Developmental Change and Intraindividual Variability: Relating Cognitive Aging to Cognitive Plasticity, Cardiovascular Lability, and Emotional Diversity

Nilam Ram, Denis Gerstorf, Ulman Lindenberger, Jacqui Smith

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

49 Scopus citations

Abstract

Repeated assessments obtained over years can be used to measure individuals' developmental change, whereas repeated assessments obtained over a few weeks can be used to measure individuals' dynamic characteristics. Using data from a burst of measurement embedded in the Berlin Aging Study (BASE; Baltes & Mayer, 1999), we illustrate and examine how long-term changes in cognitive ability are related to short-term changes in cognitive performance, cardiovascular function, and emotional experience. Our findings suggest that "better" cognitive aging over approximately13 years was associated with greater cognitive plasticity, less cardiovascular lability, and less emotional diversity over approximately 2 weeks at age 90 years. The study highlights the potential benefits of multi-time scale longitudinal designs for the study of individual function and development.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)363-371
Number of pages9
JournalPsychology and aging
Volume26
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 2011

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Social Psychology
  • Aging
  • Geriatrics and Gerontology

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