Meeting The Needs Of Students With Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder

1877 words - 8 pages

Several researchers have estimated that Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder effects between 5 and 10% of school aged children (Aguiar, Eubig, & Schantz, 2010; Modesto-Lowe, Danforth, & Brooks, 2008; Schroeder & Kelley, 2009). It is the most frequently diagnosed childhood neurobehavioral disorder (Aguiar, Eubig, & Schantz, 2010). Students with ADHD exhibit developmentally inappropriate levels of hyperactivity, impulsivity, and inattention (Modesto-Lowe, Danforth, & Brooks, 2008). Typically, the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-IV) is used to diagnose ADHD. The DSM-IV classifies ADHD into 3 subtypes: predominately inattentive (ADHD-PI); predominately hyperactive-impulsive (ADHD-PH); and combined (ADHD-C) (Aguiar, Eubig, & Schantz, 2010). In order to be classified with this disorder, students must have exhibited at least six of the symptoms associated with at least one of the subtypes. The symptoms must be in existence for at least six months, occur in two or more settings, and be evident by the age of seven. The symptoms by subtype are as follows:
Inattentive-Disorganized Dimension (ADHD-PI)
1. Fails to five close attention to details or makes careless mistakes in schoolwork, work, or other activities
2. Has difficulty sustaining attention in tasks or play activities
3. Does not seem to listen when directly spoken to
4. Fails to follow through on instructions and fails to finish schoolwork, chores, or work duties
5. Has difficulty organizing tasks and activities
6. Avoids, dislikes, or is reluctant about engaging in tasks that require sustained mental effort
7. Loses things necessary for tasks or activities
8. Gets easily distracted by extraneous stimuli
9. Is forgetful in daily activities
Hyperactivity – Impulsivity Dimension (ADHD-PH)
1. Fidgets with hands or feet or squirms in seat
2. Leaves seat in classroom or in other situations in which remaining seated is expected
3. Runs about or climbs excessively in situations in which it is inappropriate
4. Has difficulty awaiting turn
5. Is “on the go” or acts as if “driven by a motor”
6. Talks excessively
7. Blurts out answers before questions have been completed
8. Has difficulty awaiting turn
9. Interrupts or intrudes on others
Combined Dimension (ADHD-C)
1. At least six symptoms from ADHD-PI and ADHD-PH
(DSM IV as cited in Aguiar, et al., 2010 p. 1652)
While the DSM-IV is regularly used for the diagnosis of ADHD, several theories exist as to the cause of the disorder (Wright, Shelton, & Wright, 2009). Barkley’s Unified Theory proposes that the primary deficit in ADHD is self-control or self-regulation (Rabiner, 2008). Self-regulation is an executive function. Executive functions provide the framework in which human cognitions operate (Wright, et al, 2009). Working memory, response inhibition, error correction, and goal directed behavior are all executive functions that enable an individual to plan the steps needed to attain a goal,...

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