Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Lack Of Imagination In Older Adults Linked To Declining Memory

Date:
January 8, 2008
Source:
Association for Psychological Science
Summary:
Most children are able to imagine their future selves as astronauts, politicians or even superheroes; however, many older adults find it difficult to recollect past events, let alone generate new ones. A new study reveals that the ability of older adults to form imaginary scenarios is linked to their ability to recall detailed memories.

Most children are able to imagine their future selves as astronauts, politicians or even superheroes; however, many older adults find it difficult to recollect past events, let alone generate new ones.
Credit: iStockphoto

Most children are able to imagine their future selves as astronauts, politicians or even superheroes; however, many older adults find it difficult to recollect past events, let alone generate new ones. A new Harvard University study reveals that the ability of older adults to form imaginary scenarios is linked to their ability to recall detailed memories.

Related Articles


According to the study, episodic memory, which represents our personal memories of past experiences, "allows individuals to project themselves both backward and forward in subjective time."

Therefore, in order to create imagined future events, the individual must be able to remember the details of previously experienced ones extract various details and put them together to create an imaginary event, a process known as the constructive-episodic-simulation.

Harvard psychologists Donna Rose Addis, Alana Wong and Daniel Schacter supported the hypothesis using an adapted version of the Autobiographical Interview in which young and older participants responded to randomly selected cue words with past and future scenarios.

When compared with young adults, the researchers found that the older adults displayed a significant reduction in the use of internal episodic details to describe both past memories and imagined future events.

The results of the study "Age-Related Changes in Simulation of Future Events" appear in the January 2008 issue of Psychological Science, a journal of the Association for Psychological Science.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Association for Psychological Science. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Association for Psychological Science. "Lack Of Imagination In Older Adults Linked To Declining Memory." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 8 January 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/01/080107110352.htm>.
Association for Psychological Science. (2008, January 8). Lack Of Imagination In Older Adults Linked To Declining Memory. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 2, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/01/080107110352.htm
Association for Psychological Science. "Lack Of Imagination In Older Adults Linked To Declining Memory." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/01/080107110352.htm (accessed April 2, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Mind & Brain News

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

AAA: Distracted Driving a Serious Teen Problem

AAA: Distracted Driving a Serious Teen Problem

AP (Mar. 25, 2015) While distracted driving is not a new problem for teens, new research from the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety says it&apos;s much more serious than previously thought. (March 25) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Smartphone Use Changing Our Brain and Thumb Interaction, Say Researchers

Smartphone Use Changing Our Brain and Thumb Interaction, Say Researchers

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Mar. 25, 2015) European researchers say our smartphone use offers scientists an ideal testing ground for human brain plasticity. Dr Ako Ghosh&apos;s team discovered that the brains and thumbs of smartphone users interact differently from those who use old-fashioned handsets. Jim Drury went to meet him. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Many Don't Know They Have Alzheimer's, But Their Doctors Do

Many Don't Know They Have Alzheimer's, But Their Doctors Do

Newsy (Mar. 24, 2015) According to a new study by the Alzheimer&apos;s Association, more than half of those who have the degenerative brain disease aren&apos;t told by their doctors. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
A Quick 45-Minute Nap Can Improve Your Memory

A Quick 45-Minute Nap Can Improve Your Memory

Newsy (Mar. 23, 2015) Researchers found those who napped for 45 minutes to an hour before being tested on information recalled it five times better than those who didn&apos;t. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins