Universität Freiburg, AG Optomotorik

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Brain Research ...

The human brain is the most complex structure in the universe: the total length of neural connections adds up to 3 millions of kilometres. The brain is the only organ that can change its functions by learning. While it is well known, that the control of movements are learned, it may come as a surprise that the sensory functions of audition and vision are also learned. The control of eye movements needed for vision are learned functions.

... from Basic Research to ...

The research group of Prof. Dr. B. Fischer was focused on visual and optomotor functions since 1968. It was found, that the generation of fast eye movements (saccades) could be changed by daily practice in adult subjects. The natural development of saccade control lasts until adulthood. The discovery of the express saccade, the optomotor reflex, allowed a deeper understanding of the coordination of eye movements and vision.

... to Applications

When applied to children with dyslexia it was found, that a specific component of saccade control exhibits systematic developmental deficits as compared with age matched controls. To learn to read and to write needs also auditory functions. The investigation of auditory performance in dyslexics showed systematic deficits in one or the other of 5 independent subdomains of the auditory system none of which relying on language processing. The research group also investigated a specific visual function called subitizing. Children with dyscalculia exhibit systematic deficits in this domain.

Diagnosis and Training

Prof. Fischer founded the BlickLabor at the university of Freiburg in order to offer the new diagnostic methods to the public. For all 3 domains training methods were evaluated and it was shown, that successful training is possible in a majority of cases and the training transfers to spelling, reading and arithmetic. Meanwhile, diagnostic results were confirmed by different independent research groups: → peception → training

© AG Optomotorik, Email burkhart.fischer@blicklabor.de