Maybe you think this is a cliché—telling someone that they’re “never too old” to learn—but it’s true!
Midlife in the United States, or Midus, is an ongoing study that more than 7,000 Americans ages 25-74 have participated in since it was first started in 1995. Midus is looking at how behavioral, psychological, and social factors influence how people function as they age, especially as they enter midlife, defined as age 40.
The New York Times recently reported on Midus’ discoveries about how education affects aging. It’s really true: an educated mind keeps stimulating the brain and can delay age-related mental decline.
Midus found this is most dramatic in middle-aged people who stay mentally active, even if they did not attend college. Those who spent time reading, writing, attending lectures, and even doing puzzles were able to keep up with their college-educated peers.
People with college-level education develop a kind of mental shield that slows the brain’s aging process by up to ten years. By the time they reach their 40s, college-educated people can draw upon their education and experience in areas such as decision-making, strategy, and motivation. They often have better-developed vocabulary and more exposure to culture, which can give them advantages over younger, equally educated people facing the same challenges.
Midus participants took lots of test to measure intelligence, understanding, and verbal and math skills. According to the Times, “the more years of school a person had, the better he or she performed on every test.” Educated people had the most consistent scores as well.
So if you’re thinking about returning to school, consider this:
If you think you’re too old to go to school, think again. The experiences you bring to class (and hopefully, share with your classmates—and yes, you can do that online!) can give you unexpected expertise and advantages.
At Anthem College Online, your experience is valued and appreciated. Take a look at what you can study online with us. Our classes are interactive and engaging. You just might find that your background is a great fit for one of our programs!