National Archive of Computerized Data on Aging

This study is maintained and distributed by the National Archive of Computerized Data on Aging (NACDA), the aging program within ICPSR. NACDA is sponsored by the National Institute on Aging (NIA) at the National Institutes of Heath (NIH).

Images of Aging in America, 1994 (ICPSR 3094)

Principal Investigator(s): American Association of Retired Persons


During 1994, the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP) conducted a survey to explore the different images, perceptions, and attitudes that Americans have toward aging, how those images have shifted over time, and how perceptions of aging differ among population subgroups. Respondents were asked about the factors that determine when men and women become "old," the best and worst things about being over 65, and problems experienced before and after age 65. Regarding intergenerational conflict, respondents were queried about levels of respect between people over 65 and people younger than 65, influence exerted by retired persons, and the share of government benefits allocated to older persons. Other areas of investigation focused on life satisfaction, health status, anxiety levels, and levels of contact with people aged 65 and older. Demographic characteristics of respondents include age, sex, marital status, living situation, and employment status.

Access Notes

  • The public-use data files in this collection are available for access by the general public. Access does not require affiliation with an ICPSR member institution.


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Study Description


American Association of Retired Persons. Images of Aging in America, 1994. ICPSR03094-v2. Ann Arbor, MI: Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research [distributor], 2016-02-04.

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Scope of Study

Subject Terms:    aging, aging population, attitudes, health status, images, influence, intergenerational conflict, older adults, perceptions, retirees, social contact, United States

Time Period:   

  • 1994

Date of Collection:   

  • 1994

Universe:    Households in the United States.

Data Type(s):    survey data


Sample:    Random telephone survey of 1,200 adults.

Data Source:

personal interviews

Extent of Processing:   ICPSR data undergo a confidentiality review and are altered when necessary to limit the risk of disclosure. ICPSR also routinely creates ready-to-go data files along with setups in the major statistical software formats as well as standard codebooks to accompany the data. In addition to these procedures, ICPSR performed the following processing steps for this data collection:

  • Created online analysis version with question text.


Original ICPSR Release:   2001-03-09

Version History:

  • 2001-05-09 Additional data cleaning was done by ICPSR.

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