July 13

Facts on Aging: Take the Quiz!

Have You Taken the Quiz on Aging?

Have you ever thought about what you think about aging?

Are you afraid of how aging will affect your body, mind or lifestyle?

Have you feared illness or dreaded doctors visits for yourself or a parent?

How we feel about aging is often shrouded in mystery, myths and false perceptions that can be easily cleared up with the right information. But how do we even figure out what we feel about aging in the first place?

This question has been around for a while now.

Back in 1977 Erdman Palmore created a landmark Facts on Aging Quiz, which appeared in two issues of The Gerontologist (1977; 1981). The initial version of the Facts on Aging Quiz was developed at University of Missouri Kansas City. The Quiz was authored by Linda Breytspraak, Ph.D., Burton Halpert, Ph.D., and Liz Kendall, M.A.

A current revision of that initial quiz was authored by Linda Breytspraak, PhD, and Lynn Badura, B.A., Graduate Certificate in Gerontology. Many of the questions are related to or taken from Palmore’s original quiz.

Breytspraak and Badura’s quiz is helpful in understanding attitudes regarding aging.

The current quiz consists of 50 questions, and the quiz takes approximately 20 – 30 minutes to complete. This includes answering the questions and also reading explanations of the correct answers. These explanations are one of the keys to the helpfulness of the quiz.

Not only do we better understand our own perspectives regarding aging, but we are given clear statistics and explanations of the reality of aging.

Some of the subjects covered in the quiz include mental health issues such as:

  • Depression
  • death-related anxiety
  • happiness
  • personality over time


Some of the physical health issues addressed include:

  • Alzheimer’s disease
  • sleep habits
  • memory
  • osteoporosis
  • heigh
  • sexual interest
  • bladder health


The quiz also addresses lifestyle factors and life transitions including:

  • retirement
  • caring for grandchildren
  • volunteering
  • substance/alcohol use
  • how we define “old age” both individually and as a society
  • social security benefits
  • safe driving
  • one’s work ability as one ages


The Facts on Aging Quiz is helpful for anyone, younger or older, for exploring our ideas about aging and to better understand the realities of aging, which are not all negative or discouraging.

You can take the quiz here.

After taking the quiz and reading the answers/explanations, it might be helpful to talk with anyone in your life about the myths of aging, the misconceptions about getting older and the attitudes we all share regarding the elderly. Conversations lead to better understanding for everyone.

The quiz has been offered to anyone for educational purposes as long as the quiz is properly cited as follows:

Breytspraak, L. & Badura, L. (2015). Facts on Aging Quiz (revised; based on Palmore (1977; 1981)). Retrieved from http://info.umkc.edu/aging/quiz/.



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