Trialing an online intervention to improve retirement planning goal setting and goal specificity

Joanne Kaa Earl, Bianca Burbury

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    4 Citations (Scopus)
    69 Downloads (Pure)


    Purpose: Time perspective (TP) is the term used to describe people's preferences to focus on the past, present, and the future. Previous research demonstrates a link between TP and retirement planning. The objective of this study was to evaluate a TP-based online training intervention to improve retirement planning emphasizing the accumulation of resources. Patients and methods: Twenty-two (M=59.41 years) working and fully retired participants were compared to a control group of 18 (M=56.67 years) participants. The intervention included three separate modules delivered online at the rate of one per week over a 3-week testing session. Outcomes focused on retirement goals and goal specificity. Results: When compared to the control group, subjects in the intervention improved the number of goals relating to the accumulation of health (F(1,35)=10.15, P<0.01, 95% CI [0.28, 2.77]) and emotional resources (F(1,35)=5.16, P<0.05, 95% CI [-0.22, 2.37]). Goals relating to the accumulation of health resources also became more specific within the experimental group when compared to the control group and a significant interaction was recorded (F(1,38)=15.78, P<0.01, 95% CI [0.33, 1.74]). Similar interactions between the control and experimental groups were reported for the accumulation of cognitive resources (F(1,38)=13.15, P<0.01, 95% CI [0.28, 1.96]) and for emotional resources (F(1,38)=7.39, P<0.01, 95% CI [0.00, 1.50]). Qualitative feedback included recommendations to improve engagement by using more activities, providing clearer navigation instructions and avoiding the use of animation. Conclusion: Applying a TP-based framework to the design of an online training intervention helped improve the accumulation and specificity of emotional and health resources for retirement. The study contains a number of theoretical and practical recommendations informing the design of future retirement planning interventions.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)419-425
    Number of pages7
    JournalClinical Interventions in Aging
    Publication statusPublished - 21 Feb 2019

    Bibliographical note

    Copyright the Author(s) 2019. Version archived for private and non-commercial use with the permission of the author/s and according to publisher conditions. For further rights please contact the publisher.


    • resource accumulation
    • planning behavior
    • retirement
    • time perspective
    • retirement resources inventory


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