The rise and fall of word retrieval across the lifespan

Psychol Aging. 2010 Sep;25(3):719-24. doi: 10.1037/a0018927.

Abstract

Picture-naming performance for 48 black-and-white drawings was investigated in 1,145 Hebrew speakers, ages 5-86. Both a linear and a curvilinear quadratic model fit the data, reflecting an increase in ability with age as well as an increase followed by a decrease beyond that linear rise. Late-life performance was more affected by access difficulty than was early-life performance, with children's responses limited by lexicon size. Immigrants performed more poorly than nonimmigrants, but an identical correlation between participant age and naming scores was found in both groups. We discuss the role of vocabulary funds and controlled access in naming pictures throughout life.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Age Factors
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Aging / physiology*
  • Aging / psychology
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Israel
  • Language Development*
  • Language Tests
  • Logistic Models
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Models, Psychological
  • Neuropsychological Tests
  • Phonetics
  • Reaction Time
  • Semantics
  • Speech*
  • Vocabulary*
  • Young Adult