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    Professor Kerry Lee's Sharing - Individual differences in working memory: SES, parenting, and societies


    30 Nov, 2023

    14 : 29

    • Professor Kerry Lee of the Education University of Hong Kong shared with us on 27 November 2023 his study “Individual differences in working memory: SES, parenting, and societies”.


      In this comparative study, he examined the role of socioeconomic status (SES) in explaining the working memory (WM) capacity in young children, and whether the observed differences will be explained by parenting style, household environment and parental stress in parenting. The following observations were made from the study:

      • Neither the SES of the family nor parenting style could explain the individual differences in the working memory capacity of children in Hong Kong;
      • SES explained 34% of WM variance in Bangkok, and many of the parents-related measures also explained WM capacity in Bangkok; and   
      • Permissive parenting style would lead to a lower WM capacity in young children.


      Professor Lee suggested three foci for intervention to enhance the WM capacity in young children:  parents should apply more authoritative techniques with their children, enhancing the learning environment at home, and reduce the stress and worries in parenting for parents.