Mind over memory: Cueing the aging brain

Alexandra Morcom

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

A decline in recollection is a hallmark of even healthy aging and is associated with wider impairments in mental control. Older adults have difficulty internally directing thought and action in line with their goals, and often rely more on external cues. To assess the impact this has on memory, emerging brain imaging and behavioral approaches investigate the operation and effectiveness of goal directed control before information is retrieved. Current data point to effects of aging at more than one stage in this process, particularly in the face of competing goals. These effects may reflect wider changes in the proactive, self-initiated regulation of thought and action. Understanding them is essential for establishing whether internal “self-cueing” of memory can be improved, and whether - and when – it is best to use “environmental support” to maximize memory performance.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)143-150
Number of pages8
JournalCurrent Directions in Psychological Science
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2016

Keywords / Materials (for Non-textual outputs)

  • episodic memory
  • ageing
  • cognitive control
  • environmental support
  • memory cues


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