Predictive Outcomes of Executive Function and Emotion Regulation Abilities in Children with Attention Deficit/hyperactivity Disorder

Open Access
Author:
Chernoff, Eva F
Area of Honors:
Psychology
Degree:
Bachelor of Science
Document Type:
Thesis
Thesis Supervisors:
  • Cynthia L Huang Pollock, Thesis Supervisor
  • David A. Rosenbaum, Honors Advisor
Keywords:
  • ADHD
  • Executive Function
  • Emotion Regulation
  • Academic Achievement
  • Socio-emotional Functioning
Abstract:
Objective: Two major deficits associated with ADHD are executive function and emotion regulation but whether these represent similar or divergent constructs, and whether they might predict alternative outcomes is not well understood. The purpose of this study will be to examine the status of executive function and emotion regulation in children with and without ADHD, determine the degree to which they correlate with one another, and whether they have differential predictive power for a range of outcomes. Methods: Children with and without ADHD completed various tasks of executive function, school achievement, and socio-emotional functioning. Parents filled out questionnaires regarding their child’s behaviors of emotion regulation. Results: Children with ADHD performed worse on measures of executive function and emotion regulation. Executive function variables significantly correlated with emotion regulation variables. Executive function performance predicted achievement performance and socio-emotional functioning, while emotion regulation performance only predicted achievement performance. ADHD moderated the relationship between executive function and socio-emotional functioning for working memory and hostile responses and for inhibitory control and questionnaires of social skill. Conclusion: Clinicians, parents, and teachers concerned about weaknesses of children with ADHD should be aware that the development of executive function and emotion regulation is crucial in ADHD populations struggling in academic and social environments and should be taken into consideration when developing effective treatment interventions for children with ADHD