This study is designed to investigate the predictive validity of a multidimensional assessment strategy for identifying ADHD-related behaviors among Head Start children. Other primary goals for this project are to determine the correspondence between the assessments in the preschool year and children's reading ability the following year, and to determine the degree of agreement of parent and teacher ratings of children's behavior with behavioral indices of inhibitory control and impulsivity. This study will also evaluate the utilization of intervention services by families of children in Head Start. Researchers hypothesize that improvements in the assessment process will likely lead to increased identification of children in need of early intervention that may prevent or reduce poor long-term behavioral and academic outcomes. Participants will include two cohorts of 100 three-, four-, and five-year-old Head Start children and their parents and teachers. During the first year of the project children will be administered the Behavioral Battery of Inhibitory Control Tasks (ICTB) during several individual sessions at the beginning of the Head Start school year and again after a three-month interval. In addition, children will be administered a battery of instruments to assess their intellectual and print awareness skills. Parents and teachers will be asked to complete three questionnaires measuring impulsivity and inhibitory control. The second year of the project will focus on assessing the adequacy of the year 1 behavioral measures in predicting behavior and reading ability in kindergarten. Children who participated in the project during the first year will be administered a series of decoding tasks to assess their growth in reading ability. As well, a new cohort of children will be assessed with all measures once during the fall and followed throughout the school year to track their referral for specialized intervention for behavior problems.
Administration for Children and Families/OPRE Projects