Upgrading the Science and Technology of Assessment and Diagnosis: Laboratory and Clinic-Based Assessment of Children with ADHD

Mark D. Rapport, Kyong Mee Chung, Gail Shore, Colin B. Denney, Patti Isaacs

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

72 Citations (Scopus)


Reviews the usefulness of clinic-based and laboratory-based instruments and paradigms for diagnosing attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and monitoring treatment effects. Extant literature examining the performance of normal children and those with ADHD on an extensive range ofneurocognitive tests, tasks, and experimental paradigms indicates that particular types of instruments may be more reliable than others with respect to detecting between-group differences. We review task parameters that may distinguish the more reliable from less reliable instruments. The value of clinic-based and laboratory-based instruments for monitoring treatment response in children with ADHD is questionable when evaluated in the context of ecologically relevant variables such as classroom behavior and academic functioning. We present a general conceptual model to highlight conceptual issues relevant to designing clinic-based and laboratory-based instruments for the purposes of diagnosing and monitoring treatment effects in children with ADHD. Application of the model to currently conceptualized core variables indicates that attention and impulsivity-hyperactivity may represent correlative rather than core features of the disorder. We discuss implications of these findings for designing the next generation of clinic-based and laboratory-based instruments.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)555-568
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2000 Jan 1


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Clinical Psychology

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