Date

2013

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree

Doctor of Philosophy

Department

School Psychology

First Adviser

DuPaul, George J.

Other advisers/committee members

Power, Thomas J.; Manz, Patricia H.; Kern, Lee

Abstract

Approximately 3% to 7% of all school-aged children are diagnosed with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD; American Psychiatric Association [APA], 2000), and parental reports indicate increasing estimates of ADHD in the population (Visser, Bitsko, Danielson, Perou, & Blumberg, 2010). This disorder can lead to difficulties in attention and impulse control that can eventually result in everyday life impairments (APA, 2000; Pelham, Greiner, & Gnagy, 1998). As such, interventions must be implemented for young children that can ameliorate these symptoms at an early age and across settings. One intervention that has met criteria for being well established is parent education (Pelham & Fabiano, 2008). In order for parents and children to benefit from this intervention, however, parents must attend sessions. Nevertheless, previous studies have found parental attendance to be lacking (e.g., Kazdin & Mazurick, 1994). Therefore, the purpose of this study was to investigate predictors of parental attendance at behavioral parent education sessions for those with young children with ADHD. Participants included 135 children (M age = 4; SD = 0.69) and families who participated in an early intervention project, which included parent education. Results indicated that socio-economic status (SES) and marital status were statistically significant predictors of attendance at parent education sessions. Other variables, however, including ethnicity, parent stress, parent support, and child ADHD and ODD symptoms were not significant predictors of attendance. Therefore, future research should work to not only determine possible mediators and moderators between SES and marital status (e.g., parent acceptability of treatment), but also to find innovative ways to partner with parents in order to make parent education treatments relevant, feasible, and accepted.

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