This book provides the latest research and design-based recommendations for how to design and implement a technology training program for older adults in Continuing Care Retirement Communities (CCRCs). The approach in the book concentrates on providing useful best practices for CCRC owners, CEOs, activity directors, as well as practitioners and system designers working with older adults to enhance their quality of life. Educators studying older adults will also find this book useful Although the guidelines are couched in the context of CCRCs, the book will have broader-based implications for training older adults on how to use computers, tablets, and other technologies.
Table of Contents
Introduction and purpose. Continuing care retirement communities and the need for technology training. A prototype study. Complexities of and best practices for implementing technology training in continuing care retirement communities. Value of technology training. Recruiting and retaining older adults in technology training programs. Training decisions. Current needs for technological access and use in continuing care retirement communities. The future of technology use among older adults in continuing care retirement communities. Conclusions and final thoughts. Bibliography. Appendix. Index.
Shelia R. Cotten is a professor in the Department of Media and Information at Michigan State University. She is also the director of the Sparrow/MSU Center for Innovation and Research, and the director of the Trifecta Initiative. Prior to joining Michigan State University in 2013, she was a professor in the Department of Sociology at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. She studies technology use across the life course, and the health, educational, and social impacts of that use. Her current work focuses on identifying the specific pathways by which ICT use benefits older adults, as well as developing new technology-focused interventions designed to enhance the quality of life for older adults. She is a past chair of the Communication and Information Technologies section of the American Sociological Association (CITASA). In 2016, she won the William F. Ogburn Career Achievement Award from the Communication, Information Technologies, and Media Sociology section of the American Sociological Association. She feels very fortunate to have worked with the coauthors on this book, who were all PhD students working with her when she was a faculty member at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. She is also very thankful to all the collaborators, students (past and present), and participants who helped to make this project a success.
Elizabeth A. Yost earned her PhD in medical sociology with a specialization in gerontology at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. She is an assistant professor of sociology at Washington College in Chestertown, MD, where she teaches courses in medical sociology and public health. Her research focuses on quality of life and well-being in older adult populations and the impact of technology on quality-of-life outcomes across the life course. She feels extremely fortunate to have worked with such excellent colleagues on such a fulfilling project over the past 8 years.
Ronald W. Berkowsky earned his PhD from the University of Alabama at Birmingham. He currently works as a postdoctoral associate at the University of Miami School of Medicine. Specifically, he provides assistance in data collection and analysis as well as works as a consultant for the Center on Aging, housed in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences. Most of his efforts are directed toward the Center for Research and Education on Aging and Technology Enhancement (CREATE), a multidisciplinary and collaborative center that examines technology impacts in old age, with projects conducted at the University of Miami, Florida State University, and the Georgia Institute of Technology. His research focuses on the physical, mental, and social impacts of technology in old age and how technology helps or influences health information-seeking. Projects he is currently involved in at the Center on Aging include the development and testing of an updated version of the personal reminder information and social management (PRISM) system, a software application designed as a part of CREATE for older adults to promote connectivity and information-seeking; the testing and assessment of an online suite of programs designed to teach aging adults to better perform technology-based tasks necessary for functional living (e.g., using an ATM, using a cellular phone to fill a prescription); and an examination of the decision-making processes of older adults in technology adoption and what factors (e.g., cognitive cost) affect this process. He feels very fortunate to have had the privilege of working with the coauthors on the research described in this book and is thankful to have worked with an amazing team of researchers and an engaged and exciting group of intervention participants.
Vicki Winstead earned her PhD from the University of Alabama at Birmingham. She currently works as a program manager for several Projects that include developing and using strategies to recognize and manage care-resistant behaviors in residents with dementia in long-term care communities and examining the perceptions of caregivers as they interact with these residents during daily provision of care. She is responsible for coordinating and implementing several different interventions in long-term care communities that test the efficacy of these strategies during the provision of daily oral care. She also serves as a clinical data analyst for these projects. The goal of this research is to translate the findings into training for caregivers in long-term care. Her research focuses on the development of activities that mitigate the effects of the disease process in dementia for residents in various levels of long-term care communities.She specifically plans to develop resources for leisure activities for residents in assisted living with mild cognitive impairment that attenuate the effects of further cognitive decline by building cognitive reserve. This, of course, will include technology! She worked closely with her coauthors on the project referenced in this book for 5 years and describes it as an "opportunity of a lifetime. The experience was enriching for trainer and trainee alike." She believes that spending the amount of time the project required with the wonderful participants of independent and assisted living communities also allowed a glimpse into their daily lives. She found that they met the challenges and limitations of growing older with courage and grace.
William A. Anderson is a research associate in the Division of Preventive Medicine in the School of Medicine at the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB). While finishing his PhD at UAB, he served as the project manager for the ICTs and Quality of Life study. After finishing his PhD, he spent time as a research study manager and qualitative researcher in the Division of Infectious Diseases in the UAB School of Medicine. In this role, he coordinated several local and national research studies looking at the factors associated with engagement and retention in care among people living with HIV/AIDS. In his current role in the Division of Preventive Medicine, he assists researchers within the division with grant proposal and manuscript preparation. His research interests include the system- and societal-level factors affecting healthcare and health inequalities. He fondly remembers his time working with older adults in CCRCs and his collaborators on the ICTs and Quality of Life study.