Welcome to the home page for the The Adult Learning Lab at the University of Illinois! The focus of our research is adult age differences in learning and language processing. Adult development brings differential patterns of growth, loss, and stability in our capacities for mental activities. Consequently, the way in which we best learn new things changes as we move through adulthood. Our research is funded by NIH National Institute on Aging and the Department of Education Institute for Educational Sciences. Currently, we have three major threads of research:
Adult Literacy & Language Processing
We never stop learning to read. Our research investigates the component processes of reading among adults across the spectrum of skills.
We are examining how we adapt our reading strategies in later life to be effective learners when we read. Topics include: attentional allocation during reading, memory monitoring, learning heuristics, and the effects of knowledge.
Cognitive Interventions and Pathways to Resilience
Senior Odyssey is a community-based program in which seniors engage in team-based competition in problem solving. We have shown that engagement in this program produces benefits in improving divergent thinking, which is an important aspect of creativity – and it's a lot of fun!
We are currently examining the benefits of literacy engagement for lifelong cognitive health.