ERIC Number: ED272774
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1985-Aug
Reference Count: 0
Life Satisfaction and Intellectual Functioning: Continuity between Young-Old, Old-Old, and Very-Old Age.
Field, Dorothy; Schaie, K. Warner
While research has examined both life satisfaction and intellectual functioning of older adults, the relationship between these two dimensions has been investigated very little. A study was conducted to explore continuity in intellectual functioning over time in advanced old age, continuity in life satisfaction during the same period, the relationship between these two constructs, and how they are affected by whether the subjects are young-old, old-old, or very-old. Subjects were from the Berkeley Older Generation Study and were the parents of the 1928-1929 Guidance Study and Berkeley Growth Study children. In 1968-1969 and again in 1982-1983, subjects completed: (1) the Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale; (2) a life satisfaction measure rating zest versus apathy, resolution and fortitude, congruence of goals, self-concept, and mood tone; and (3) five measures of intellectual functioning (intelligence, mental alertness, speed of mental processes, accuracy in thinking, and use of language). At the last follow-up, 61 subjects were aged 75-84 (old-old) and 29 subjects were aged 85-93 (very-old). The results revealed important changes in intellectual functioning and continuity in life satisfaction in advanced old age. Declines were found for most of the oldest people, yet individual differences were apparent in both the old-old and the very-old groups. No predictive relationship between life satisfaction and intelligence over time was found. Future research will examine possible sex differences, the influence of the constructs of such variables as health, and the possibility of non-linearity over time. (NB)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: National Inst. on Aging (DHHS/PHS), Bethesda, MD.
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Convention of the American Psychological Association (93rd, Los Angeles, CA, August 23-27, 1985). For related document, see CG 019 258.