Recently Funded Projects

Does Processing Speed Training Still Impact Mobility and Safety for Older Adults after Ten Years?

Lesley Ross, PI

UAB Faculty Development Grant $10,000

The goal of this project is to determine the driving safety trajectories in a sample of community-dwelling older adults. This project is collecting objective state-reported crash records from four states to identify potential risk factors and protective cognitive interventions (such as processing speed, memory, and reasoning training) against prospective crashes across ten years

Trajectories of Driving Behavior and Safety Across Ten Years: Can We Intervene?

Lesley Ross, PI; (K. Ball Center PI)

National Institute on Aging, NIH Roybal Center Pilot Grant    $38,000

Safe and sustainable mobility is essential to maintain independence throughout older age. This project will investigate determinants of self-reported crashes and mobility trajectories across in a large sample of older adults (N=2802).  Additionally, the impact of cognitive interventions on sustained mobility will be investigated.


Why is Processing Speed Training Effective?: Translating Neural Mechanisms into Community-Based Products

Lesley Ross, PI

Center for Clinical and Translational Science Pilot Grant Program   $60,000

Cognitive training can enhance driving safety, mobility, and health in older adults.  In this study (called VINES) Participants who are at-risk for mobility decline are randomized to either one of two cognitive training interventions or a no-contact control group. Neuropsychological and lifestyle behavioral data, as well as fMRI data, will then be used to identify the mechanisms of these interventions.


Feasibility of Speed of Processing Training in Rural, Middle-aged and Older Adults with HIV

David Vance, PI

UAB Center for Aging and Palliative Medicine   $20,000 

In this pilot intervention, middle-aged and older adults will be given the opportunity to use POSIT science software to improve their speed of processing and everyday functioning.  Using a remote intervention like this may be especially effective for those adults who experience a great deal of HIV-related stigma and prefer not to come to laboratory setting for such training.

Neural Correlates of Cognitive Training in Older Adults with Macular Degeneration

Kristina Visscher, PI

Center for Clinical and Translational Science/The Council of University-Wide Interdisciplinary Research Centers            $60,000

The impact of processing speed training on a sample of older adults with and without age-related macular degeneration will be investigated.  This study includes both neural (via fMRI) and behavioral everyday functional assessments both before and after training.

Diabetes and Aging Study of Health (DASH)

PIs: Michael Crowe and Olivio Clay

National Institute on Aging Roybal Center $40,000

The purpose of this project is to examine multiple measures of cognitive function and health literacy in order to determine which are most appropriate for screening in terms of identifying older adults with diabetes who are at greatest risk of negative health outcomes and declines in everyday function.     

Educational Disparities and Cognitive Function in Older Adulthood

PI:  Michael Crowe

National Institute on Aging Deep South Resource Center for Minority Aging Research (RCMAR)   $30,000

The purpose of this project supported by the Deep South Resource Center for Minority Aging Research (RCMAR) and the UAB Roybal Center is to examine the association between indicators of childhood schooling and late-life cognitive function.  Data on quality of education is being obtained by matching participant reports of residence during school years to county-level historical data from Alabama Department of Education reports.

Recent Center Affiliated Publications


Bambara J, Wadley V, Owsley C, Martin R, Porter C and Dreer LE. Family functioning and low vision: A systematic review. Journal of Visual Impairment and Blindness; 103: 137-149, 2009. PMCID: PMC2798155

Bambara JK, Owsley C, Wadley V, Porter C, Martin R and Dreer LE. Family caregiver social problem solving abilities and adjustment to caring for a relative with vision loss. Investigative Ophthalmology and Visual Science;  50: 1585-1592, 2009. PMCID: PMC2771396 

Clay OJ, Edwards JD, Ross LA, Okonkwo O, Wadley VG, Roth DL and Ball KK. Visual function and cognitive speed of processing mediate age-related decline in memory span and fluid intelligence. Journal of Aging Health; 21(4): 547-566, 2009.  PMCID: PMC2828155.

Cross JM, McGwin G Jr, Rubin GS, Ball KK, West SK, Roenker DL and Owsley C. Visual and medical risk factors for motor vehicle collision involvement among older drivers. British Journal of Ophthalmology; 93: 400-404, 2009.  PMCID: PMC2747632.

Edwards JD, Myers C, Ross LA, Roenker DL, Cissell GM, McLaughlin AM, and Ball KK. The Longitudinal Impact of Cognitive Speed of Processing Training on Driving Mobility. The Gerontologist; 9(4): 485-494, 2009. PMCID: PMC2709540.

Edwards JD, Reynolds S, Ross LA and Perkins M. Driving Status and Three-Year Mortality Among Community-Dwelling Older Adults. Journals of Gerontology: Medical Sciences; 64A(2): 300-305, 2009. PMCID: PMC2655033. 

Edwards JD, Lunsman M, Perkins M, Rebok GW and Roth DL. Driving Cessation and Health Trajectories in Older Adults. Journal of Gerontology: Medical Sciences; 64A(12): 1290-1295, 2009. PMCID: PMC2773808.

Edwards JD, Delahunt PB and Mahncke HW. Cognitive speed of processing training delays driving cessation. Journal of Gerontology: Medical Science; 64A(12): 1262-1267, 2009.  PMCID: PMC2773815.

Elliott AF, McGwin G Jr and Owsley C. Health-related quality of life and visual and cognitive impairment among nursing home residents. British Journal of Ophthalmology; 93: 240-243, 2009. PMCID: PMC2745735

Elliott AF, McGwin G Jr and Owsley C.  Vision-enhancing interventions in nursing home residents and their short-term impact on physical and cognitive function. Journal of the American Geriatrics Society; 57: 202-208, 2009. PMCID: PMC2727150

Khoury R, Cross JM, Girkin CA, Owsley C and McGwin G Jr. The association between self-reported glaucoma and Ginkgo biloba use. Journal of Glaucoma; 18: 543-545, 2009.  PMCID in process:  NIHMS85791

Owsley C, McGwin G Jr, Lee PP, Wasserman N and Searcey K. Characteristics of low vision rehabilitation services in the United States. Archives of Ophthalmology; 127: 681-689, 2009. PMCID: PMC2737181

Ross LA, Clay OJ, Edwards JD, Ball KK, Wadley VG, Vance DE, Cissell GM, Roenker DL, and Joyce JJ. Do Older Drivers At-Risk for Crashes Modify Their Driving Over Time? J Gerontology B: Psychology Social Science; 64B(2): 163-170, 2009.  PMCID: PMC2655158.

Swanson MW, McGwin G Jr, Elliott AF, Owsley C. The nursing home minimum data set for vision and its association with visual acuity and contrast sensitivity. Journal of the American Geriatrics Society; 57: 486-491, 2009. PMCID: PMC2671150

Swanson MW, McGwin G Jr, Elliott AF and Owsley C. The association between the nursing home minimum data set for vision and vision-targeted health-related quality of life as assessed by certified nursing assistants. Journal of Optometry; 2:148-154, 2009. 

Wadley VG, Okonkwo O, Crowe M, Vance DE, Elgin JW, Ball KK and Owsley C. Mild cognitive impairment and everyday function: an investigation of driving performance. Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry and Neurology; 22: 87-94, 2009. PMCID: PMC2832580

Wood JM, McGwin G Jr, Elgin J, Vaphiades MS, Braswell RA, DeCarlo DK, Kline LB, Meek GC, Searcey K and Owsley C. On-road driving performance by persons with Hemianopia and Quadrantanopia. Investigative Ophthalmology and Visual Science; 50: 577-585, 2009. PMCID: PMC2745739


Crowe M, Sartori A, Clay OJ, Wadley VG, Andel R, Wang H-X, Sawyer P and Allman R. Diabetes and cognitive decline: investigating the potential influence of factors related to health disparities. Journal of Aging and Health; 22: 292-306, 2010.  PMCID: PMC2837792

Ball K, Ross LA and Viamonte SM. Normal Aging and Everyday Functioning. In T.D. Marcotte and I. Grant (Eds.), Neuropsychology of Everyday Functioning. New York: Guilford Publications.

Elgin J, McGwin G, Wood JM, Vaphiades MS, Braswell RA, DeCarlo DK, Kline LB and Owsley C. Evaluation of on-road driving in people with hemionopia and quadrantanopia. American Journal of Occupational Therapy; 64: 268-678, 2010. PMCID: PMC2745739

Elliott AF, Dreer LE, MCGwin G Jr, Scilley K and Owsley C. The personal burden of decreased vision-targeted health-related quality of life in nursing home residents. Journal of Aging and Health; 22: 504-521, 2010.

Kvale EA, Clay OJ, Ross-Meadows LA, McGee JS, Edwards JD, Unverzagt FW, Ritchie CA and Ball KK. Cognitive speed of processing and functional declines in older cancer survivors: an analysis of data from the ACTIVE trial. European Journal of Cancer Care; 19(1): 110-117, 2010. PMCID: PMC2835340

McGwin G, Khoury R, Cross JM and Owsley C. Vision impairment and eye care utilization among Americans 50 and older. Current Eye Research; 35(6): 451-458, 2010.  PMID 20465437

O’Connor ML, Edwards JD, Wadley VG and Crowe M. Changes in mobility among older adults with Mild Cognitive Impairment. Journal of Gerontology: Psychological Sciences; 65: 306-316, 2010. PMCID: PMC2853603

Owsley C. The vision and driving challenge (editorial). Journal of Neuro-Ophthalmology; 30(2): 115-116, 2010.

Viamonte SM, Vance D, Wadley V, Roenker D and Ball K. Driving-related cognitive performance in older adults with pharmacologically treated cardiovascular disease. Clinical Gerontologist; 33: 109-123, 2010. PMCID: PMC2882795

Wolinsky FD, Mahncke H, Vander Weg MW, Martin R, Unverzagt FW, Ball KK, Jones RN and Tennstedt SL. Speed of processing training protects self-rated health in older adults: enduring effects observed in the multi-site ACTIVE randomized controlled trial. International Psychogeriatrics; 22(3): 470-478, 2010. PMCID: PMC2848284.

Ball, K., Edwards, J. D., Ross, L. A., & McGwin, J., Jr. (2010). Cognitive training decreases risk of motor vehicle crash involvement among older drivers. Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, 58,2107-2113.

Ross, L. A., Anstey, K. J., Kiely, K. M., Luszcz, M. A., Byles, J., & Mitchell, P. (2010). Response Letter to Drs. Callaghan and O’Neill. Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, 58(6), 1213-1214.

Anstey, K. J., Byles, J. E., Luszcz, M. A., Mitchell, P., Steel, D., Booth, H., Browning, C., Butterworth, P., Cumming, R. G., Healy, J., Windsor, T. D., Ross, L. A., Bartsch, L., Burns, R. A., Kiely, K., Birrell, C. L., Broe, G., Shaw, J., & Kendig, H. (2010). Cohort profile: The Dynamic Analyses to Optimise Ageing (DYNOPTA) project. International Journal of Epidemiology,39,44-51.

Crowe M, Allman RM, Triebel K, Sawyer P and Martin R. (2010). Normative performance on an executive clock drawing task (CLOX)         in a community-dwelling sample of older adults. Archives of Clinical Neuropsychology, 25(7), 610-7.

Owsley C and McGwin G Jr. (2010). Vision and driving. (Vision Research Reviews Vision Research)  Visions Research, 50(23),       2348-61.

Wolinsky FD, Vander Weg MW, Unverzagt FW, Willis SL, Marsiske M, Rebock GW, Morris JN, Ball KK and Tennstedt SL. (2010). Does Cognitive Training Improve Internal Locus of Control Among Older Adults? Journal of Gerontology: Social Science, 65(5), 591-8.

Owsley C, McGwin G Jr, Weston J, Stalvey BT, Searcey K and Gerkin CA. (2010). Preliminary evaluation of the InCHARGE program among Older African Americans in rural Alabama. Journal of Health Disparities Research and Practice, 3:115-126.


Ross, L. A., Dodson, J., Edwards, J. D., Ackerman, M. L & Ball, K. K. (in press). Older drivers’ self-appraisal and driving competency. Accident Analysis and Prevention.

Vance, D. E., Fazeli, P. L., Ross, L. A., Wadley, V., & Ball, K. (in press). The effects of speed of processing training on middle-aged and older adults with HIV. Journal of the Association of Nurses in AIDS Care.

Burns, R. A., Butterworth, P., Windsor, T. D., Luszcz, M., Ross, L. A., & Anstey, K. J. (2011). Deriving prevalence estimates of depressive symptoms throughout middle and old age in those living in the community. International Psychogeriatrics, 24, 503-511.

Anstey, K. J., Bielak, A., Birrell, C., Browning, C. J., Burns, R. A., Kiely, K. M.,  Nepal, B., Ross, L. A., Steel, D., Windsor, T. D., and the DYNOPTA team.  (2011). Understanding ageing in older Australians: The contribution of the Dynamic Analyses to Optimise Ageing (DYNOPTA) project to the evidence base and policy. Australasian Journal on Ageing, 30(2), 24-31.

Ross, L. A., Vance, D., Ball, K., Cak, L., Ackerman, M. L., Benz, D., & Ball, D. (2011). Translating laboratory measures to real-world outcomes: Application of the UFOV test in an insurance company setting. Proceedings of the Sixth International Driving Symposium on Human Factors in Driving Assessment, Training and Vehicle Design, 1-7.

Ross, L. A., Browning, C., Luszcz, M. A., Mitchell, P. & Anstey, K. J. (2011). Age-based testing for driver’s license renewal: Potential implications for older Australians. Journal of the American Geriatrics Society,59, 281-285.

In Press

Okonkwo OC, Wadley VG, Ball K, Vance DE and Crowe MG. Dissociations in speed of visual information processing among persons with Mild Cognitive Impairment: Evidence and implications. Aging, Neuropsychology, and Cognition.

Okonkwo OC, Wadley VG, Crowe M, Roenker DL and Ball K. Self-regulation of driving among older adults:  The effects of gender and visual attention. Rehabilitation Psychology. 

University of Alabama at Birmingham - Center for Research on Applied Gerontology
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