Instructions for using the Graceful Aging Scale:
You first identify two elder people by observation. You pick one person who you think would be in the upper part of the scale and one in the lower part. After you pick the two people, use the scale to assess the two people. You read the statement to your subject, and ask him/her to rank him/herself. For example, “1. Maintains social utility, open to new ideas, cares about others (within the limits of physical health 0-3”. If your subject feels the statement describes her perfectly, assign a 3 to her. If your subject feels the statement does not describe her at all, assign a 0 to her. If your subject feels somewhat in between, assign 1 or 2 to her. Then add the numbers together for all six statements.
The summary at the end of the scale is for you to interpret the results. For example, if a person gets 14 points. This results means, “13-15 = Unusually vigorous aging. Meets almost all of the criteria for successful aging and beloved by physician and grandchildren.” If a person gets 3 points, this result means “0-3 = Moderate depression, complaining, dependency, rigidity, withdrawal, timidity, self-centered, unable to accept old age. The kind of elderly person doctors don’t like and that young relatives withdraw from.”
The Graceful Aging Scale:
1. Maintains social utility, open to new ideas, cares about others (within the limits of physical health) 0-3
13-15 = Unusually vigorous aging. Meets almost all of the criteria for successful aging and beloved by physician and grandchildren.
10-12 = An old age adjustment that the rater would be content to have at 75.
7-9 = Real strengths, but some serious limitations.
4-6 = So-so adjustment — fits the young person’s stereotype of old age. More rigid and discontented than otherwise. Fails many of the above criteria.
0-3 = Moderate depression, complaining, dependency, rigidity, withdrawal, timidity, self-centered, unable to accept old age. The kind of elderly person doctors don’t like and that young relatives withdraw from.
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