This study examines age-associated changes in retrieval on a picture-naming task, phonemic and semantic fluency tasks, and the Homophone Meaning Generation Test (HMGT). The sample included 152 Hebrew-speaking adults, half young (mean age 22.75) and half old (mean age 76.05). Groups differed on the picture-naming task and on both verbal fluency tasks, but not on the HMGT. Age explained a greater share of the variance than did education level on these three tests, whereas the opposite pattern of results was seen on the HMGT. We suggest that age-related word finding difficulties are attenuated when performance allows for semantic rather than phonological access.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)515-529
Number of pages15
JournalAging, Neuropsychology, and Cognition
Issue number4
Early online date6 Jan 2012
StatePublished - 1 Jul 2012


  • Category fluency
  • Cognitive aging
  • Homophone meaning generation
  • Language testing
  • Naming
  • Verbal fluency

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology
  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Geriatrics and Gerontology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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