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Research Article Open Access
The study's goal was to examine the influence of postsecondary education (PSE) in the form of academic courses at the School of Education, Bar-Ilan University, on the cognitive performance of adults with intellectual disability (ID). The sample included adults who participate in PSE (N=21; CA=26-59) and a control group of adults who participate in leisure activities, but not in PSE (N=28; CA=25.5-59). The Participation in Cognitively-stimulating Activities Questionnaire was used. The participants rated their participation in cognitively-stimulating activities during the week. These were grouped into five main activities: Table games, watching TV, reading, using technological devices, participating in PSE. A crystallized and fluid battery was administered. Mixed regression with chronological age, etiology, and participation in the five main activities as independent variables indicated that participation in PSE contributed to semantic fluency, homophones and the Raven matrices. Path analysis suggested that the five main activities predict performance on the crystallized and fluid tests. The opposite model was insufficient. The findings support the Compensation Age Theory and the Cognitive Activity Theory for populations with ID with/without DS. Their cognitive performance is determined not only by age and etiology, but also by lifestyle, such as participation in cognitively-stimulating activities, and especially PSE.
Postsecondary academic courses, Contribution, Adults with ID, Crystallized and fluid tests, Cognitive Activity Theory, Intellectual Disability, Child Psychopathology, Developmental Psychopathology