Student, faculty gerontology research project wins second place
Brian Jefferis, a Missouri State senior majoring in psychology, recently won second place at the Missouri Academy of Science for his presentation of a collaborative research effort on the topic of how elders are adapting to and using various electronic devices. Dr. Carol Gosselink, associate professor of gerontology in the psychology department, led the team along with Jefferis, students Kelsey Maloney and Emily Kiehne, and former student Kristine Sinor.
“My presentation elicited a lot of questions and a discussion,” said Jefferis. “I could tell that our topic sparked interest in many of the individuals watching.”
To gather data, the team used questionnaires asking about technology and electronic device use, comparing the answers of respondents aged 60-74 to those over the age of 75.
“In general, young-old (60-74) had moderately to slightly higher percentages of technology use than did old-old (ages 75-88) respondents. However, the old-old participants were more likely to use technology that helped them functionally compensate for potential decline in mobility,” said Gosselink. “Specifically, they were more likely than the younger cohort to use cellphones, GPS and online banking—technology that made their lives and access to social and everyday necessities easier.”
For more information, contact Gosselink at (417) 836-6859.
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