The effects of adult aging and induced positive and negative mood on planning
Changes in executive functions have been found in older adults and also in young adults experiencing positive or negative mood states. The current study investigated the hypothesis that older adults would show greater executive function impairment following mood induction than young adults. Ninety-six participants (half aged 19-37, half aged 53-80) completed a neutral, positive, or negative mood induction procedure, followed by the Tower of London planning task. Significant interactions were found between age and mood such that older adults showed greater planning impairment than young adults in both the positive and negative mood conditions. Emotionally salient events occurring before testing may interfere with executive function in older adults.