Subjective Age Moderates the Relationship Between Global Cognition and Susceptibility to Scams

Gali H. Weissberger, Aaron C. Lim, Laura Mosqueda, Annie L. Nguyen, Laura Fenton, S. Duke Han

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This study examined the interactive effect of subjective age on the relationship between global cognition and susceptibility to scams. Sixty-five participants underwent an assessment of global cognition (Mini Mental State Examination; MMSE), reported their perceived age (i.e., subjective age), and responded to a self-report questionnaire assessing scam susceptibility. A main effect of global cognition on scam susceptibility was found (p =.028); there was no main effect of subjective age (p =.819). An interaction between global cognition and subjective age was found (p =.016). Examination of conditional effects demonstrated that the relationship between cognition and scam susceptibility was not significant amongst those with subjective ages below one standard deviation of the mean, but was significant for those whose subjective ages fell around or above the mean. Findings suggest that individuals with older subjective ages may be particularly vulnerable to the negative effects of lower cognition on scam susceptibility.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Applied Gerontology
Early online date7 Feb 2024
StateE-pub ahead of print - 7 Feb 2024

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© The Author(s) 2024.


The author(s) disclosed receipt of the following financial support for the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article: This work was supported by the National Institute on Aging [grant numbers 1RF1AG068166 and K24AG081325 to SDH, T32AG000037 to ACL, K01AG064986 to ALN]. The authors gratefully thank the Han Research Lab staff and study participants. Some participants from the present study were recruited with the help of the Alzheimer’s Prevention Registry. The Alzheimer’s Prevention Registry is supported by a grant from the National Institute on Aging (R01AG063954). The Alzheimer’s Prevention Registry has been supported by the Alzheimer’s Association, Banner Alzheimer’s Foundation, Flinn Foundation, Geoffrey Beene Gives Back Alzheimer’s Initiative, GHR Foundation, and the state of Arizona (Arizona Alzheimer’s Consortium). The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the named funders.

FundersFunder number
National Institute on Aging1RF1AG068166, K01AG064986, R01AG063954, T32AG000037, K24AG081325
Alzheimer's Association
Flinn Foundation
Arizona State University
Banner Alzheimer’s Foundation
GHR Foundation


    • cognition
    • financial exploitation
    • older adults
    • scam
    • subjective age


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