Electrophysiological measures of age-related cognitive impairment in humans

David E. Anderson, Olga Taraschenko

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

1 Scopus citations


This chapter reviews clinical and research applications of electroencephalography (EEG) tools for the aging mind and brain. It addresses age-related changes in electrophysiological measures of oscillatory activity essential for neuronal communication. The chapter examines studies on age-related changes of evoked potentials. Waveforms constructed from signal averaging methods are characterized by sequentially alternating positive and negative deflections in EEG voltages - colloquially referred to as event-related potential (ERP) components - that track emerging neural activity associated with stimulus-evoked cognitive processes. According to current ERP studies, age-related compensatory mechanisms occur during relatively later working memory updating stages of cognitive processing, approximately 300 milliseconds after stimulus presentation. The chapter concludes with a discussion of remaining clinical challenges in application of EEG, particularly in delineating normal and abnormal electrographic findings in healthy elderly adults. It also concludes that there are ample opportunities for further experimental and applied neuroscience research in cognitive aging.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationThe Wiley Handbook on the Aging Mind and Brain
Number of pages16
ISBN (Electronic)9781118772034
ISBN (Print)9781118771778
StatePublished - Jun 20 2017


  • Age-related changes
  • Cognitive aging
  • Elderly adults
  • Electroencephalography tools
  • Electrophysiological measures
  • Neuroscience research

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychology(all)


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