The National Institutes of Health (NIH) has issued a request for applications (RFA) for scientists interested in designing and implementing a digital infrastructure centered around the use of mobile devices for monitoring cognitive abilities across the lifespan.
This call, led by the National Institute on Aging (NIA), a primary funder of psychological science research, will support development of monitoring apps on Android and iOS operating systems and will help coordinate the validation and norming of these apps.
In outlining the purpose of this initiative, the RFA indicates that “recent work has demonstrated both that declines in normal cognitive ability begin to occur by age 30, and that pathological processes related to the onset of Alzheimer’s disease (AD) may also begin in midlife if not before, which makes it highly desirable to be able to measure even subtle cognitive decline in midlife. Currently, however, there are formidable challenges to estimating cognitive trajectories in midlife relating to the sensitivity of measures, the expense and participant burden of ‘gold standard’ cognitive testing, and confounds between the negative effects of aging and improvements related to repeated test exposure.”
NIA believes that monitoring with mobile devices might help overcome these challenges, and intends to commit $13.5 million over five years with the goal of increasing scientific understanding in this area. NIA will support this research via a Cooperative Agreement, a type of award in which NIH staff are partners in the conduct and administration of the scientific research.
Those interested in applying should submit a letter of intent to NIA by October 2, 2017.
Interested scientists can read the NIH RFA (RFA-AG-18-012) by clicking here. And you can read more about NIA’s support of psychological science by clicking here.