has been around for at least 50,000 years. But reading is a whole different ballgame – it is here only as long as recorded history: some 5,000 – 6,000 years. While there are dedicated neural pathways in the brain that handle speech, as yet, scientists have not discerned any parallel pathways devoted to the skill of reading.
…that involves complex processes
Perhaps when reading has been around as long as speech, it also will have developed its own neural (nerve) pathways and brain centers. Until then, the brain must call on a variety of processes of great complexity in order to perform the act of reading. With so many different parts of the brain called into play during reading, it’s no wonder that reading is a difficult skill to master.
Stimulating the underlying neural mechanisms
BrightStar’s technology assists those learning to read fluently, naturally and rapidly by stimulating and strengthening the underlying nerve-based (neural) mechanisms responsible for dealing with the organization and timing of visual motion information.
The stimulation is achieved through directing the user’s passive gaze towards flickering icons and fast moving icons in specific patterns on a screen. This activity is correlated to the user’s physiological activity, and increases the brain’s receptiveness to visual stimulation.
BrightStar’s technology improves reading & learning skills by stimulating the underlying neural mechanisms responsible for dealing with the organization and timing of visual motion information.
By stimulating the visual pathways of the brain, especially the Magnocellular nerve cells, BrightStar’s technology enables faster processing and efficient channeling of visual sensori-motor information to the cerebellum. This improves the underlying, involuntary processes required for controlling the eye movements that enable skilled reading.
A Bottom Up approach
BrightStar’s technology is unique in that it helps develop reading, learning and sensori-motor skills by focusing on the underlying, involuntary processes ruled by the Autonomic Nervous System (ANS). It serves as a remedial exercise that improves reading and learning skills from the bottom up.
BrightStar’s technology serves as a remedial exercise that improves reading & learning skills from the bottom up.
Two ‘Zones’ – Allocation of Visual Attention
In order to effect the retraining of early visual sensori-motor activity, BrightStar program’s display screen is divided into two different ‘zones’ of visual attention:
- A peripheral visual attention zone.
- A central visual attention zone.
BrightStar technology aims to trigger novel on/off shifts between these two visual attention zones so that a few goals are achieved:
- A person is trained to ignore peripheral visual distractions without any conscious awareness, whereby focus and attention span are improved.
- Eye-hand coordination is (further) improved through a simple game-like task.
- Lower saccadic eye movement is achieved, by an eye-tracking exercise.
The repetitive nature of switching on/off between the two visual attention zones improves the fluidity of eye movements and the timing involved in the execution of those eye movements necessary to attain reading proficiency.
Low-stress tasks coupled with passive engagement
While participating in the BrightStar Booster, Reader or Builder program, a participant is engaged in a task that requires little attention and delays gratification. In this aspect, BrightStar programs differ from stress-inducing computer games in which the participant attempts to win, score or compete.
During a program session, the individual has only to direct his passive gaze at the visual display and from time to time navigate an object resembling a car along a highway. The user performs an effortless, repetitive eye-to-hand movement that resembles the way we sweep our eyes across the page while reading. Despite receiving game instructions for this game-like-task, there is little or no self-awareness involved: the user has no sense of either acquitting himself well or failing miserably. There’s no stress or competition. There is no feeling of arousal such as one would experience while gaming.
Result of our technology
The result of this approach is that the brain is prompted and able to make beneficial adaptive changes in the neural networks that are involved in reading and language skills. It does this by remapping and coordinating the way the brain allocates visual attention and uses visual stimuli. This way, the brain is enabled to allocate its resources in a more efficient manner.
This way, the brain is enabled to allocate its resources in a more efficient manner.
Research has shown that use of BrightStar’s technology leads to greater reading fluency and comprehension, which leads to more effective and faster learning.
> Read more about the Research on BrightStar’s technology.