Age differences in forgiveness: The role of future time perspective

Sheung-Tak CHENG, Ying-Kit YIM

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlespeer-review

69 Citations (Scopus)


This study investigated whether the age trend in forgiveness is partly attributable to age differences in time perspective. Eighty-nine younger and 91 older adults were randomized into 3 experimental conditions: time-expanded, time-limited, and neutral. They responded to hypothetical offensive scenarios and rated the degree to which they would forgive the perpetrator. Results showed that older adults were more forgiving than younger adults, but regardless of age, those in the time-limited condition were more forgiving than those in the time-expanded or the neutral condition. An Age × Time perspective interaction showed that only in older adults did a time-expanded manipulation lead to lower forgiveness than the neutral condition. Copyright © 2008 American Psychological Association.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)676-680
JournalPsychology and Aging
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2008


Cheng, S.-T., & Yim, Y.-K. (2008). Age differences in forgiveness: The role of future time perspective. Psychology and Aging, 23, 676-680. doi: 10.1037/0882-7974.23.3.676


  • Forgiveness
  • Socioemotional selectivity theory
  • Time perspective


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