From the outset, the author questions the basic definition of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. Clinically, attention deficit, known as the “disorder” is more accurately described as attention bias.Attention bias indicates that the person is capable of sustaining attention for a desired duration of time depending on the task at hand, self interest and motivation; whereas the attention deficit means that the individual is completely incapable of maintaining sustained attention in any situation.
Furthermore, the author maintains that, “Attentional bias for students with ADHD produces a pattern of difficulty during early performance (i.e. selective attention) and during later performance (i.e. sustained performance), that has educational and treatment implications.” (Zentall, 1993)In the context of education, sustained attention is necessary for completion of a task, learning of rote skills, i.
e. math computation, handwriting, verbalizing a topic, memorizing, following directions and reading comprehension.The educational implications for sustained attention involve requirement of extra time and repetitions of similar motor responses. Research conducted in this area suggests that sustained attention performance of students can be improved through color novelty, novel setting of tests, music novelty and pshychostimulant medication.The activity when manifested as impulsitivity has few educational implications. It has been found that some of the gross motor activities help increasing attention to task or may decrease teacher ratings of hyperactivity or aggression.
Most of the students with ADHD can be accommodated by making changes in the nature of the task or by changing the response requirement. The instructors require training in identifying and paying more attention to the educational manifestations and outcomes of ADHD.Educational professionals should report and suggests treatment priorities since more then often it was found that ADHD frequently co-occurs with learning disabilities, language differences, talents/giftedness, or retardation. In-spite of the many difficulties associated with the characteristics of ADHD, clinicians have documented positive educational outcomes.
Part 200 regulationPrior information implies that the ADHD students should be allowed additional time to respond, and should be provided with novel stimuli in order to help in the improvement of selective attention and sustained attention performances, in the early and later learning respectively. The regulation 200 facilitates the provision of novel stimuli and other such requirements of the ADHD students.The Continuum of services regulation reemphasizes that “the Students with disabilities shall be provided special education in the least restrictive environment, as defined in section 200.The specially designed instruction and supplementary services may be provided in the regular class. Such services may include, but are not limited to, consultant teacher services and other group or individual supplemental or direct special education instruction.For ADHD students this may mean the opportunity for novel stimuli of color, music, response requirements etc.
As mentioned in the same section of the regulation,” Related services shall be recommended by the committee on special education to meet specific needs of a student with a disability as set forth in the individualized education program (IEP)” might pave the path for extra time to complete the work. (Part 200)AnalysisIn the present article the author logically defines the ADHD in new terms as attention bias, and suggests two fold educational implications with respect to attention bias namely selective attention during early learning and sustained attention during later learning.The students with ADHD could be easily accommodated in the existing educational system by changing the response requirements, introducing novel stimuli in the classroom, and by effective teacher training.Reference:Zentall, Sydney S. Oct.
1993 “research on the educational implications of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder” Exceptional children, 60,(2) pg143 Regulation part 200,available at www.web.nysed.gov/vesid