Factors predicting the use of technology: Findings from the Center for Research and Education on Aging and Technology Enhancement (CREATE)

Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta, Georgia, United States
Psychology and Aging (Impact Factor: 2.73). 07/2006; 21(2):333-52. DOI: 10.1037/0882-7974.21.2.333
Source: PubMed


The successful adoption of technology is becoming increasingly important to functional independence. The present article reports findings from the Center for Research and Education on Aging and Technology Enhancement (CREATE) on the use of technology among community-dwelling adults. The sample included 1,204 individuals ranging in age from 18-91 years. All participants completed a battery that included measures of demographic characteristics, self-rated health, experience with technology, attitudes toward computers, and component cognitive abilities. Findings indicate that the older adults were less likely than younger adults to use technology in general, computers, and the World Wide Web. The results also indicate that computer anxiety, fluid intelligence, and crystallized intelligence were important predictors of the use of technology. The relationship between age and adoption of technology was mediated by cognitive abilities, computer self-efficacy, and computer anxiety. These findings are discussed in terms of training strategies to promote technology adoption.

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Available from: Sara J Czaja, Oct 08, 2015
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    • "Using a survey of 7000 retired persons, Ford and Ford (2009) showed that internet use by elderly Americans led to about a 20% reduction in depression; in other words, the internet increased their mental well-being. Predictors of internet use among senior citizens include higher education and greater income (Charness & Boot, 2009; Silver, 2014; Wright & Hill, 2009); positive attitudes towards computers and the internet (Wagner, Hassanein, & Head, 2010); high computer selfefficacy and low computer-anxiety (Czaja et al., 2006); good physical health (Kaye, 2000); and cognitive functioning (Czaja et al., 2006). The main purposes of internet surfing in older age are: managing health (Wong, Yeung, Ho, Tse, & Lam, 2012), nurturing professional interests, maintaining and extending social networks; appreciating the past and enjoying leisure (Khvorostianov et al., 2012). "
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    ABSTRACT: Using data from large scale Annual Social Surveys of the CBS in Israel, the current study investigated the impact of internet adoption and internet uses on the life satisfaction of senior citizens (aged 65þ), compared to those of working age (ages 20e64) during the decade of 2003e2012. The findings show high-medium levels of life satisfaction e higher in younger age group, compared to the senior citizens. Life satisfaction increased moderately over time among the younger age group, while among the older population it remained stable during the decade under study. Our main conclusion is that internet adoption and digital uses increase life satisfaction, after controlling for socio-demographic variables, sociability and health condition. In addition, internet adoption and digital uses can constitute an important channel for increasing life satisfaction among senior citizens and weaker social groups: people from low economic strata and those suffering from health problems that interfere with day-today functioning. Moreover, in contrast to other powerful factors impacting life satisfaction (income, religi-osity, sociability and health problems) this factor can be changed with relative ease, if digital literacy becomes one of the important goals in the national agenda.
    Computers in Human Behavior 01/2016; 54:197-206. DOI:10.1016/j.chb.2015.08.001 · 2.69 Impact Factor
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    • "Besides these psychological and social factors, aging is often accompanied by various physical problems including deteriorating health and cognitive functioning (Butler et al., 1998; Shapira et al., 2007), leading to greater dependency on others (Cox, 1988). Investigators have found that cognitive abilities such as memory and speed of information processing are important to successful performance of technology-based tasks (Czaja et al., 2006; Freese, Rivas, & Hargittai, 2006; Sharit et al., 2004). As a result, seniors often commit more user errors, require more assistance, and need additional time to accomplish assigned tasks (Lee, Chen, & Hewitt, 2011; Pan & Jordan-Marsh, 2010). "
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    ABSTRACT: Using data from large scale Annual Social Surveys of the CBS in Israel, the current research focused on trends of internet adoption and digital uses among the senior population in the past decade (2003–2012). The research goal was to identify the sociodemographic characteristics predicting internet access and digital uses and to examine whether the effects of these factors changed over time. During the decade the rate of internet access and digital uses increased continuously among the senior population, however the gap between them and the younger (20–64) age group was not eliminated; in fact it increased but only slightly. Our findings make it possible to identify disadvantaged groups in which being a senior intersects with additional risk factors: Arabs, immigrants, religious people, respondents from low socio-economic background and people with health problems. These findings are important for policy makers who attempt to promote internet use among Israeli older adults. Focusing on disadvantaged groups and implementing our specific recommendations may have beneficial effects.
    Poetics 10/2015; 52:44-63. DOI:10.1016/j.poetic.2015.06.002 · 1.42 Impact Factor
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    • "Cognitive ability has been shown to affect how many types of ETs people use (Czaja, et al., 2006) and how efficient this use is (Slegers, Van Boxtel & Jolles, 2009). Nonetheless, as for older adults in general (Mitzner, et al., 2010), a wide range of ETs exists in the homes and surroundings of persons with cognitive impairment due to MCI or dementia (Nygård, 2008b; Nygård, et al., 2012; Rosenberg, Kottorp, Winblad & Nygård, 2009). "
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    ABSTRACT: The overall aim of this thesis was to provide new knowledge of everyday technology (ET) use and functioning over time, as perceived by persons with cognitive decline due to mild cognitive impairment (MCI). A secondary aim was to increase knowledge about their views on technology as part of and as potential support in everyday life. The first three studies build on longitudinal instrument-based data from a cohort of 37 older adults with MCI at inclusion. The fourth study included six participants from the same cohort to a qualitative interview study. In Study I special focus was placed on changes in the perceived ability to use ET and involvement in activities. Patterns of different aspects of functioning in everyday life were explored over two years using a person-oriented approach. Study II used a mixed-linear-effect model to examine ET use over two years. Five predefined assumptions were tested regarding factors potentially influencing the amount of ET used. In Study III longitudinal involvement over four years in 15 everyday activities was investigated using differential item functioning. Furthermore, associations over time of perceived ability in ET use and overall perceived activity involvement was examined. Study IV used a grounded theory approach to explore how persons with MCI relate to technology as a part of and potential support in present and future everyday life. The findings in Study I suggest an even distribution between a stable/ascending, a fluctuating, and a descending pattern of functioning the two first years after detection of MCI, with the highest conversion to dementia (58%) in the descending pattern. Perceived ability to use ET fluctuated or descended in 50% of the sample. Study II found a significant decrease in the overall amount of ET used over two years, but the number of users of specific ETs both decreased and increased. Less perceived ability in ET use, less activity involvement, declining cognitive state, and belonging to an older age group predicted use of less ET, while diagnostic state and length of education were non-significant factors. Study III showed that overall activity involvement decreased significantly over four years. Descending involvement was found in seven of fifteen activities. All leisure activities descended. The positive correlations between activity involvement and perceived ability in ET use became stronger over time. In Study IV the findings describe the participants’ different ways of relating to existing and potential future technology in everyday occupations as a continuum of downsizing, retaining, and updating. In connection with the participants’ actions and assumptions in relation to technology and doing, trade-offs between desired and adverse outcomes were made, challenging take-off runs were endured, and negotiations took place of the price worth paying. In conclusion, the findings show that although overall activity involvement as well as the amount of ET used decreased significantly over time on a group level in this sample with MCI at inclusion, variations across activities, individuals and time-points were present. This means that the need for support in ET use is individual and likely to alter over time in persons with MCI. Therefore repeated evaluations of activity involvement and ability to use ET is suggested to facilitate timely interventions during cognitive decline due to MCI, not forgetting the area of leisure. Already-incorporated ETs may serve as a platform for support in daily life for this group.
    05/2015, Degree: Doctoral degree (Ph.D), Supervisor: Louise Nygård, Anders Kottorp & Ove Almkvist
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