Gesundheitsbezogene Informationskompetenzen im Alter

Health-information literacy in old age. Improving adults' health information literacy as a contribution to healthy ageing

Funding: Budgetary funds
Grant Term: 1 year (October 2014-September 2015)
Project Partner: DIE – German Institute for Adult Education1, Bonn
Project Manager: Dr. Anne-Kathrin Mayer (ZPID), Dr. Jens Friebe (DIE)
Project Staff: Dipl.-Psych. Thomas Behm

Project Description


The project aims at acquiring knowledge about health information literacy and health-related information behavior in middle-aged and older adults. Based on its findings, a training program fostering health information literacy will be developed.

The project is based on the assumption that »healthy« ageing is influenced positively by adequate health behaviors, e.g., by a prevention-oriented lifestyle. However, in everyday life, there are many myths and misconceptions about »healthy ageing« which are for example spread by people, by traditional media or websites. In addition, knowledge from the domains of medicine, neurosciences and gerontology is constantly changing. Therefore, the ability to acquire information about »healthy« ageing, to evaluate and weigh this information, and to derive well-founded conclusions about individual health behaviors, may contribute to autonomy in old age as well as »healthy« ageing.

Against this backdrop, in a first project phase the following research questions will be pursued:

  • How could health information literacy, health-related information behaviors, and corresponding information needs be assessed by self report-measures, »objective« tests, and structured interviews?
  • Which training program fostering health information literacy in middle and older adulthood already exist in Germany?

In a subsequent project phase, the results of the first phase will be used to delevop and evaluate a health information literacy training program for middle-aged and older adults.





  • Mayer, A.-K., & Friebe, J. (2015, September).
    Gesundheitsbezogenes Informationsverhalten älterer Erwachsener – ein Beitrag zu gesundem Altern? 4 12. Kongress der Fachgruppe Gesundheitspsychologie, Graz, Österreich.

  • Mayer, A.-K., Friebe, J., & Krampen, G. (2015, February).
    Improving adults' health information literacy as a contribution to healthy ageing – outline of the project GInKA. Symposium of the Leibniz Research Alliance »Healthy Ageing«: Better understanding healthy ageing: A trans- and interdisciplinary research approach, Mannheim.

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Dr. Anne-Kathrin Mayer
Phone: +49 (0)651 201-2930
Fax: +49 (0)651 201-2071
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