- Age-related changes in deterministic learning from positive versus negative performance feedback
- Aging, Neuropsychology, and Cognition
- Volume | Issue number
- 22 | 5
- Pages (from-to)
- Document type
- Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences (FMG)
- Psychology Research Institute (PsyRes)
Feedback-based learning declines with age. Because older adults are generally biased toward positive information ("positivity effect"), learning from positive feedback may be less impaired than learning from negative outcomes. The literature documents mixed results, due possibly to variability between studies in task design. In the current series of studies, we investigated the influence of feedback valence on reinforcement learning in young and older adults. We used nonprobabilistic learning tasks, to more systematically study the effects of feedback magnitude, learning of stimulus-response (S-R) versus stimulus-outcome (S-O) associations, and working-memory capacity. In most experiments, older adults benefitted more from positive than negative feedback, but only with large feedback magnitudes. Positivity effects were pronounced for S-O learning, whereas S-R learning correlated with working-memory capacity in both age groups. These results underline the context dependence of positivity effects in learning and suggest that older adults focus on high gains when these are informative for behavior.
- go to publisher's site
If you believe that digital publication of certain material infringes any of your rights or (privacy) interests, please let the Library know, stating your reasons. In case of a legitimate complaint, the Library will make the material inaccessible and/or remove it from the website. Please Ask the Library, or send a letter to: Library of the University of Amsterdam, Secretariat, Singel 425, 1012 WP Amsterdam, The Netherlands. You will be contacted as soon as possible.