Weaver, who received a 2019 National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship in support of her doctoral work, is specializing in Human Development in Context (HDiC). Jaeggi serves as her advisor.
Jaeggi studies training and transfer, individual differences in working memory capacity and executive control, as well as the nature of working memory limitations across the lifespan. She directs UCI's Working Memory and Plasticity (WMP) Lab. Jaeggi is a fellow of the Center for the Neurobiology of Learning and Memory and holds a courtesy appointment in the Department of Cognitive Sciences in UCI's School of Social Sciences.
Research supporting cognitive reserve theory suggests that engaging in a variety of cognitive, social, and physical activities may serve as protective factors against age-related changes in mental functioning, especially if the activities are cognitively engaging. Individuals who participate in a variety of cognitive activities have been found to be more likely to maintain a higher level of cognitive functioning and be less likely to develop dementia. In this study, we explore the relationship between engaging in a variety of activities and cognitive performance amongst 206 healthy older adults between the ages of 65-85. Age and years of education were found to be the most significant predictors of a global composite representing cognitive performance, consistent with previous work linking these variables to age-related changes in cognition and the cognitive reserve. We interpret these results to suggest that age and education are better predictors of global cognitive performance in older adults than self-reported activity engagement.