The executive decline hypothesis of cognitive aging: Do executive deficits qualify as differential deficits and do they mediate age-related memory decline?

J R Crawford, J Bryan, M A Luszcz, M C Obonsawin, L Stewart

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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Abstract

This paper reports the results of two studies which investigated whether aging is associated with a differential deficit in executive function, compared with deficits in general cognitive ability (Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale-Revised performance). Further, the studies investigated the specificity of the executive decline hypothesis of memory and aging by examining whether declines in executive function mediate age-related memory decline over and above the variance in memory accounted for by general cognitive ability. The results of Study 1 showed no consistent evidence of a differential decline in executive function among a sample of participants aged between 18 and 75 years. The results of Study 2 indicated a differential decline in one indicator of executive function, the Modified Card Sorting Test, among an older sample aged between 60 and 89 years. Both studies demonstrated that measures of executive function accounted for age-related variance in free recall, recognition, and serial recall, even after controlling for general cognitive ability. However, in Study 1, once variance attributed to speed of processing was taken into account, executive function did not contribute further to the age-related variance.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)931
Number of pages23
JournalAging Neuropsychology and Cognition
Volume7
Publication statusPublished - 2000

Keywords

  • VERBAL FLUENCY
  • WORKING-MEMORY
  • OLDER ADULTS
  • SPEED
  • PERFORMANCE
  • RECALL
  • KNOWLEDGE
  • TESTS
  • TASKS

Cite this

The executive decline hypothesis of cognitive aging: Do executive deficits qualify as differential deficits and do they mediate age-related memory decline? / Crawford, J R ; Bryan, J ; Luszcz, M A ; Obonsawin, M C ; Stewart, L .

In: Aging Neuropsychology and Cognition, Vol. 7, 2000, p. 931.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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