• Age differences;
  • Attentional control;
  • Task switching;
  • Interference control;
  • Event-related potential;
  • Standard and reverse Stroop task


We examined age differences in event-related potentials (ERPs) associated with attentional control of task-set selection and response interference by means of a cue-based switching paradigm in which participants performed the color or word Stroop task. The results of ERPs in the cue interval indicated that P3 latencies were slowed for older adults, suggesting age-related slowing in updating currently relevant task sets. Older adults also showed a larger CNV under switching than nonswitching conditions, indicating age differences in maintaining task sets over longer periods of time. The results of target-locked ERPs revealed a negativity to incompatible Stroop trials (Ni) that was prolonged for older adults, suggesting age differences in early conflict processing. Response-locked ERPs showed a negative deflection to incompatible Stroop trials (CRN) only for younger adults, suggesting age differences also in response-related conflict processing.