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This study examined whether working memory (WM), inattentive symptoms, and/or hyperactive/impulsive symptoms significantly contributed to academic, behavioral, and global functioning in 8-year-old children. One-hundred-sixty 8-year-old children (75.6% male), who were originally recruited as preschoolers, completed subtests from the Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children–Fourth Edition, Integrated and Wechsler Individual Achievement Test–Second Edition to assess WM and academic achievement, respectively. Teachers rated children’s academic and behavioral functioning using the Vanderbilt Rating Scale. Global functioning, as rated by clinicians, was assessed by the Children’s Global Assessment Scale. Multiple linear regressions were completed to determine the extent to which WM (auditory-verbal and visual-spatial) and/or inattentive and hyperactive/impulsive symptom severity significantly contributed to academic, behavioral, and/or global functioning. Both auditory-verbal and visual-spatial WM but not ADHD symptom severity, significantly and independently contributed to measures of academic achievement (all p < 0.01). In contrast, both WM and inattention symptoms (p < 0.01), but not hyperactivity-impulsivity (p > 0.05) significantly contributed to teacher-ratings of academic functioning. Further, inattention and hyperactivity/impulsivity (p < 0.04), but not WM (p > 0.10) were significantly associated with teacher-ratings of behavioral functioning and clinician-ratings of global functioning. Taken together, it appears that WM in children may be uniquely related to academic skills, but not necessarily to overall behavioral functioning.
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- Low Working Memory rather than ADHD Symptoms Predicts Poor Academic Achievement in School-Aged Children
Ashley N. Simone
David J. Marks
Jeffrey M. Halperin
- Springer US