This competitive renewal is to continue the Aging and Development Training Program in the Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences at Washington University. Because of the increased demands of an aging population on society along with the concomitant increased health risks, there is a critical need to train researchers to better understand what does and does not lead to successful aging. Requests are made to support the training of the next generation of researchers in aging at both the predoctoral level and at the postdoctoral level. There are currently 14 faculty who serve as the Preceptors (primary mentors) in this program along with 3 Affiliated (Other) faculty. This training program focuses on the Psychology of Aging, and emphasizes a multifaceted approach to individual differences in their aging trajectory including the following interrelated themes: cognitive aging, cognitive neuroscience in healthy and abnormal aging, personality and social aging, and translational science. Although trainees will develop depth within one of these themes, the program is designed to expose trainees to breadth across themes. The program trains candidates both in clinical and non-clinical areas of Psychology and benefits from the emphasis at Washington University on aging and age-related diseases, as reflected by the Charles F. and Joanne Knight Alzheimer's Disease Research Center and the Center for Aging. As described in the proposal, the Department continues its emphasis on the Psychology of Aging, with 5 of the last 7 faculty hires having substantive research focus in aging, which makes this program ideal for training. In this proposal we document the high quality of the program trainees and faculty, the structure of its well-established training program and its assessment, and the success of the training.
This training grant is unique in training the next wave of research oriented psychologists to meet the increasing demands of an aging population. Trainees focus on cutting edge work in cognitive neuroscience, Alzheimer's disease, personality and in minimizing some of the deleterious effects of aging. This highly interactive group of scientists brings considerable expertise and strong track records in graduate and postdoctoral training.
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