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ERIC Number: EJ936926
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011-Sep
Pages: 6
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 55
ISSN: ISSN-0033-2909
Only Time Will Tell: Cross-Sectional Studies Offer No Solution to the Age-Brain-Cognition Triangle--Comment on Salthouse (2011)
Raz, Naftali; Lindenberger, Ulman
Psychological Bulletin, v137 n5 p790-795 Sep 2011
Salthouse (2011) critically reviewed cross-sectional and longitudinal relations among adult age, brain structure, and cognition (ABC) and identified problems in interpretation of the extant literature. His review, however, missed several important points. First, there is enough disparity among the measures of brain structure and cognitive performance to question the uniformity of B and C vertices of the ABC triangle. Second, age differences and age changes in brain and cognition are often nonlinear. Third, variances and correlations among measures of brain and cognition frequently vary with age. Fourth, cross-sectional comparisons among competing models of ABC associations cannot disambiguate competing hypotheses about the structure and the range of directed and reciprocal relations between changes in brain and behavior. We offer the following conclusions, based on these observations. First, individual differences among younger adults are not useful for understanding the aging of brain and behavior. Second, only multivariate longitudinal studies, age-comparative experimental interventions, and a combination of the two will deliver us from the predicaments of the ABC triangle described by Salthouse. Mediation models of cross-sectional data represent age-related differences in target variables but fail to approximate time-dependent relations; thus, they do not elucidate the dimensions and dynamics of cognitive aging.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Opinion Papers; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A