Interesting piece that looks at the precision of judgement as one ages, in this instance precision refers to the confidence that is brought to a given decision. It turns out that as we age we become more confident in believing we know the truth. This leads to a somewhat intractable problem of both overconfidence and an inability to be flexible with your decisions or outlook.
Our more novel findings center on overprecision. We find evidence that precision in judgment increases with age. This result contradicts the proposition that a lifetime of experience, and of being wrong, would dampen the bold claims of confidence to which so many of us are prone. Instead, in this particular case, it appears that older people are more likely to claim that they know the truth. These effect sizes are modest and require substantial sample sizes to detect as statistically significant. Nevertheless, the implications of our finding are potentially important. If people’s confidence in the accuracy of their beliefs increases with age, then we might expect that people become more set in their beliefs, more ideologically extreme, and more resistant to persuasion as they age (Ortoleva & Snowberg, 2015).
It is striking, however, that even with our substantial sample sizes, we do not find any evidence of correlations with age and either overestimation or overplacement. Across our studies, older people were no more likely to claim that they were better than they were (overestimation) or to claim that they were better than others (overplacement). This is important, because it clarifies precisely how confidence changes with age. Interestingly, this result is at odds with the lay stereotype that young people are more likely to overestimate their abilities. We find no evidence to support this notion. While it is possible that young people may not specifically be inclined to overestimate their performance guessing others’ weight, this raises the question of exactly which domains would be most likely to reveal such overestimation. Our results cannot provide guidance on this question, but they do suggest that at least in this one domain, young people are no more likely to overestimate themselves.
More here – Judgment and Decision Making, Vol. 12, No. 1, January 2017, pp. 29-41