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Older people 'should use trial-and-error learning'

Older people 'should use trial-and-error learning'
24th August 2011

Learning information using a trial-and-error method could benefit older people using home care, with researchers finding it to lessen cognitive decline.

In the past, scientists have said that passive "errorless" learning is most beneficial to older brains, but the new study, published in journal Psychology and Aging, found that this may not be the case.

Trial-and-error learning was found to improve memory in all participants, with individuals better remembering the context of target words using this method compared to the errorless condition.

Additionally, this effect was particularly true among older adults whose performance benefitted around 2.5 times more compared to their younger counterparts.

Meanwhile, a study conducted at the University of Pennsylvania has revealed that experiencing a single traumatic brain injury could set off cognitive decline.

The results of the study underline the seriousness of a single traumatic brain injury, with the neurodegeneration appearing similar to that seen in Alzheimer's disease.

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