Off-campus UMass Amherst users: To download dissertations, please use the following link to log into our proxy server with your UMass Amherst user name and password.

Non-UMass Amherst users, please click the view more button below to purchase a copy of this dissertation from Proquest.

(Some titles may also be available free of charge in our Open Access Dissertation Collection, so please check there first.)

Cognitive differences among three -year -old children with symptoms of hyperactivity, inattention, and aggression

Julie L Friedman, University of Massachusetts Amherst


Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is characterized by inattention, hyperactivity, and impulsivity. ADHD children are at significant risk for cognitive deficits and academic underachievement, as well other comorbid psychiatric disorders. A number of studies have examined differences among subtypes of school-aged ADHD children on a variety of cognitive measures. The results from these studies have been largely inconsistent. Although traditionally not diagnosed until school age, preschool children often develop significant externalizing symptoms including those related to ADHD and Oppositional Defiant Disorder (ODD). Few studies have examined the cognitive abilities of preschoolers with externalizing problems. The present study examined cognitive differences among 206 children with different level of externalizing and attentional problems, and compared those children to an additional 56 comparison, "non-problem" children. This study focused on the following areas: Verbal ability, Performance/nonverbal reasoning ability, motor ability, pre-academic achievement, and early language skills. The results suggested that hyperactivity/impulsivity in children was specifically linked to greater cognitive and academic problems, children with comorbid hyperactive and aggressive symptoms were at risk for greater impairment than children with hyperactive/impulsive symptoms alone, and that attention problems was associated with greater motor impairment.

Subject Area

Psychotherapy|Developmental psychology

Recommended Citation

Friedman, Julie L, "Cognitive differences among three -year -old children with symptoms of hyperactivity, inattention, and aggression" (2005). Doctoral Dissertations Available from Proquest. AAI3193903.