Positivity effect specific to older adults with subclinical memory impairment

Stephanie L. Leal, Jessica A. Noche, Elizabeth A. Murray, Michael A. Yassa

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


Numerous studies have suggested that older adults preferentially remember positive information (positivity effect), however others have reported mixed results. One potential source of conflict is that aging is not a unitary phenomenon and individual differences exist. We modified a standard neuropsychological test to vary emotional content and tested memory at three time points (immediate/20 min/1 wk). Cognitively normal older adults were stratified into those with and without subclinical memory impairment. We found that the positivity effect was limited to those with subclinical memory impairment, suggesting that consideration of subclinical memory impairment is necessary for understanding age-related emotional memory alterations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)415-421
Number of pages7
JournalLearning and Memory
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 2016

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology
  • Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience


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