Development of a mobile attention training software to support the therapy of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)

ADHD is a mental developmental disorder affecting children at an early age. It is characterized by salient inattentiveness, impulsiveness, and/or excessive physical activity, leading to severe problems in patients’ everyday life, particularly regarding educational and social contexts. Current treatment concepts often combine pharmacological and behavioral therapy, but seldomly include digital approaches such as computer-supported cognitive trainings.
Our research project MATS aims at developing and evaluating a playful, digital learning and attention training software to support the ADHD therapy of children aged between five and twelve. The application will address the core symptoms of ADHD by transferring and combining approved non-digital methods into an innovative digital concept. It shall support patients’ impulse control and ability to concentrate in order to increase their cognitive performance. By deploying game mechanics known from digital games and creating a playful overall concept, we will address children’s intrinsic motivation and foster their willingness to use the training tool. Our mobile solution (running on smartphones and tablet PCs with iOS, Android, and Amazon Fire OS) will allow the flexible and versatile use in different contexts in children’s daily routine.

Moreover, we do not only consider the children’s needs and demands but will also integrate their parents and therapists in our concept. By automatically logging and processing training data, the app enables them to monitor the patients’ activities and progress. This allows valuable insights that can be used to further adapt and customize the individual therapy steps. Furthermore, parents can be addressed by the application as well, for instance by providing information, giving recommendations for action, or including them as co-players.
The development of our application will follow an iterative process including rapid prototypes and the evaluation of different game mechanics and styles in user tests. The final prototypical implementation of our concept will be evaluated in a comprehensive user study with the target group to proof its efficiency. Therefore, we will work together closely with a range of therapists to test the application in the field.

Overall, the project MATS is meant to result in an approved mobile application that can be integrated into established therapy concepts as an additional tool. We want to support children with ADHD as well as their parents and therapist by supporting the therapy, reducing symptoms, fostering motivation and, thus, increasing their overall quality of life.
To reach the project’s goals, we work together with two experienced partners: Meister Cody (formerly part of Kaasa Health) and the TU Dortmund University. The Kaasa Health GmbH is an expert in creating playful digital therapies for children and adults to solve healthcare problems. They have already developed two successful products for children, MeisterCody Talasia (addressing dyscalculia and math weakness) and MeisterCody Namagi (addressing dyslexia). The research group of Prof. Dr. Tobias Kuhn at the TU Dortmund University deals with empirical educational research methods and provides the psychological expertise regarding ADHD therapy approaches.

Project Funding

This project is funded by the European Regional Development Fund (EFRE).



  • Linda Graf, M.Sc.

    Telefon: +49 203 379 1653

    Telefax: +49 203 379 4476

    E-Mail: linda.graf[at]

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