- Priming effects from young-old to very old age on a word-stem completion task: minimizing explicit contamination
- Aging, Neuropsychology, and Cognition
- Volume | Issue number
- 18 | 1
- Pages (from-to)
- Document type
- Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences (FMG)
- Psychology Research Institute (PsyRes)
We investigated the size of repetition priming effects from young-old to very old age using a newly developed Word-Stem Completion (WSC) task. Retrospectively, we examined the role of explicit, intentional retrieval strategies in priming. We constructed our task by taking factors into account that were known to complicate the measurement of significant and valid priming effects. Within our sample of 170 cognitively healthy elderly persons of 55-94 years old, we found no effects on priming of age, gender, education, intelligence, cognitive status, memory complaints, or depressive symptoms. Participants that subsequent to task administration reported awareness of the study-test relationship obtained higher priming scores. However, analysis of stem-completion times showed that explicit contamination during the task was unlikely. The results suggest that WSC priming is age-invariant up to very old age. This task with increased validity might contribute to the differentiation with Alzheimer's disease by improving specificity of assessment.
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