Academic Commons


Response-Conflict Moderates the Cognitive Control of Episodic and Contextual Load in Older Adults

Eich, Teal S.; Rakitin, Brian C.; Stern, Yaakov

OBJECTIVES: Decline in cognitive control is one of the primary cognitive changes in normal aging. Reaching a consensus regarding the nature of these age-related changes, however, is complicated by the complexity of cognitive control as a construct. METHODS: Healthy older and younger adults participated in a multifactorial test of cognitive control. Within participants, the procedure varied as a function of the amount contextual load, episodic load, and response-conflict load present. RESULTS: We found that older adults showed impaired performance relative to younger adults. We also found, however, that the response selection process underlying the response-conflict manipulation was a major moderator of age-related differences in both the contextual and episodic load conditions-suggesting a hierarchical organization. DISCUSSION: These findings are consistent with previous findings, suggesting that deficits in cognitive control in older adults are directly related to the resolution of response-conflict and that other apparent deficits may be derivative upon the more basic response-conflict related deficit.


  • thumnail for Response-Conflict Moderates the Cognitive Cont.pdf Response-Conflict Moderates the Cognitive Cont.pdf application/pdf 1.8 MB Download File

Also Published In

Journal of Gerontology, Series B: Psychological Sciences and Social Sciences

More About This Work

Academic Units
Published Here
February 24, 2018
Academic Commons provides global access to research and scholarship produced at Columbia University, Barnard College, Teachers College, Union Theological Seminary and Jewish Theological Seminary. Academic Commons is managed by the Columbia University Libraries.