Decisions in everyday life often require weighing the probability of successfully executing an action (e.g., successfully crossing a street) against potential rewards and punishments. Although older individuals take fewer risks during such motor decision-making scenarios, the underlying mechanism remains unclear. Similar age-related changes in economic decision-making are explained by a decrease in Pavlovian attraction toward reward. However, despite the role of Pavlovian biases in linking action with reward and avoidance with punishment, their impact on motor decision-making is unclear. To address this, we developed a novel app-based motor decision-making task (n=26,532). We found that motor decision-making was subject to Pavlovian influences. Although we found age-related changes for both punishment and reward-based decision-making processes, the most striking effect of ageing was a decrease in the facilitatory effect of Pavlovian attraction on action in pursuit of reward. Using data from an independent economic decision task in the same individuals (n=17,220), we demonstrate similar decision-making tendencies for motor and economic domains across a majority of age groups. Hence, Pavlovian biases play an essential role in not only explaining motor decision-making behaviour but also the changes which occur through normal ageing.
OSF does not support the use of Internet Explorer. For optimal performance, please switch to another browser.
This website relies on cookies to help provide a better user experience. By clicking Accept or continuing to use the site, you agree. For more information,
and information on cookie use.