CIGEV, area gerontology: Research on Lifespan, Multidirectionality and Plasticity – Director: Matthias Kliegel

From Lab to Life: Cognitive Aging Revisited

Goal

The project “From Lab to Life” aims at exploring the functioning of prospective memory – the ability to remember to do something in the future – in everyday life. Although prospective memory is of high relevance for everyday cognitive functioning, surprisingly, very few studies have systematically addressed the question of everyday performance by objectively measuring everyday prospective memory behavior in older adults’ life. The project aims at testing whether and in what terms cognitive decline measured in the laboratory transfers to everyday life and therefore will provide important novel insights into cognitive aging research.

Methodology

A smart home sensor system will be used to automatically collect information about the residents’ everyday behavior (e.g., forgetting to switch off the light before leaving the apartment). Everyday memory performance is measured with portable communication devices, thereby using experience sampling methods.

These everyday performance data will be related with laboratory and naturalistic measures on prospective memory and other cognitive, as well as metacognitive, motivational, socio-emotional and health variables assumed to predict age- and individual differences in prospective memory functioning.