The Influence of Aging on Audiovisual Temporal Order Judgments
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UNLABELLED: BACKGROUND/STUDY CONTEXT: The perception of naturalistic events depends on the ability to integrate perceptual information from multiple sensory systems. Currently, little is known about how multisensory integration is affected by normal aging. METHODS: The authors conducted two experiments to investigate audiovisual temporal processing in younger (18-29 years) and older (70+ years) adults. In both experiments, participants were presented with a brief visual stimulus and a brief auditory stimulus separated by various temporal offsets, and participants judged which stimulus was presented first. In Experiment 1, the auditory and visual stimuli were presented from the same perceived location, whereas in Experiment 2 they were presented from different locations. RESULTS: The authors found no effect of stimulus location, and no evidence of age-related declines in performance in either experiment. CONCLUSION: Older adults appear to retain the ability to discriminate the temporal order of audiovisual stimuli and can perform similarly to younger adults.
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