older adults, Sheridan Elder Research Centre
Driving allows older adults to remain independent. However, age-related changes in visual and cognitive processes can have an adverse impact on driving skills. Research has shown improvements in driving abilities following 10 hours of targeted brain training using Posit Science’s DriveSharp computer program. We sought to determine if i) making this brain training program available in a community setting (the Driving Cognitive Training Centre, DCTC) is an effective means of engaging older drivers in structured cognitive training, and ii) if there are differences in outcomes for those who participate from home instead of at the DCTC.
Over a 2-week period, 10 participants aged 64-85 completed 10 hours (1 hour/day; 5 days/week) of driving-specific brain training (provided by DynamicBrain, the Canadian partner of Posit Science) at home or at the DCTC. Pre and post-training measures were collected including assessments of self-reported driving, objective and self-reported cognition and training-related motivation. Subjectively reported positive changes following training for both groups included better peripheral vision, increased awareness and focus level. Participants attending the DCTC felt that the commitment they made to a community centre motivated them to complete their daily training; they also appreciated having better equipment, fewer distractions, and staff assistance on-hand. Those who participated from home primarily cited the benefit of convenience.
The DCTC was an effective community model, particularly for those individuals who did not have access to appropriate equipment and assistance at home, and may also encourage program adherence. Future directions to engage individuals in community-based programming will be discussed.
Sheridan Elder Research Centre (SERC)
Peer Reviewed/Refereed Publication
This work was funded by a contribution from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC).
Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.
Original Publication Citation
Owsik, M., Camino, P., Fanni, F., Spadafora, P., & Tsotsos, L. E. (2014). The Driving Cognitive Training Centre (DCTC): Testing a community-based brain training model for older drivers. Oakville: Sheridan Elder Research Centre (SERC).
Owsik, Marta; Camino, Paulina; Fanni, Frieda; Spadafora, Pat; and Tsotsos, Lia, "The Driving Cognitive Training Centre (DCTC): Testing a Community-based Brain Training Model for Older Drivers" (2014). Publications and Scholarship. 30.