Course Title: CE 8. Cognitive Reserve, From Theory to Intervention


Credit Hours: 1.5


Instructor(s) Yaakov Stern, PhD


Cognitive Reserve, From Theory to Intervention

Abstract & Learning Objectives

The concept of reserve has been put forward to account for individual differences in susceptibility to age-related brain changes and pathologic changes such as those that occur in Alzheimer's disease.  The concept of cognitive reserve suggests that the brain actively attempts to cope with brain damage by using pre-existing cognitive processing approaches or by enlisting compensatory approaches.  Although much work has been done applying the concept of reserve to aging and dementia, it has also been applied to many other conditions. This course address the theory underlying the concept of reserve; epidemiologic evidence; the neural substrate of reserve;  clinical implications; and interventions.

Yaakov Stern, PhD

Yaakov Stern, PhD

Director, Cognitive Neuroscience Division,
Department of Neurology
Professor of Neuropsychology in Neurology, Psychiatry,
Taub Institute and Sergievsky Center
Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons

As a result of participation in this course, the learner will achieve the following objectives:
1) describe the concepts of brain and cognitive reserve, and how reserve may be measured. 
2) discuss the epidemiologic and imaging evidence for cognitive reserve.
3) explain the clinical implications of reserve.

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Speaker Biography

Yaakov Stern is Professor of Neuropsychology in the Departments of Neurology and Psychiatry, as well as the Taub Institute for the Research on Alzheimer’s Disease and the Aging Brain, at Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons. Dr. Stern is chief of the Cognitive Neuroscience Division of the Department of Neurology and directs the post-doctoral training program “Neuropsychology and Cognition in Aging.”

Dr. Stern earned his B.A. in Psychology at Touro College, and his Ph.D. at the Experimental Cognition program of City University of New York.

Dr. Stern’s research focuses on cognition in normal aging and in diseases of aging, particularly Alzheimer’s disease. One strong focus of his research is investigating the concept of cognitive reserve, which addresses the observation that some individuals show more cognitive deficit than others in the face of brain insult. He is also conducting cognitive intervention studies in healthy individuals, and a natural history study of Alzheimer's disease. Dr. Stern’s research approach includes classic neuropsychological and cognitive experimental techniques, with a strong focus on functional imaging. He has published over 450 peer-reviewed papers, numerous chapters, and edited a book on cognitive reserve.