Who are you?
Keiron Sparrowhawk, CEO and founder of MyCognition.
What do you do?
MyCognition is a cognitive health company. We have developed NHS approved apps to assess and strengthen cognition in people of all ages from 7 years old.
Cognition controls our behaviour and emotions. It is also critical to our brain health; poor cognition has been identified as a risk factor in neuropsychological disorders. Cognition underpins our performance and ability to perform well academically at school and to be productive at work. Having good cognition makes you healthier.
MyCognition were part of Cohort 3 of the EDUCATE programme and a recipient of an Evidence-Aware Edward quality mark, in 2018 and the Evidence-Applied award in 2019.
What educational challenge did you address?
Our product helps children, teachers and parents – the entire school community – to build mental resilience. However, we tend to be used more in children who have special needs, behavioural or learning difficulties.
MyCognition automatically strengthens cognition where a child has a weakness. Every child gets bespoke training. It helps to build resilience and strength.
What impact did the EDUCATE programme have on your product and company?
The impact was very positive and tangible. Our app is now approved by the NHS and was C-marked by the MHRA as a medical device. There is no doubt that the EDUCATE programme helped us towards these major regulatory milestones. We were also commended by the Gates Foundation for our work in education.
The EDUCATE programme helped refresh the research techniques we used and gave us access to the guidance of UCL experts and other cohort members who were willing to share their expertise.
We found the experience of networking with like-minded people very useful, and the research team were particularly helpful to establish our research question.
What impact did the UCL EDUCATE programme have on your product and company?
They install confidence in everything we do – the acknowledgement is recognition that MyCognition’s research-based approach to education is correct and in line with the requirements of educational institutions and educators. We use this acknowledgement in our promotion and proposals, so that these institutions and educators can see the seriousness of our intent.
What advice would you give to prospective EDUCATE participants?
Go into it open-minded and be willing to learn. Have a realistic belief in what you are doing and be prepared to undertake research to show the benefit of your product. I come across a lot of people in the tech world who have not done that, but in education and health it is vital.