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Measurement of Activity in the Elderly: The Activities Checklist

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  29 November 2010

Tannis Y. Arbuckle
Concordia University*
Dolores Pushkar Gold
Concordia University*
June S. Chaikelson
Concordia University*
Steven Lapidus
Concordia University*


This study assessed the reliability and validity of the Activities Checklist (Reid & Ziegler, 1981) as well as its utility for predicting cognitive functioning in the elderly. Data were drawn from two longitudinal projects where elderly subjects had been tested on two occasions approximately five years apart. Test-retest reliabilities were .54 and .43 for the larger (N = 158) and smaller (N = 76) samples respectively. Validity was demonstrated by an age shift towards more passive activities and by positive correlations with education, occupational status, health and well-being. Weighted versions of activity scores were not superior to unweighted versions as predictors of cognitive functioning. For both samples activity levels significantly predicted performance on some cognitive measures. It was concluded that the Activities Checklist is a potentially useful instrument to employ in the study of individual differences in cognitive aging.


Cette étude a pour but l'évaluation de la fidélité et de la validité du Questionnaire d'activités (Reid & Ziegler, 1981) ainsi que la vérification de son utilité comme prédicteur du fonctionnement cognitif des gens âgés. Les sujets proviennent de deux études longitudinales lors desquelles ils ont été testés à deux reprises espacées d'environ cinq ans. La fidélité test-retest est de .54 pour l'échantillon de 158 sujets et de .43 pour celui de 76 sujets. La validité est démontrée par le changement lié à l'âge vers des activités plus passives et par des corrélations positives avec le niveau de scolarité, l'occupation, la santé et le bien-être. Des versions pondérées des scores d'activité ne s'avèrent pas supérieures aux versions non pondérées pour prédire le fonctionnement cognitif. Les niveaux d'activité prédisent la performance à certaines tâches cognitives. Ces résultats suggèrent que le Questionnaire d'activités est un outil potentiellement utile pour étudier les différences individuelles dans le vieillissement cognitif.

Copyright © Canadian Association on Gerontology 1994

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