Long-term effects of mnemonic training in community-dwelling older adults

J Psychiatr Res. 2007 Oct;41(7):585-90. doi: 10.1016/j.jpsychires.2006.04.010. Epub 2006 Jun 15.


The purpose of our study was to investigate the long-term effect of mnemonic training on memory performance in older adults. Five years after participation in a mnemonic training study, we followed-up 112 community-dwelling older adults, 60 years of age and over. Delayed recall of a word list was assessed prior to, and immediately following mnemonic training, and at the 5-year follow-up. Overall, there was no significant difference between word recall prior to training and that exhibited at follow-up. However, pre-training performance, gain scores in performance immediately post-training and use of the mnemonic predicted performance at follow-up. Individuals who self-reported using the mnemonic exhibited the highest performance overall, with scores significantly higher than at pre-training. Our findings suggest that mnemonic training has long-term benefits for some older adults, particularly those who continue to employ the mnemonic.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Aging / psychology*
  • Association Learning
  • Face
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Imagination
  • Male
  • Memory, Short-Term
  • Mental Recall*
  • Pattern Recognition, Visual
  • Practice, Psychological*
  • Reference Values
  • Verbal Learning