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Systematic Review: Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder and Instrumental Learning

Tijdschriftbijdrage - Tijdschriftartikel

OBJECTIVE: Although instrumental learning deficits are, among other deficits, assumed to contribute to attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), no comprehensive systematic review of instrumental learning deficits in ADHD exists. This review examines differences between ADHD and typically developing (TD) children in basic instrumental learning and the effects of reinforcement form, magnitude, schedule, and complexity, as well as effects of medication, on instrumental learning in children with ADHD. METHOD: A systematic search of PubMed, PsyINFO, CINAHL, EMBASE+EMBASE CLASSIC, ERIC, and Web of Science was conducted for articles up to March 16, 2020. Experimental studies comparing instrumental learning between groups (ADHD versus TD) or a manipulation of reinforcement/medication within an ADHD sample were included. Quality of studies was assessed with an adapted version of the Hombrados and Waddington criteria to assess risk of bias in (quasi-) experimental studies. RESULTS: A total of 19 studies from among 3,384 non-duplicate screened articles were included. No difference in basic instrumental learning was found between children with ADHD and TD children, nor effects of form or magnitude of reinforcement. Results regarding reinforcement schedule and reversal learning were mixed, but children with ADHD seemed to show deficits in conditional discrimination learning compared to TD children. Methylphenidate improved instrumental learning in children with ADHD. Quality assessment showed poor quality of studies with respect to sample sizes and outcome and missing data reporting. CONCLUSION: The review identified very few and highly heterogenous studies, with inconsistent findings. No clear deficit was found in instrumental learning under laboratory conditions. Children with ADHD do show deficits in complex forms of learning, that is, conditional discrimination learning. Clearly more research is needed, using more similar task designs and manipulations.
Tijdschrift: Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry
ISSN: 0890-8567
Issue: 11
Volume: 60
Pagina's: 1 - 15
Jaar van publicatie:2021
Trefwoorden:Leeftijds- en gender-gerelateerde geneeskunde, Psychiatrie en neurologie , Psychologie en gedragswetenschappen