Variable Details

Available Studies

MAP, MARS, LATC

Scaled? 

Not Scaled

Variable Type 

Cross-Sectional

Variable Name 

ma_adult_cogact_freq

Categories

Lifestyle

Cognitive activity - middle age
Frequency of participation in cognitively stimulating activity in middle (adult) age - Average of 9 items

This variable is only available in MAP, MARS, and LATC.

Middle adult age cognitive activity is assessed using a 9-item self-report scale issued at baseline. Participants are asked how often they engaged in cognitively stimulating activities at the age of 40 or from age 30 to 40. Items include reading, visiting a museum, attending theater/concert, visiting a library, reading newspapers, reading magazines, reading books, writing letters, and playing games.

Participants are asked to rate the items on a 5-point scale. Values for items 4-9 are flipped so that higher values reflect more frequent participation (see table below). The composite measure ranges from 1 to 5 and is the mean of the individual Item scores, with higher scores indicating greater cognitive activity.

Participants are asked the following questions:

  1. When you were 40, about how much time did you spend reading each day?
  2. From age 30 to 40, how many times did you visit a museum?
  3. From age 30 to 40, how many times did you attend a concert, play, or musical?
  4. From age 30 to 40, how often did you visit a library?
  5. When you were 40, how often did you read newspapers?
  6. When you were 40, how often did you read magazines?
  7. When you were 40, how often did you read books?
  8. When you were 40, how often did you write letters?
  9. When you were 40, how often did you play games like checkers or other board games, cards, puzzles, etc.?

Response choices for each item:

Value Item 1 Items 2-3 Items 4-9 (flipped)
1 None Never Once a year or less
2 Less than one hour 1-2 times Several times a year
3 One to less than two hours 3-9 times Several times a month
4 Two to less than three hours 10-19 times Several times a week
5 Three or more hours More than 20 times Every day/almost every day

Note: The variable is calculated if at least half of the items are non-missing.


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