iPads could help older adult memory
Using electronic devices such as tablets and iPads may actually help older adults improve their memory, according to new research from the University of Texas at Dallas.
For the study, scientists recruited 54 adults between ages 60 and 90. They were divided into three groups--one group that engaged in tasks that required little learning, another group that had regular interactions with other people, but didn't learn any new skills, and a third group in which participants received extensive training on iPads. The researchers then collected data on all of the participants’ cognitive activity over the course of three months.
The study’s results, published in the journal The Gerontologist, showed that the adults who used the iPad were better able to recall events and experiences that occurred at a specific time and place, when compared with the two control groups. The iPad group also showed the most improvements in how fast they were able to think and complete tasks.
The researchers also found that the benefits adults received from using the iPad were maintained a year after the study, suggesting that mastering technological devices may have long-term cognitive benefits. However, they pointed out that the findings are preliminary and that further research is needed.