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J Gerontol. 1990 Sep;45(5):P210-4.

Discourse production and normal aging: performance on oral picture description tasks.

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Washington University, St. Louis.


Changes in language as a function of the normal aging process were studied. Eighty adults between the ages of 20 and 78 described three pictures. Quantifiable measures reflecting speech production, elaboration, and complexity; speech dysfluency; conciseness; and information imparted were abstracted from each description. No relationships between age and these measures were found, except for an increase in the use of prepositional phrases and indefinite words and longer pauses among older persons. Indefinite wording reflects word-finding or naming difficulty, and longer pauses may reflect cognitive slowing. No age-related differences in amount of information imparted were found in either time-limited or time-unlimited speech samples.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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