Cognitive Aging Through A Variety Of Theories

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Research has attempted to explain cognitive aging through a variety of theories. Each of these theories believes that it can encapsulate all the changes that occur in cognition as individual’s age. Some of these cognitive aging theories include executive function, speed of processing, inhibition and frontal lobe theory. This paper will examine each theory along with the supporting research. Furthermore this paper will attempt to draw a conclusion on which theory or explanation best explains cognitive aging.
The first theory that aims to explain cognitive aging is executive functioning or executive control. Executive functioning tends to become entangled with speed of processing across the literature. However, it should be noted that executive function encompasses many complex tasks and cognitive facets. A study done by C.T Albinet et al. (2012) tried to identify the key elements of executive functioning thus allowing it to stand-alone. Albinet et al. (2012) identified that executive functioning is the ability to create goals, “planning, action sequences & monitoring, mental flexibility, inhibition & updating working memory” (Albinet et al, 2012, pg.2). Essentially executive functioning is higher level everyday functioning. A study done by Cepeda, Blackwell & Munakata (2013) suggests that executive function is needed behind many tasks that may be considered part of speed of processing. An example the study (Cepeda, Blackwell, Munakata, 2013) provided was in young children
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