When we search for something in Google, there can only be two ways – we either give up or continue the search until we achieve our desired results (or until we are satisfied with the answer). Whatever may be the case, there is a new study conducted by University of Miami revealing that younger people are more likely analytical when researching for answers compared to older people.
The research asked sixty adults from ages eighteen to eighty five to complete series of cognitive ability tests. These tests can measure the skills of every respondent from reasoning ability, processing time and executive function.
The participants were asked to research answers using the internet. The questions revolve around health problems. The researchers then collated their responses based on their cognitive ability tests results, age and their internet experience.
The researchers found out that younger participants and those participants who scored high on the tests use analytical approach through manipulating the key words in search engines (like Google) until they are satisfied with the answer or until they achieve their desired results. It does not mean that older participants did not get their desired answers.
Older participants only took longer to complete the task. Their search were more efficient plus their answers were more precise than the younger ones. The study hopes to increase the search power of engines to cater to users with decline of cognitive abilities. The search engines should acknowledge that searching for health-related answers could be challenging for many individuals especially for older adults.
We can read the study in the Journal of Cognitive Engineering and Decision Making.