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Multisession, dual-task psychological refractory period practice benefits older and younger adults equally.

Allen, Philip A; Ruthruff, Eric; Elicker, Joelle D; Lien, Mei-Ching.
Exp Aging Res ; 35(4): 369-99, 2009 Oct.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-20183098
The authors tested 18 younger adults and 18 older adults on four sessions in a psychological refractory period (PRP) paradigm, to see whether older adults can benefit as much from dual-task practice as younger adults. Task 1 involved tone discrimination and Task 2 involved simultaneous letter-matching. The stimulus onset asynchrony (SOA) between the tasks was either 50, 150, 300, or 900 ms. Although older adults showed a larger PRP effect than younger adults, there were no group differences in the practice/training benefit. These results differ from Maquestiaux, Hartley, and Bertsch (2004, Psychology and Aging, 19, 649-667, Experiment 1), who found that age differences in PRP effects became progressively larger with increased practice. These findings, along with the simultaneous-presentation, dual-task work of Kramer, Larish, and Strayer (1995, Journal of Experimental Psychology Applied, 1, 50-76) and Bherer et al. (2005, Psychology and Aging, 20, 695-709; 2006, Acta Psychologica, 123, 261-278), suggest that older adults can benefit as much as younger adults from dual-task training.