Age-related slowing, S-R compatibility, and stages of information processing

Virginia Diggles-Buckles, Max Vercruyssen

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Previous work in this laboratory (Vercruyssen, Carlton & Diggles-Buckles, 1989) has found that older individuals are at a disproportional disadvantage when stimulus-response (S-R) compatibility were manipulated, age interacted with the S-R manipulation, suggesting in an additive factors framework that the locus of age-related slowing was the response selection stage. In that study S-R compatibility was manipulated by changing the S-R spatial map as well as changing the environment (subjects were required to cross their arms). The present study attempted to tease apart factors that might be contributing to that age x S-R compatibility relationship by using S-R maps of simple, moderate, and high difficulty as one factor and the arm position (crossed or uncrossed, a test of the Simon effect (Simon, Sly & Vilapakkam, 1981) as a different factor. In addition, stimulus quality was manipulated as a factor in this 4 factor design: age x stimulus quality x S-R map x arm position. Results revealed that both factors, S-R compatibility and arm position interacted with age. The conclusion from an additive factors perspective is that the stages of decision making (S-R compatibility) and response preparation (arm position) show age-dependent slowing whereas the stimulus encoding stage (stimulus quality) does not.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)154-157
Number of pages4
JournalProceedings of the Human Factors Society
StatePublished - Jan 1 1990
EventProceedings of the Human Factors Society 34th Annual Meeting - Orlando '90 - Orlando, FL, USA
Duration: Oct 8 1990Oct 12 1990

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