Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder is considered a developmental
disorder of age appropriate attention span, impulse control, rule compliance,
and motor restlessness or impulsivity (American Psychiatric Association,
1994). Children who have attention deficit hyperactivity disorder
experience a wider range of behavioral, social, emotional, and educational
difficulties than those without the disorder. A previous study which
examined the same area was by Rapport, Scanlan, and Denney (1999) which
duplicated a study by Ferguson and Horwood (1995) to examine the relationship
between attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and poor academic performance.
Rapport et al. (1999) results were consistent with those of Ferguson and
Horwood's (1995), results which showed that behavior problems do bear a
strong relationship to academic performance. They discovered that
attention problems in children do affect later academic achievement, such
that children with attention problems will be less successful in school
than others without attention problems.
A similar study by
Sagvolden (1999) looked at the altered effects of reinforcers on children
with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. It was demonstrated
that children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder preferred an
immediate reinforcer and could not wait for a delayed reinforcer.
The inattentive and disruptive problems seem to occur the most in situations
with low stimuli or low reinforcers. If a child did not receive immediate
feedback, they would not know how to act properly in the classroom.
The results specifically revealed that children with attention deficit
hyperactivity disorder could not wait for a delayed reinforcer to stay
on task. Meaning, a student with attention problems needs constant
prodding to stay on task because they cannot do it themselves.
This study looked
at the behavior of average children in the classroom to see whether or
not attention problems have a negative effect on children's academic performance.
The goal of this research study was to determine if there is a negative
relationship between inattentive behaviors and academic performance.
participants for the current study included twenty-two third graders from
a public elementary school. There was an even ratio of boys to girls
and all were of different learning capabilities. The children's behavior
was recorded on a chart, which I designed, and the six behaviors used for
the chart were taken from the Connors Teacher Rating Scale (1997).
The six behavior chosen were blurting out, fidgeting, inattentive behaviors,
disturbing other children, getting out of seat, and off task behaviors.
After the consent forms were received from the children's parents the observations
began. Each child was observed in the classroom for six minutes during
one period. At the end of the week each child took a short quiz given
and made by the classroom teacher.
To examine the
relationship between the chosen behaviors and academic performance a series
of bivariate correlations were completed . The results of the study
revealed that there was a significant negative relationship observed
between the total number of behaviors, blurting out, fidgeting, inattentive
behaviors and quiz scores. There was no significance found between
disturbing other children, getting out of seat, off task behaviors and
The results of
the present study indicated that certain behaviors affect the academic
outcome more than other behaviors. It means that inattentive behaviors
will negatively effect a students academic performance. If a child
does have attention problems then there academic performance will suffer.
These findings can be applied to further research to determine the effect
it has throughout a person's life.
- It offers information on living with ADD/ADHD: causes, treatment, interventions,
and coping strategies.
of Mental Health - National Institute of Mental Health publication
symptoms, co-existing conditions,
and possible causes, as well as treatment and education options of ADHD.
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