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J Am Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry. 1997 Aug;36(8):1056-64.

Parent-assisted transfer of children's social skills training: effects on children with and without attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder.

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  • 1UCLA School of Medicine, USA.



Previous research has demonstrated that peer rejection is a significant part of the clinical presentation of many children with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Outcome studies of treatment interventions have typically failed to show generalization of treatment gains to the home and classroom. This has been especially true for children who have comorbid oppositional defiant disorder (ODD). The present study was intended to demonstrate generalization of an outpatient social skills training program when parents were trained in skills relevant to their child's social adjustment.


Thirty-five children with ADHD and 14 children without ADHD were given 12 sessions of treatment (treatment group). Outcome was compared with 12 children with ADHD and 12 children without ADHD who were on a waitlist for treatment (waitlist group). Nineteen children with ODD were in the treatment group and five in the waitlist. Stimulant medication was prescribed for all children with ADHD.


Subjects with ADHD showed improvement comparable with that of subjects without ADHD on all teacher- and parent-reported measures of peer adjustment and social skills, except teacher-reported withdrawal. Children with ODD had outcome comparable with that of children without ODD. Effect sized ranged from 0.93 to 1.34 indicating that the average treatment group subject was better off than 83.4% of waitlist subjects on outcome measures.


The present results suggest that children with ADHD are best heiped by a combination of social skills training for themselves, collateral training for their parents and stimulant medication.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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