Cognitive Consequences of Expressive Regulation in Older Adults

ASU Author/Contributor (non-ASU co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Dr.. Lisa Emery, Assistant Professor (Creator)
Appalachian State University (ASU )
Web Site:

Abstract: Previous research has suggested that older and young adults are equally able to regulate their outward expressions of emotion and that the regulation of emotional expression in younger adults results in decreased memory for the emotional stimulus. In the current study, we examined whether older adults show this same memory effect. Older and young adults viewed positive and negative emotional pictures under instructions to view the pictures naturally, enhance their facial expressions, or suppress their facial expressions. Older and young adults showed equivalent outward regulation of expression, but suppressing their emotional expressions led to reduced memory for emotional stimuli only in the young adults. The results suggest that older and young adults are achieving control of their expressions through different mechanisms or strategies.

Additional Information

Emery, L., & Hess, T.M. (2011). Cognitive consequences of expressive regulation in older adults. Psychology and Aging. 26(2): 388-396. (Jun 2011) Published by the American Psychological Association (ISSN: 1939-1498). DOI: 10.1037/a0020041
Language: English
Date: 2011

Email this document to