Rationale: There are evidences that objective as well as subjective memory impairment differs throughout life and differently affect individuals of distinct schooling levels. However, memory is not considered a unitary function and most studies that have dealt with these issues centred on retrospective memory having neglected prospective memory. The present study aims at investigating variations of memory complaints in individuals of different ages using the a Portuguese version of the Prospective and Retrospective Memory Questionnaire (Smith et al., 2000), as well as determining whether these reports vary in healthy adults with high and low schooling levels. This questionnaire enables the investigation of reports of prospective and retrospective, short- and long-term memory, triggered by internal or external cues, and displays reliability and validity considered adequate for an instrument of metamemory evaluation. Information gained from such questionnaires can be used to establish clinical hypothesis and intervention programmes and studies as the one proposed here can contribute with the determination of the role of age and schooling in memory complaints, which is relevant when the rapidly increasing number of elderly in Brazil is considered, a population which is composed in great part by individuals with low schooling. Objetive: The present study aims at determining variations in memory complaints using a Portuguese version of the Prospective and Retrospective Memory Questionnaire - PRMQ; Smith et al., 2000) throughout life in healthy adults, as well as determining possible differences in these complaints between individuals with high and low schooling levels. Methods: Self-reported healthy adults, aged 21 to 70 year with more than 8 years of schooling will respond to a Portuguese version of the PRMQ. They will be categorized into 5 age groups including 100 individuals balanced by gender. Another 200 individuals will be included with less than 4 years of schooling (all literate), 100 of whom will be aged 21 to 30 and 61 to 70. Possible differences in memory complaints will be determined considering different dimensions (retrospective versus prospective memory, short- and long-term memory, triggered by internal and external cues): a) throughout life for individuals with high schooling; and b) young (21 to 30) and elderly (61 to 70) with more than 8 and less than 4 years of schooling. Key words: aging; prospective memory; cognitive reserve; schooling; questionnaire; metamemory.
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