Gerontological Psychology

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Gerontological Psychology


a branch of gerontology and the psychology of aging, applying the methods and methodology of general psychology to the peculiarities of the psychology and behavior of the elderly and those of extreme old age.

Gerontological psychology has only begun to take form as a separate discipline in the second half of the 20th century, although interest in the psychological changes accompanying aging has long existed. Most important in the appearance of this new discipline were social causes, including the increase, absolute and relative, in the number of persons of advanced age, and the problems connected with their living arrangements and work ability. Gerontological psychology studies the correlations between aging and general physiological and psychophysical characteristics, the psychological peculiarities of behavior, and the personality displacements that result from changes in the character of activity and value orientations. The general aim of gerontological psychology is the search for a means of prolonging the individual’s full and active life.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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