In recent years
In recent years, there has been a significant increase in children being diagnosed with ADD/ADHD (Hill, 2011). According to previous research, ADHD symptoms cause problematic behaviors in the classroom; which may or may not be linked to higher levels of aggressive behaviors within those with ADD/ADHD than those who do not( Hill, 2011). In the article, the researchers state that aggressive and defiant behaviors seem to be linked to ADD/ADHD (Hill, 2011). Furthermore, children with ADD/ADHD are also known to have lack of self-control which in turn can lead to unintended aggressive behaviors towards other children. Hill (2011) proposed a hypothesis that children with ADHD will present stronger tendencies for negative behaviors than children without ADHD.
In order to test the hypothesis the researchers randomly selected 43 students in preschool, first grade, and eight grade classrooms from Clovis Christian School (Hill, 2011). The teachers of each class were given a checklist that had two columns: “children who display ADD/ADHD tendencies and children who do not display ADD/ADHD tendencies” (Hill, 2011). The teachers were informed that whenever a child showed aggressive behaviors they would record it under “Prevalence of Aggression and Defiance in Children with ADD/ADHD Tendencies” (Hill, 2011). These observations took place for five days.
Based on the observations, the results proved Hill’s (2011) hypothesis that there is a correlation between aggressive behaviors and children with ADD/ADHD symptoms. This tells us that children who have ADD/ADHD are more prone to acting out and showing aggressive behaviors in the classroom. In lecture, we discussed that aggressive behaviors are behaviors with the intention to harm someone who is trying to avoid the harm. However, the article takes us beyond this knowledge and clarifies that children with ADD/ADHD may not intend on acting aggressively; rather this behavior is due to the lack of self-control that is caused be ADHD.
In the article researcher Bloh aimed to discover if training can improve the lack of self-control that children with ADHD exhibit. The article states that lack of self-control is associated with impulsive behaviors, which in turn can causes individuals to not consider the consequences of their actions (Bloh, 2010). The Bloh (2010) states that there has been previous research done to increase self-control by implementing delayed reward training. Bloh (2010) aimed to discover whether self-control training in ADHD participants would increase the time they would wait for a reward. In addition, the researcher aimed to discover if the desired behavior of the participants increased due to being in a controlled setting.
A multiple baseline study was conducted which consisted of three African American children, Richard (Medicated), Bob (Not-medicated), and Vincent (Not-medicated) who lived in foster care. There were three baselines in the experiment: natural baseline, choice baseline, and a self-control baseline (Bloh, 2011). In each baseline experiment the children were separated from each other. The natural baseline asked each child to choose a food related reinforcer, which was placed on the table in front of each child. Each child was told to wait as long as possible before eating and once they could not wait any longer they were able to eat the food. The time that each child waited was timed and recorded, and was used as a comparison later on in the self-control training baseline (Bloh, 2011). In the choice baseline each child was given an option of receiving a smaller reward immediately, or receiving a larger reward but would require them to wait for it. The amount of time the participant had to wait if they chose the larger reward was six times as long as their natural baseline (Bloh, 2010). The choice baseline experiment ended after the child chose the larger reward and waited the required time for four sessions (Bloh, 2010). In the self-control training participants were asked if they want their small reward now or a larger reward after they played a game. If the participant chose the larger reward they would play a puzzle game for four sessions. The time that each session took would increase by 6 seconds for Vincent, 10 seconds for Richard, and 3 seconds for Bob, until all four sessions were completed and the child received their reward (Bloh, 2010).
Based on the data, the results showed that each child chose the larger reward over the smaller reward in each of the baselines. However, they did show an increase in self-control from the self-control training. These results mean there could have been possible limitations in the study such as the participants were not impulsive when this study began (Bloh, 2010). This study takes us beyond our current knowledge of self-control in the sense that results may not follow stereotypes. Although the stereotype tells us that the children will impulsively chose the immediate reward that is not always the case.
Furthermore, in the article, the researchers aimed to discover the relationship between children with ADHD and conflicts with their peers as well as the role of aggressive behaviors. According to the article, children who exhibit ADHD tend to be rejected by their peers and have a tendency to have low social skills (Ortego, Rabaglietti, Scholte ; Zucchettii, 2014). The researchers conducted a study consisting of 334 children between the ages of 8-10 from northwest Italy’s primary school. The participants were given a questionnaire to complete, which took the students about one hour to complete; in addition, the teachers of each classroom were also given a questionnaire to complete which asked them to assess ADHD symptoms of each child (Ortego, Rabaglietti, Scholte & Zucchettii, 2014). The ADHD Rating Scale for Teachers, SDAI, was used in order to assess ADHD symptoms within the participants on a scale of 0-3; with 3 being ADHD symptoms are almost always present within the child. The scale consisted of an eighteen-item checklist with ADHD symptoms, with the intended purpose of screening. (Ortego, Rabaglietti, Scholte & Zucchettii, 2014).
In addition aggressive behaviors, emotional and behavioral instability, and best friend conflicts were also assessed. Aggressive behaviors were assessed using a fifteen-item list of behaviors such as, “Punching, pushing, kicking, etc” where participants would rank on a scale of 1, almost never, to 3, frequently, how many times they participated in said behavior. (Ortego, Rabaglietti, Scholte & Zucchettii, 2014). Emotional and behavioral instability was assessed using a seventeen-item list which consisted of emotional responses such as “I scream out” “I am not quiet” in order to examine their self-control pertaining to their moods. Again, the 1-3 scale was used in order to rank each statement. Finally, best friend conflicts were assessed using an Italian version of the “Conflict Scale of the Friendship Quality Scale” (Ortego, Rabaglietti, Scholte & Zucchettii, 2014). The participants were asked to rank how they feel about fighting with a best friend, how disagreeing makes them feel, and teasing on a scale of 1, not at all, to 4, very much (Ortego, Rabaglietti, Scholte & Zucchettii, 2014).
The results showed that there are gender differences and boys present more ADHD symptoms than girls. The researchers decided to account for this difference by creating a data table that splits the boys and the girls up according to their acquired data. However, aggressive behaviors and emotional and behavioral instability played a mediating role in best friend conflicts for both boys and girls (Ortego, Rabaglietti, Scholte & Zucchettii, 2014). The data confirms that ADHD symptoms are correlated to best friend conflicts. Specifically, best friend conflicts in boys were seen with hyperactive symptoms but not ADHD symptoms; which was the exact opposite for best friend conflicts in girls (Ortego, Rabaglietti, Scholte & Zucchettii, 2014). These results mean that children with ADHD could encounter best friend conflicts if placed under stressful situations, ultimately leading to aggressive and emotional instable behaviors. This article expands on what we discussed in class about aggressive behaviors, and how in order for a behavior to be aggressive it must be intentional. However, this article clarifies that it is not always the case in children with ADHD. A possible explanation is that these children tend to display these aggressive behaviors because of their social cognitive processes that were not fully developed (Ortego, Rabaglietti, Scholte & Zucchettii, 2014).
In light of this, in the article, the researchers aimed to discover the relationship between ADHD symptoms, aggression, and rejection by peers (Evans et al., 2015). A study was conducted consisting of 200 students, 104 of them being male and 96 being female; where all data was reported from the students’ teachers based on gender and age. Second period teachers were specifically chosen due to the fact that they knew the students for a longer period of time since they taught “core academic classes” (Evans et al., 2015). ADHD symptoms were assessed using the “Disruptive Behavior Disorder Checklist”, a ranking scale that consisted of six items was used to assess aggression levels, and peer rejection was assessed using a Teachers Report Form (Evans et al., 2015).
The results that were obtained showed that aggression plays a role in the relationship between symptoms of ADHD and peer rejection (Evans et al., 2015). In addition, there were no significant gender differences in ADHD symptoms and aggressive behaviors. The researchers found that the participants with hyperactive-impulsive ADHD symptoms experience a higher level of not only aggression but peer rejection (Evans et al., 2015). This article clarifies that a possible explanation for these results is that hyperactive-impulsive behaviors are strongly linked with aggressive behaviors. Which in turn causes participants with these symptoms to experience more peer rejection since higher levels of aggression is linked to peer rejection.