Age differences in adults' spatial abilities, learning environmental layout, and wayfinding behavior

Age differences in adults' spatial abilities, learning environmental layout, and wayfinding behavior Empirical relations among age, general spatialability as assessed by psychometric tests,wayfinding-related skills as assessed byexperimental tasks in the laboratory,environmental layout learning as assessed in afield experiment, and wayfinding behavior asobserved in a field experiment were modeled ina study involving 120 younger and 120 olderadults. The best-fitting model showed thatage-related differences in learningenvironmental layout were significantly, butnot exclusively, mediated by a single abilityfactor defined by psychometric tests. Knowledge of environmental layout was theexclusive mediator between general spatialability and wayfinding behavior. Thus, agedifferences in psychometric test performancewere found to be a major factor in accountingfor aging-related decline in learningenvironmental layout, but other variables notassessed in this study also play a significantrole. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Spatial Cognition and Computation Springer Journals

Age differences in adults' spatial abilities, learning environmental layout, and wayfinding behavior

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Publisher
Kluwer Academic Publishers
Copyright
Copyright © 2000 by Kluwer Academic Publishers
Subject
Psychology; Cognitive Psychology
ISSN
1387-5868
eISSN
1573-9252
D.O.I.
10.1023/A:1011445624332
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Empirical relations among age, general spatialability as assessed by psychometric tests,wayfinding-related skills as assessed byexperimental tasks in the laboratory,environmental layout learning as assessed in afield experiment, and wayfinding behavior asobserved in a field experiment were modeled ina study involving 120 younger and 120 olderadults. The best-fitting model showed thatage-related differences in learningenvironmental layout were significantly, butnot exclusively, mediated by a single abilityfactor defined by psychometric tests. Knowledge of environmental layout was theexclusive mediator between general spatialability and wayfinding behavior. Thus, agedifferences in psychometric test performancewere found to be a major factor in accountingfor aging-related decline in learningenvironmental layout, but other variables notassessed in this study also play a significantrole.

Journal

Spatial Cognition and ComputationSpringer Journals

Published: Oct 16, 2004

References

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