Rolison J.J.,Queens University of Belfast |
Hanoch Y.,University of Plymouth |
Wood S.,Scripps College |
Liu P.J.,Claremont Graduate University
Journals of Gerontology - Series B Psychological Sciences and Social Sciences | Year: 2014
Background. Older adults face important risky decisions about their health, their financial future, and their social environment. We examine age differences in risk-taking behaviors in multiple risk domains across the adult life span.Method s. A cross-sectional study was conducted in which 528 participants from 18 to 93 years of age completed the Domain-Specific Risk-Taking (DOSPERT) scale, a survey measuring risk taking in 5 different domains.Results. Our findings reveal that risk-taking tendencies in the financial domain reduce steeply in older age (at least for men). Risk taking in the social domain instead increases slightly from young to middle age, before reducing sharply in later life, whereas recreational risk taking reduces more steeply from young to middle age than in later life. Ethical and health risk taking reduce relatively smoothly with age. Our findings also reveal gender differences in risk taking with age. Financial risk taking reduced steeply in later life for men but not for women, and risk taking in the social domain reduced more sharply for women than for men.Discussion. We discuss possible underlying causes of the domain-specific nature of risk taking and age. © The Author 2014. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of The Gerontological Society of America. All rights reserved.
Hartley A.A.,Scripps College
Psychology and Aging | Year: 2013
Ten measures of speed of processing were administered to 157 individuals, aged 18 to 89 years. The 10 measures comprised five pairs, each of which had a paper-and-pencil and a computer, reaction time (RT) based version of the same measure. Three measures of working memory span were also administered. Two structural equation models were fit to the speed data, one with a single latent variable, speed, and another, nested-factor model in which there were also latent variables for the two methods of measurement. The model with the method latent variables provided a better fit. Age was more strongly related to the method latent variables than to the general speed latent variable. Adding the working memory measures showed that there was also shared variance in those measures beyond the general latent variable, also related to age. The results show that any single measure of speed includes variance due to speed but also to the method of measurement. Use of a latent variable approach to speed is recommended. © 2013 American Psychological Association.
Rolison J.J.,University of Plymouth |
Hanoch Y.,University of Plymouth |
Wood S.,Scripps College
Psychology and Aging | Year: 2012
Are older adults risk seeking or risk averse. Answering this question might depend on both the task used and the analysis performed. By modeling responses to the Balloon Analogue Risk Task (BART), our results illustrate the value of modeling as compared to relying on common analysis techniques. While analysis of overall measures suggested initially that older and younger adults do not differ in their risky decisions, our modeling results indicated that younger adults were at first more willing to take greater risks. Furthermore, older adults may be more cautious when their decision making is based on initial perceptions of risk, rather than learning following some experience with a task. © 2011 American Psychological Association.
Greene G.,Scripps College
Perspectives in Biology and Medicine | Year: 2011
As the world watched the Fukushima reactors release radionuclides into the ocean and atmosphere, the warnings of Dr.Alice Stewart about radiation risk and the reassurances of Sir Richard Doll assumed renewed relevance.Doll and Stewart, pioneer cancer epidemiologists who made major contributions in the 1950s-he by demonstrating the link between lung cancer and smoking, she by discovering that fetal X-rays double the chance of a childhood cancer-were locked into opposition about low-dose radiation risk.When she went public with the discovery that radiation at a fraction of the dose "known" to be dangerous could kill a child, her reputation plummeted, whereas Doll, foremost among her detractors, was knighted and lauded as "the world's most distinguished medical epidemiologist" for his work. Their lives and careers, so closely intertwined, took contrary courses, he becoming "more of the establishment" (as he said), while she became more oppositional.When it was discovered, after his death, that he'd been taking large sums of money from industries whose chemicals he was clearing of cancer risk, his reputation remained unscathed; it is now enshrined in the "Authorized Biography" (2009) commissioned by theWellcome Institute, along with Doll's denigration of Stewart as an "embittered" woman and biased scientist. Stewart lived long enough to see radiation science move her way, to see international committees affirm, in the 1990s, that there is no threshold beneath which radiation ceases to be dangerous; recent evidence from Chernobyl is bearing out her warnings. But a look at the making and breaking of these reputations reveals the power of status, position, and image to shape scientific "knowledge" and social policy. © 2011 by The Johns Hopkins University Press.
Maillot P.,University Paris - Sud |
Perrot A.,University Paris - Sud |
Hartley A.,Scripps College
Psychology and Aging | Year: 2012
The purpose of the present study was to assess the potential of exergame training based on physically simulated sport play as a mode of physical activity that could have cognitive benefits for older adults. If exergame play has the cognitive benefits of conventional physical activity and also has the intrinsic attractiveness of video games, then it might be a very effective way to induce desirable lifestyle changes in older adults. To examine this issue, the authors developed an active video game training program using a pretest-training-posttest design comparing an experimental group (24 x 1 hr of training) with a control group without treatment. Participants completed a battery of neuropsychological tests, assessing executive control, visuospatial functions, and processing speed, to measure the cognitive impact of the program. They were also given a battery of functional fitness tests to measure the physical impact of the program. The trainees improved significantly in measures of game performance. They also improved significantly more than the control participants in measures of physical function and cognitive measures of executive control and processing speed, but not on visuospatial measures. It was encouraging to observe that, engagement in physically simulated sport games yielded benefits to cognitive and physical skills that are directly involved in functional abilities older adults need in everyday living (e.g., Hultsch, Hertzog, Small, & Dixon, 1999).