Comprehension of televised stories in boys with attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder and nonreferred boys

Department of Psychology, University of Kentucky 40506-0044, USA.
Journal of Abnormal Psychology (Impact Factor: 5.15). 04/2000; 109(2):321-330. DOI: 10.1037/0021-843X.109.2.321
Source: PubMed


Two studies compared comprehension of televised stories by 7- to 12-year-old boys with attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and nonreferred comparison boys. Boys watched one show with toys present and one with toys absent. Visual attention was continuously recorded, and recall was tested after each show. Across studies, visual attention was high with toys absent but decreased sharply with toys present for boys with ADHD. Groups showed similar levels of cued recall of discrete units of information regardless of differences in attention. When recall tasks and television story structure required knowledge of relations among events, the reduced attention of boys with ADHD interfered with recall. Although visual attention of comparison boys also decreased to some extent with toys present, there was no such decrement in recall. Implications of the difficulties children with ADHD have in integrated story comprehension are discussed. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)

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Available from: Elizabeth P Lorch
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    • "In addition to these elements that reflect core deficits of ADHD, these children also may have an inadequate understanding of what it takes to build a coherent story representation and produce a good recall. Consistent with the documented difficulties children with ADHD demonstrate in making causal connections and recalling important story information (Lorch et al. 2000; 2004a, b), these children also evidence metacognitive deficits in discriminating important from unimportant story events (Lorch, Milich, Astrin, and Berthiaume 2006). Such metacognitive deficits may translate into a lack of awareness of the need to select important events and infer the connections among them. "
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    ABSTRACT: Academic difficulties are well-documented among children with ADHD. Exploring these difficulties through story comprehension research has revealed deficits among children with ADHD in making causal connections between events and in using causal structure and thematic importance to guide recall of stories. Important to theories of story comprehension and implied in these deficits is the ability to make inferences. Often, characters' goals are implicit and explanations of events must be inferred. The purpose of the present study was to compare the inferences generated during story comprehension by 23 7- to 11-year-old children with ADHD (16 males) and 35 comparison peers (19 males). Children watched two televised stories, each paused at five points. In the experimental condition, at each pause children told what they were thinking about the story, whereas in the control condition no responses were made during pauses. After viewing, children recalled the story. Several types of inferences and inference plausibility were coded. Children with ADHD generated fewer of the most essential inferences, plausible explanatory inferences, than did comparison children, both during story processing and during story recall. The groups did not differ on production of other types of inferences. Group differences in generating inferences during the think-aloud task significantly mediated group differences in patterns of recall. Both groups recalled more of the most important story information after completing the think-aloud task. Generating fewer explanatory inferences has important implications for story comprehension deficits in children with ADHD.
    Full-text · Article · Jun 2014 · Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology
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    • "Examining comprehension processes in populations with diverse cognitive abilities has enhanced our general understanding of resources necessary for comprehension. For example, numerous examinations of children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) have advanced our appreciation for attentional resources needed for narrative comprehension and young comprehenders' limits (Tannock et al., 1993; Lorch et al., 1999a,b, 2000, 2004, 2006, 2010; Renz et al., 2003). One study examining children with mild mental retardation and learning disabilities found narrative recall was related to information on causal chains (Wolman et al., 1997). "
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    ABSTRACT: Narratives, also called stories, can be found in conversations, children's play interactions, reading material, and television programs. From infancy to adulthood, narrative comprehension processes interpret events and inform our understanding of physical and social environments. These processes have been extensively studied to ascertain the multifaceted nature of narrative comprehension. From this research we know that three overlapping processes (i.e., knowledge integration, goal structure understanding, and causal inference generation) proposed by the constructionist paradigm are necessary for narrative comprehension, narrative comprehension has a predictive relationship with children's later reading performance, and comprehension processes are generalizable to other contexts. Much of the previous research has emphasized internal and predictive validity; thus, limiting the generalizability of previous findings. We are concerned these limitations may be excluding underrepresented populations from benefits and implications identified by early comprehension processes research. This review identifies gaps in extant literature regarding external validity and argues for increased emphasis on externally valid research. We highlight limited research on narrative comprehension processes in children from low-income and minority populations, and argue for changes in comprehension assessments. Specifically, we argue both on- and off-line assessments should be used across various narrative types (e.g., picture books, televised narratives) with traditionally underserved and underrepresented populations. We propose increasing the generalizability of narrative comprehension processes research can inform persistent reading achievement gaps, and have practical implications for how children learn from narratives.
    Full-text · Article · Mar 2014 · Frontiers in Psychology
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    • "They found significant deficits in event sequencing and more misinterpretations when children with ADHD were compared to typically-developing controls. However, another set of studies found that children with ADHD showed age appropriate mean length utterances, and age appropriate grammatical errors, even as the stories became more complex and required more organization (Barkley et al. 1983; Lorch et al. 2000; Zentall 1988). In summary, most though not all language production studies show that the narrative speech of those with ADHD is marked by disorganization and poor cohesion (Flory et al. 2006; Hamlett et al. 1987; Purvis and Tannock 1997). "
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    ABSTRACT: Theoretical accounts of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) posit a prominent role for problems in response inhibition (Nigg 2006). A key avenue for impulsivity in children with ADHD is inappropriate language expression. In this study, we sought to determine whether poor inhibitory control affects language production in adolescents and adults with ADHD. One hundred and ninety-five participants (13-35 years old; 65% male) were presented with two pictures and a verb, and their task was to form a sentence. If deficits in response inhibition affect language production, then participants with ADHD should be more likely than non-ADHD controls to begin speaking before having formulated a plan that will allow a grammatical continuation. The results showed that the ADHD-combined subtype, in particular, was more likely to produce an ungrammatical sequence. Effects were not moderated by age or gender. These data suggest that response suppression deficits in ADHD adversely affect the basic processes of sentence formation.
    Full-text · Article · Jun 2009 · Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology
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