How the mind is ageing?

Czesław S. Nosal


The process of cognitive aging in global sense can be characterised by changes of the fluid and crystallised intelligence. In the context of this explanation the basic question is which cognitive functions and regulatory mechanisms play the basic role of the determinants for cognitive aging. Probable, mechanism of associative memory play a central role in top-down direction of cognitive processing. This type of memory connect the resources/networks of long term memory with the current processing in working memory. Another set of mechanisms concerns with bottom-up direction based on procedural memory, which is fundamental for the functioning of the mind as whole (Tulving theory,1985). Unfortunately, our knowledge about associative memory and its relations to working and procedural memory is incomplete and unclear. The importance of associative memory are partly, empirically supported by classic research on decreasing the cognitive components of intelligence aging, since the fluid and crystallized intelligence where discovered (Horn, Cattell, 1967). Changes of the mind functioning and its cognitive growth/aging can be characterised as a complex chain from primary, biologically determined mind, through Piagetian and Vygotsky’s type of mind to relatively balanced mind.


cognitive aging; general intelligence; fluid and crystallized intelligence; memory system; working memory; associative memory; scaffolding theory

Full Text:

PDF (Polish)