The goal of this research is to discover the best methods to improve cognition and the ability to perform important everyday activities of older adults suffering from age-related cognitive decline using technology- based cognitive interventions. Any successful cognitive aging intervention must satisfy two requirements: 1) the intervention must effectively and efficiently improve cognitive abilities necessary for important activities required for independent living, and 2) the intervention must be one that older adults are able and willing to engage in. When either of these requirements is not met an intervention is likely to fail. Study 1 aims to assess the comparative effectiveness of technology-delivered narrow and broad interventions designed to improve cognition and support functional independence. Before and after training a variety of outcome measures will be assessed. A sub-goal of this study is to create indices of functional abilities whose failure could be catastrophic to older adults; therefore we adopt a focus on simulated versions of Instrumental Activities of Daily Living (IADLs). We will also assess whether individual differences mediate or moderate cognitive intervention efficiency. This study will contribute to fundamental knowledge about intervention approaches, as well as contribute to theories of intervention efficiency. Study 2 will investigate technology- based intervention adherence. An intervention that an older adult does not adhere to will not have the desired outcome. Older adults will be asked to adhere to a technology-based cognitive intervention and we will explore the predictions of several technology adoption and medical adherence models applied to this domain, as well as apply a novel temporal-discounting framework to explore the amount of time older adults are willing to invest in training to obtain benefits in the future. This study will provide guidelines and a model of adherence so that technology-based interventions can be designed that promote adherence. The sum of the results from the two proposed studies of the FSU project will provide guidelines for designing targeted, individualized training that effectively improves cognition and IADL performance while also ensuring that maximum benefits are obtained by promoting intervention adherence.

Public Health Relevance

. In the United States the number of Americans aged 65 and older is expected to more than double by the year 2050. Coupled with age-related perceptual and cognitive decline population aging poses an unprecedented challenge. Discovering effective and efficient methods to preserve cognitive health and independence has important implications for older adults and society as a whole.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute on Aging (NIA)
Research Program Projects (P01)
Project #
Application #
Study Section
Special Emphasis Panel (ZAG1)
Project Start
Project End
Budget Start
Budget End
Support Year
Fiscal Year
Total Cost
Indirect Cost
University of Miami School of Medicine
Coral Gables
United States
Zip Code
Evans, Jarrett; Charness, Neil; Dijkstra, Katinka et al. (2018) Is episodic memory performance more vulnerable to depressive affect in older adulthood? Neuropsychol Dev Cogn B Aging Neuropsychol Cogn :1-20
McGlynn, Sean A; Kemple, Shawn; Mitzner, Tracy L et al. (2017) Understanding the Potential of PARO for Healthy Older Adults. Int J Hum Comput Stud 100:33-47
Souders, Dustin J; Best, Ryan; Charness, Neil (2017) Valuation of active blind spot detection systems by younger and older adults. Accid Anal Prev 106:505-514
Rogers, Wendy A; Mitzner, Tracy L (2017) Envisioning the Future for Older Adults: Autonomy, Health, Well-being, and Social Connectedness with Technology Support. Futures 87:133-139
Stuck, Rachel E; Chong, Amy W; Mitzner, Tracy L et al. (2017) Medication Management Apps: Usable by Older Adults? Proc Hum Factors Ergon Soc Annu Meet 61:1141-1144
Charness, Neil (2017) What Has the Study of Digital Games Contributed to the Science of Expert Behavior? Top Cogn Sci 9:510-521
Preusse, Kimberly C; Mitzner, Tracy L; Fausset, Cara Bailey et al. (2017) Older Adults' Acceptance of Activity Trackers. J Appl Gerontol 36:127-155
Barg-Walkow, Laura H; Rogers, Wendy A (2016) The Effect of Incorrect Reliability Information on Expectations, Perceptions, and Use of Automation. Hum Factors 58:242-60
Souders, Dustin J; Boot, Walter R; Charness, Neil et al. (2016) Older Adult Video Game Preferences in Practice: Investigating the Effects of Competing or Cooperating. Games Cult 11:170-120
Charness, Neil; Best, Ryan; Evans, Jarrett (2016) Supportive home health care technology for older adults: Attitudes and implementation. Gerontechnology 15:233-242

Showing the most recent 10 out of 91 publications