Objectivity of Boys with Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and their Mothers when Responding to a Caricatured Portrayal of ADHD

W. Hoong, Stephen Houghton, Graham Douglas

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

In a recent theoretical model of Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) it is proposed that a core deficit in response inhibition affects, among other things, an individual's objectivity in their reaction to events. In the context of this, the ability of boys diagnosed with ADHD objectively to differentiate their own behaviour from that of a caricatured portrayal of ADHD by Bart Simpson was examined. Four segments, each lasting 10–15 seconds, depicting ADHD related behaviours were isolated from a television episode of The Simpsons and shown in random order to 39 boys diagnosed with ADHD, their mothers, and two paediatricians. After watching each segment, the boys were asked to show how similar they believed their behaviours were to those exhibited by Bart Simpson by simultaneously placing two figures (one a replica of Bart and another representing themselves) on a chequer board. Mothers were subsequently administered the same procedure to indicate how they viewed their sons' behaviour in relation to Bart's. The distance measured between the two figures was representative of their levels of objectivity compared to a benchmark level set by the two paediatricians using the same chequer board procedure. While the results overall indicate that boys with ADHD and their mothers are able to make distinctions between caricatured and typical ADHD behaviours, the results are mediated by both ADHD subtype and the specific ADHD behaviour portrayed in the video segment.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)491-505
JournalEducational Psychology
Volume23
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2003

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