Category: ADHD - Child

PS3- #A17 - Treatment Components for Hyperactivity: College Student Beliefs About Effectiveness of Rewards and Brain Balancing

Friday, Nov 17
11:00 AM – 12:00 PM
Location: Indigo Ballroom CDGH, Level 2, Indigo Level

Keywords: ADHD - Child / Adolescent | Dissemination | Evidence-Based Practice

Behavioral interventions are well-established for children with hyperactive behavior, and they commonly include rewards as a critical component (Evans et al., 2014). Conversely, “brain balancing” exercises have little to no research support. In two studies (the second one as a replication), we surveyed college students regarding their beliefs in the effectiveness of rewards and brain balancing exercises as treatment components for hyperactivity. The initial study included 76 college students (82% female, 18% male, 68% Caucasian, 22% African American, 5% Hispanic, 1% Asian, 1% pacific islander, & the rest indicated “other”; 20% freshman, 25% sophomore, 47% junior, 8% senior; mean age = 20.8). Similarly, the replication study included 104 college students (78% female, 22% male, 79% Caucasian, 12% African American, 4% Asian, 2% Hispanic, 2% American Indian, & the rest were “other”; 6% freshman, 37% sophomore, 42% junior, 15% senior; mean age = 20.6). For both studies, the participants filled out the Common Aspects of Treatment Scale (CATS) which has students rate their beliefs in the effectiveness of rewards and brain balancing for hyperactivity (as well as other components for other problems of childhood). Each item includes a 4-point Likert scale (1 = “not effective,” 2 = “probably not effective,” 3 = “probably effective,” 4 = “effective”). Our hypothesis was supported in the first study. That is, students rated rewards (M = 3.20; SD = 0.73) as a more effective treatment component than brain balancing (M = 2.87; SD = 0.85) for hyperactivity, t(75) = 2.474, p < .05. The effect size is moderately large (Cohen’s d = 0.42). Examining the data in a different manner, 81.6% of the college students rated rewards as at least “probably effective,” and 69.8% rated brain balancing as at least “probably effective.” Our hypothesis was also supported in the second study which replicated the same results (and will be added to the poster). It is a positive sign about dissemination efforts that so many participants believe rewards are an effective component; however, the fairly high ratings of brain balancing suggests students still need to learn which treatments are questionable.  

Emily Fischer

Southern Illinois University Edwardsville

Devin Barlaan

Southern Illinois University Edwardsville

Madison Schoen

Southern Illinois University Edwardsville

Sydney Thompson

Southern Illinois University Edwardsville

Elizabeth McKenney

Assistant Professor
Southern Illinois University Edwardsville

Stephen Hupp

Southern Illinois University Edwardsville
Edwardsville, Illinois