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Title: Theory of mind and social understanding in children with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder
Author: Whyte, Margaret Iona
Awarding Body: University of Edinburgh
Current Institution: University of Edinburgh
Date of Award: 2000
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It is known that children with ADHD have social interaction difficulties however little research has been done looking at social understanding of children with ADHD. Autism is associated with social deficits and specific impairment of Theory of Mind. Recent studies have found that children with ADHD have difficulties similar to those of autistic children in some areas of social processing and many of the social behaviours common to autism have been reported in ADHD children e.g. lack of awareness of others, poor eye contact and difficulty observing others' personal space (Clark, Feehan, Tinline & Vostanis, 1999). The present study aimed to assess whether children with ADHD had deficits in Theory of Mind and social understanding. Forty five children with a diagnosis of ADHD, aged six to twelve years, were tested using 1st and 2nd order Theory of Mind tasks, a battery of naturalistic stories measuring social reasoning and a response inhibition task. Aspects of social behaviour were measured using a parent-rated questionnaire. The results were analysed across age groups and compared with published normative data. The results of the study were discussed with reference to theories linking executive functioning and Theory of Mind. Possible relationships between autism and ADHD were examined. The implications of the findings for clinical practice were outlined.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (D.Clin.Psy.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available