Chapter Five: Personenvironment interactions and optimal aging
• Competence involves five distinct domains
o Sensory-perceptual functioning
o Motor skills
o Cognitive skills
o Not just these but also how you deal with these. i.e. losing
• Environments: can be physical demands, interpersonal
• Lawton and Nahemov: competence depends on environmental press (Chart in lecture
notes & text)
o If you have skill set and competence to deal with pressure, you rise to the
occasion and do better
Behaviour can either be observable or affect
The extent a person experience a decline in health or any of the above
competence, the less able they are to cope with demands of the
There is an adaption level that acts as a balancing act
When in blue stripes we don’t feel out of place or feel like we’re struggling
So we need to either boost confidence and competence or change
environmental pressure in order to adapt well and cope better
• Kahana: people with particular needs search for environments that meet them best
o Pros and cons of what university to go to?
o Someone with a physical disability…their house would be wheelchair accessible,
o Elderly person needs to relocate to an assisted-living facility
When your needs are matched with environment, you feel happy, efficacy.
When unmatched, stress, unease. If we see that we have limits in an environment then you go to a live-in
• In that case, you don’t have much personal freedom
o If you believe that you are forced to go into a retirement
home, you will be stressed because you feel as though
you have no other options
• Lazarus: stress and coping framework. Schooler improved this mode.
o Situations can be evaluated and identify threats as
• Coping response to that. Positive or negative?
• How do we feel about that? Do we gain from it? Or decrease our
effectiveness by negatively coping.
• How do we cope with stress? Do we relish it or get swamped?
Can you benefit from it? Is keeping busy beneficial?
• Is the stress irrelevant to you? If you perceive stress as
completely irrelevant it won’t have an impact on your coping ideas.
o Is there a positive outcome to all the three?
• The Loss continuum concept:
o Children leaving
o Loss of Social role
o Loss of income
o Loss of spouse or friends
o Loss of sensory acuity
o Loss of mobility caused by poor health
This concept is intriguing because some people look at these as negative
but they can be seen as positive. It depends on your perspective • Change their bedroom to a nice study, it doesn’t have to be
If you see these as negative, your world gets smaller. Your home and
neighbourhood takes on more of an importance and is more central to
your life. Usually shrinks down to a one block radius. So what’s near you?
• Beyond the one block is only for special occasions.
• So these don’t need to be losses. Moderate them and deal with
• Common theoretical themes and everyday competence:
o Range of activities you can do above and below the idea if they are essential for
o Necessary to determine whether an elderly person can take care of themselves
• Living in Long-term care facilities:
o Kinds of long-term care facilities
5% of men and 10% of women over 65
23% of men and 35% of women over 85
• These are twice the rate or US
Retirement homes: some supervision but minimal healthcare. Private
owned, run for profit
Nursing homes: moderate high levels of care, private or private not-for-
profit, government subs