You’re never too old to learn something new. These days, learning a new skill and keeping the brain active has never been easier for older adults. A study by the Rush Memory and Aging Project showed that seniors who are cognitively active were less likely to develop Alzheimer’s disease and other types of dementia than those who did not exercise their brains.
In addition to stimulating the brain and helping to enhance intellectual wellness, these pursuits are often social endeavors that can provide as sense of involvement and belonging in the community as well as helping to avoid feelings of isolation.
There are many excuses people use to keep themselves from learning new things, such as it’s not worth the effort, it’s too expensive, or it’s too hard. But educational opportunities are more abundant than you might realize, both in your community and in the digital world.
- Libraries, senior centers, and local retirement communities likely offer courses or seminars—and often at no charge. These offerings may be held in partnership with local colleges and provide a more convenient way to access an in-depth look at a favorite or new subject.
- Local colleges and universities may offer the opportunity for waived tuition or scholarships for older adults pursuing either credit or noncredit courses.
- Auditing a course provides the social and intellectual benefits without the stress of exams, homework, and high costs.
- Online courses are convenient for getting access to information without having to leave your home. And they can still provide the social benefits of an in-person class through online discussions.
Growing our minds and learning something new doesn’t have to end with retirement. Find what interests you and pursue greater knowledge!