Cognitive inhibition in children with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder
Goldman, Meredith Middleton
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Cognitive Inhibition refers to the ability to actively suppress information from working memory space. Such suppression allows more space in working memory to be used for information processing or memory storage as it reduces interference from irrelevant or unnecessary information. In this study, the role of cognitive inhibition as a contributing cognitive deficit in elementary school children with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder- Combined or Primarily Hyperactive types was examined. Participants were administered a variety of assessment tools designed to assess cognitive inhibition. Differences in cognitive inhibition were demonstrated in ADHD children when compared to their non-diagnosed peers on tasks of directed forgetting and negative-priming Stroop, but not tasks requiring picture naming or a sentence completion task. The results of this study suggested that children with ADHD will demonstrate deficits in cognitive inhibition on tasks of directed forgetting and negative-priming Stroop. The failure of other instruments to also demonstrate such differences may have been due to the developmental level of the tasks failing to discriminate between non-ADHD and ADHD children.