Header

UZH-Logo

Maintenance Infos

Working memory training in older adults: Bayesian evidence supporting the absence of transfer


Guye, Sabrina; Von Bastian, Claudia C (2017). Working memory training in older adults: Bayesian evidence supporting the absence of transfer. Psychology and Aging, 32(8):732-746.

Abstract

The question of whether working memory training leads to generalized improvements in untrained cognitive abilities is a longstanding and heatedly debated one. Previous research provides mostly ambiguous evidence regarding the presence or absence of transfer effects in older adults. Thus, to draw decisive conclusions regarding the effectiveness of working memory training interventions, methodologically sound studies with larger sample sizes are needed. In this study, we investigated whether or not a computer-based working memory training intervention induced near and far transfer in a large sample of 142 healthy older adults (65 to 80 years). Therefore, we randomly assigned participants to either the experimental group, which completed 25 sessions of adaptive, process-based working memory training, or to the active, adaptive visual search control group. Bayesian linear mixed-effects models were used to estimate performance improvements on the level of abilities, using multiple indicator tasks for near (working memory) and far transfer (fluid intelligence, shifting, and inhibition). Our data provided consistent evidence supporting the absence of near transfer to untrained working memory tasks and the absence of far transfer effects to all of the assessed abilities. Our results suggest that working memory training is not an effective way to improve general cognitive functioning in old age. (PsycINFO Database Record

Abstract

The question of whether working memory training leads to generalized improvements in untrained cognitive abilities is a longstanding and heatedly debated one. Previous research provides mostly ambiguous evidence regarding the presence or absence of transfer effects in older adults. Thus, to draw decisive conclusions regarding the effectiveness of working memory training interventions, methodologically sound studies with larger sample sizes are needed. In this study, we investigated whether or not a computer-based working memory training intervention induced near and far transfer in a large sample of 142 healthy older adults (65 to 80 years). Therefore, we randomly assigned participants to either the experimental group, which completed 25 sessions of adaptive, process-based working memory training, or to the active, adaptive visual search control group. Bayesian linear mixed-effects models were used to estimate performance improvements on the level of abilities, using multiple indicator tasks for near (working memory) and far transfer (fluid intelligence, shifting, and inhibition). Our data provided consistent evidence supporting the absence of near transfer to untrained working memory tasks and the absence of far transfer effects to all of the assessed abilities. Our results suggest that working memory training is not an effective way to improve general cognitive functioning in old age. (PsycINFO Database Record

Statistics

Citations

Dimensions.ai Metrics
11 citations in Web of Science®
9 citations in Scopus®
3 citations in Microsoft Academic
Google Scholar™

Altmetrics

Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:06 Faculty of Arts > Institute of Psychology
08 Research Priority Programs > Dynamics of Healthy Aging
Dewey Decimal Classification:150 Psychology
Uncontrolled Keywords:DoktoratPsych Erstautor
Language:English
Date:December 2017
Deposited On:25 Jul 2018 13:04
Last Modified:25 Jul 2018 13:06
Publisher:American Psychological Association
ISSN:0882-7974
OA Status:Closed
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1037/pag0000206
PubMed ID:29239658
Project Information:

Download

Full text not available from this repository.
View at publisher

Get full-text in a library