The main aim of this research was to study whether memory dynamics influence older people’s choices to the same extent as younger’s ones. To do so, we adapted the retrieval-practice paradigm to produce variations in memory accessibility of information on which decisions were made later. Based on previous results, we expected to observe retrieval-induced forgetting (RIF) and choice bias in younger and older participants after they engaged in retrieval practice of some studied attributes. In addition, we aimed to compare both age groups’ performance in an experimental condition in which retrieval practice was replaced by reading aloud practice of the same studied items. The results indicated that whereas both age groups showed RIF after performing retrieval practice, biased decisions were observed only in the younger participants. Interestingly, neither older nor younger people showed memory impairment or choice bias in the condition of reading practice. These results extend previous findings and support the idea that, under specific circumstances, elderly people may make better choices than younger people.

Open Access