David Weiss explains why none of us wants to be old

Thursday, June 22, 2017

In a June 22 article in USA Today, Columbia Aging Center faculty member, David Weiss is cited for his work on widely-held aging prejudices: our own.  

An assistant professor of sociomedical sciences and psychology at Columbia’s Mailman School of Public Health, Dr. Weiss’s research has shown that those who don’t fall for the inevitability of aging can “counteract the detrimental and self-fulfilling consequences of negative age stereotypes.

“My research looks at why no one wants to be old,” Weiss said.

“They want to set themselves apart from this negatively viewed age group. They just want to distance themselves from stereotypes. ‘l’m not like the stereotype. I’m different,’ ” he said. “Adults who believe age is just a number showed better memory performance, but adults who believed aging is set in stone and fixed had a decrease in memory performance and a stronger stress reaction.”