The present study investigated changes in aging through facial expression recognition. 79 younger adults
(M = 21.71, SD = 2.40) and 81 older adults (M = 72.54, SD = 4.97) assessed facial expression stimuli
with six basic emotions, including happiness, fear, anger, disgust, sadness, and surprise. The participants
were also tested on their processing speed, crystallized intelligence, and fluid intelligence. The older adults'
performances were lower than those of the younger adults in all six emotions and the patterns of correct
recognition rate for each emotion were similar in both younger and older adults. The decreased
performances for the recognition of facial expressions were related to the decline of cognitive abilities and
crystallized intelligence was a significant predictor. These findings support the idea that the decrease of
cognitive abilities by normal aging affects the deficits of facial expression recognition and suggest that
older adults may have difficulties in social interaction due to declining emotion recognition ability.