Faculty Scholarly Dissemination Grants

Title

Aging and the segmentation of narrative film

Department

Psychology Department

College

College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

Disciplines

Social and Behavioral Sciences

Abstract

The perception of event structure in continuous activity is important for understanding and remembering experience. Although the segmentation of experience into events is a normal concomitant of perceptual processing, there are individual differences in how well this segmentation is accomplished. Previous research shows that younger adults tend to segment continuous naturalistic everyday activity, such as someone washing a car, better than older adults. This suggests an age-related impairment in the perception of event structure. However, past research has also shown that older adults have a preserved ability to comprehend events in narrative text, which suggests that narrative may improve the event processing of older adults. This study tested whether there are age-differences in event segmentation at the intersection of continuous activity and narrative: narrative film. In support of the possibility that narrative structure supports event understanding for older adults, we found minimal age-differences in segmentation performance.

Conference Name

Psychonomics

Conference Location

Minneapolis, MN

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