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Sample records for delis-kaplan executive function

  1. Some Supplementary Methods for the Analysis of the Delis-Kaplan Executive Function System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crawford, John R.; Garthwaite, Paul H.; Sutherland, David; Borland, Nicola

    2011-01-01

    Supplementary methods for the analysis of the Delis-Kaplan Executive Function System (Delis, Kaplan, & Kramer, 2001) are made available, including (a) quantifying the number of abnormally low achievement scores exhibited by an individual and accompanying this with an estimate of the percentage of the normative population expected to exhibit at…

  2. The Factor Structure and Age-Related Factorial Invariance of the Delis-Kaplan Executive Function System (D-KEFS)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Latzman, Robert D.; Markon, Kristian E.

    2010-01-01

    There has been an increased interest in the structure of and relations among executive functions.The present study examined the factor structure as well as age-related factorial invariance of the Delis-Kaplan Executive Function System (D-KEFS), a widely used inventory aimed at assessing executive functions. Analyses were first conducted using data…

  3. Criterion validity of the Delis-Kaplan Executive Function System (D-KEFS) fluency subtests after traumatic brain injury.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Strong, Carrie-Ann H; Tiesma, David; Donders, Jacobus

    2011-03-01

    The performance of 65 patients with complicated mild-severe traumatic brain injury was evaluated on the Verbal and Design Fluency subtests of the Delis-Kaplan Executive Function System (D-KEFS), and compared with that of 65 demographically matched healthy controls. There were statistically significant group differences on Letter Fluency and Category Switching but not on any of the Design Fluency tasks. Combined, these two Verbal Fluency subtests had a classification accuracy of 65.39%, associated with a likelihood ratio of 1.87. The impact of length of coma on Letter Fluency performance but not Category Switching was mediated at least in part by processing speed. The findings suggest modest criterion validity of some of the D-KEFS Verbal Fluency subtests in the assessment of patients with complicated mild-severe traumatic brain injury.

  4. Using Multivariate Base Rates to Interpret Low Scores on an Abbreviated Battery of the Delis-Kaplan Executive Function System.

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    Karr, Justin E; Garcia-Barrera, Mauricio A; Holdnack, James A; Iverson, Grant L

    2017-05-01

    Executive function consists of multiple cognitive processes that operate as an interactive system to produce volitional goal-oriented behavior, governed in large part by frontal microstructural and physiological networks. Identification of deficits in executive function in those with neurological or psychiatric conditions can be difficult because the normal variation in executive function test scores, in healthy adults when multiple tests are used, is largely unknown. This study addresses that gap in the literature by examining the prevalence of low scores on a brief battery of executive function tests. The sample consisted of 1,050 healthy individuals (ages 16-89) from the standardization sample for the Delis-Kaplan Executive Function System (D-KEFS). Seven individual test scores from the Trail Making Test, Color-Word Interference Test, and Verbal Fluency Test were analyzed. Low test scores, as defined by commonly used clinical cut-offs (i.e., ≤25th, 16th, 9th, 5th, and 2nd percentiles), occurred commonly among the adult portion of the D-KEFS normative sample (e.g., 62.8% of the sample had one or more scores ≤16th percentile, 36.1% had one or more scores ≤5th percentile), and the prevalence of low scores increased with lower intelligence and fewer years of education. The multivariate base rates (BR) in this article allow clinicians to understand the normal frequency of low scores in the general population. By use of these BRs, clinicians and researchers can improve the accuracy with which they identify executive dysfunction in clinical groups, such as those with traumatic brain injury or neurodegenerative diseases.

  5. How Do Executive Functions Fit with the Cattell-Horn-Carroll Model? Some Evidence from a Joint Factor Analysis of the Delis-Kaplan Executive Function System and the Woodcock-Johnson III Tests of Cognitive Abilities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Floyd, Randy G.; Bergeron, Renee; Hamilton, Gloria; Parra, Gilbert R.

    2010-01-01

    This study investigated the relations among executive functions and cognitive abilities through a joint exploratory factor analysis and joint confirmatory factor analysis of 25 test scores from the Delis-Kaplan Executive Function System and the Woodcock-Johnson III Tests of Cognitive Abilities. Participants were 100 children and adolescents…

  6. Effect of Language Proficiency and Executive Control on Verbal Fluency Performance in Bilinguals

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    Luo, Lin; Luk, Gigi; Bialystok, Ellen

    2010-01-01

    We use a time-course analysis to examine the roles of vocabulary size and executive control in bilinguals' verbal fluency performance. Two groups of bilinguals and a group of monolingual adults were tested in English with verbal fluency subtests from the Delis-Kaplan Executive Function System. The two bilingual groups were equivalent in their…

  7. Executive Function Is Associated With Off-Line Motor Learning in People With Chronic Stroke.

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    Al-Dughmi, Mayis; Al-Sharman, Alham; Stevens, Suzanne; Siengsukon, Catherine F

    2017-04-01

    Sleep has been shown to promote off-line motor learning in individuals following stroke. Executive function ability has been shown to be a predictor of participation in rehabilitation and motor recovery following stroke. The purpose of this study was to explore the association between executive function and off-line motor learning in individuals with chronic stroke compared with healthy control participants. Seventeen individuals with chronic stroke (>6 months poststroke) and 9 healthy adults were included in the study. Participants underwent 3 consecutive nights of polysomnography, practiced a continuous tracking task the morning of the third day, and underwent a retention test the morning after the third night. Participants underwent testing on 4 executive function tests after the continuous tracking task retention test. Participants with stroke showed a significant positive correlation between the off-line motor learning score and performance on the Trail-Making Test from Delis-Kaplan Executive Function System (r = 0.652; P = 0.005), while the healthy control participants did not. Regression analysis showed that the Trail-Making Test-Delis-Kaplan Executive Function System is a significant predictor of off-line motor learning (P = 0.008). This is the first study to demonstrate that better performance on an executive function test of attention and set-shifting predicts a higher magnitude of off-line motor learning in individuals with chronic stroke. This emphasizes the need to consider attention and set-shifting abilities of individuals following stroke as these abilities are associated with motor learning. This in turn could affect learning of activities of daily living and impact functional recovery following stroke.Video Abstract available for more insights from the authors (see Video, Supplemental Digital Content 1, http://links.lww.com/JNPT/A166).

  8. Examining the link between information processing speed and executive functioning in multiple sclerosis.

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    Drew, Margaret A; Starkey, Nicola J; Isler, Robert B

    2009-02-01

    Slowed information processing speed (IPS) is frequently reported in those with multiple sclerosis (MS), and at least 20% are compromised on some aspect of executive functioning also. However, any relationship between these two processes has not been examined. The Sternberg Memory Scanning Test, Processing Speed Index (WAIS-III), Delis Kaplan Executive Function System (D.KEFS), and Working Memory Index (WMS-III) were administered to 90 participants with MS. Their performance on the PSI was significantly below the normative scores but no deficits in memory scanning speed were evident. The initial response speed of the Sternberg and the PSI were more closely related to D.KEFS performance, particularly in timed tasks with a high cognitive demand (switching tasks). In contrast, memory scanning speed was related to working memory. This study reinforces the link between IPS and working memory in MS, and supports the suggestion that IPS is not a unitary construct.

  9. The role of executive function and the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex in the expression of neuroticism and conscientiousness.

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    Forbes, Chad E; Poore, Joshua C; Krueger, Frank; Barbey, Aron K; Solomon, Jeffrey; Grafman, Jordan

    2014-01-01

    The current study examined how specific neurological systems contribute to the expression of multiple personality dimensions. We used individuals with traumatic brain injuries to examine the contribution of the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC)--a region important for executive function and attention-to the expression of neuroticism and conscientiousness factors and facets. Results from Voxel-Based Lesion-Symptom Mapping analyses revealed that focal damage to the left DLPFC (Brodmann's area 9) was associated with high neuroticism and low conscientious factor and facet scores (anxiety and self-discipline, respectively). Compared with lesioned and normal controls, veterans with damage in left DLPFC also reported higher neuroticism and lower conscientiousness facet scores, slower reaction times on the California Computerized Assessment Package assessment, and lower scores on the Delis-Kaplan executive function battery. Findings suggest that while neuroticism and conscientiousness remain psychometrically independent personality dimensions, their component facets may rely on a common neurocognitive infrastructure and executive function resources in general.

  10. Neuropsychological functioning in youth with obsessive compulsive disorder: an examination of executive function and memory impairment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lewin, Adam B; Larson, Michael J; Park, Jennifer M; McGuire, Joseph F; Murphy, Tanya K; Storch, Eric A

    2014-04-30

    Preliminary research suggests neuropsychological deficits in youth with obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) similar to those in adults; however, small samples and methodological confounds limit interpretation. We aimed to examine the rates and clinical correlates of cognitive sequelae in youth with OCD, focusing on executive functioning and memory abilities. Youth ages 7-17 years with OCD (N=96) completed a hypothesis-driven neuropsychological battery (including the Rey-Osterreith Complex Figure, California Verbal Learning Test, and subtests of the Delis-Kaplan Executive Function System and Wide Range Assessment of Memory and Learning) that primarily assessed executive functioning, memory and processing speed. Cognitive sequelae were identified in 65% of youth (37% using a more stringent definition of impairment). Magnitude of cognitive sequelae was not associated with OCD severity or age; however, greater neuropsychological impairments were found amongst youth prescribed atypical neuroleptics and those diagnosed with comorbid tic disorders. Comorbidity burden was associated with presence of neuropsychological impairment, but was not specific to any single test. Findings suggest that the presence of cognitive sequelae is prevalent amongst treatment-seeking youth with OCD. Deficits were found in executive functioning and non-verbal memory performance but these impairments were not associated with OCD severity.

  11. The influence of executive functions and memory on self-generation benefit in persons with multiple sclerosis.

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    Goverover, Yael; Chiaravalloti, Nancy; DeLuca, John

    2013-01-01

    Self-generation is a learning strategy, demonstrated to improve learning in healthy persons as well as persons with multiple sclerosis (MS). This study examines the relative influence of memory performance and executive functioning on the ability to benefit from self-generated learning in persons with MS. Participants consisted of 70 individuals with MS. A within-groups design was employed examining recall of words that were presented in two learning conditions: (a) a condition in which the to-be-learned information was provided to the participant and (b) a condition in which the to-be-learned information was self-generated by the participant. Participants were divided into 2 groups based on their benefit from self-generation. Participants who benefited from using self-generation strategy were included in the responders group, and participants who did not benefit from using self-generation were included in the nonresponders group. Executive functions were assessed with the D-KEFS (Delis-Kaplan Executive Function System) Sorting Test, and learning and memory were assessed via the Open-Trial Selective Reminding Test and the Brief Visual Spatial Memory Test-Revised. Responders had significantly better executive functions than nonresponders, while no significant differences were noted between the 2 groups on memory abilities. Logistic regression analysis revealed that performance on the executive functioning task significantly predicted benefit from self-generation. Executive functioning is critical for the ability of an individual with MS to benefit from self-generation strategy use.

  12. Cognitive and behavioral aspects of executive functions in children born very preterm.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ritter, Barbara Catherine; Perrig, Walter; Steinlin, Maja; Everts, Regula

    2014-03-01

    This study investigated whether children aged between 8 and 12 years born very preterm (VPT) and/or at very low birth weight (VLBW) performed lower than same-aged term-born controls in cognitive and behavioral aspects of three executive functions: inhibition, working memory, and shifting. Special attention was given to sex differences. Fifty-two VPT/VLBW children (26 girls, 50%) born in the cohort of 1998-2003 and 36 same-aged term-born children (18 girls, 50%) were recruited. As cognitive measures, children completed tasks of inhibition (Color-Word Interference Test, D-KEFS; Delis, Kaplan, & Kramer, 2001), working memory (digit span backwards, HAWIK-IV; Petermann & Petermann, 2008), and shifting (Trail Making Test, number-letter-switching, D-KEFS; Delis et al., 2001). As behavioral measures, mothers completed the Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function (BRIEF; Gioia, Isquith, Guy, & Kenworthy, 2000). Scales of interest were inhibit, working memory, and shift. Analyses of the cognitive aspects of executive functions revealed that VPT/VLBW children performed significantly lower than controls in the shifting task but not in the working memory and inhibition tasks. Analyses of behavioral aspects of executive functions revealed that VPT/VLBW children displayed more problems than the controls in working memory in everyday life but not in inhibition and shifting. No sex differences could be detected either in cognitive or behavioral aspects of executive functions. To conclude, cognitive and behavioral measures of executive functions were not congruent in VPT/VLBW children. In clinical practice, the combination of cognitive and behavioral instruments is required to disclose children's executive difficulties.

  13. The positive link between executive function and lifetime cannabis use in schizophrenia is not explained by current levels of superior social cognition.

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    Helle, Siri; Løberg, Else-Marie; Gjestad, Rolf; Schnakenberg Martin, Ashley M; Lysaker, Paul H

    2017-04-01

    There has been a growing link between a history of cannabis use and neurocognitive performance in patients with schizophrenia. Fewer neurocognitive deficits may be a marker of the superior social cognition needed to obtain illicit substances, or cannabis use may indicate a distinct path to schizophrenia with less neurocognitive vulnerability. This study sought to determine whether the relationship of cannabis use and executive function exists independently of social cognition. Eighty-seven patients with schizophrenia were administered measures of social cognition and executive function. Social cognition was assessed using the Bell-Lysaker Emotion Recognition Test to measure affect recognition, and the Eyes and Hinting Tests to measure theory of mind. Executive function was assessed by the Mental Flexibility component of the Delis-Kaplan Executive Functioning Scale. The relations between the variables were examined with structural equation modeling. Cannabis use positively related to executive function, negatively related to affect recognition, and had no relationship with theory of mind. There were no indirect effects of other illicit substances on amount of regular cannabis use. Alcohol use was related to worse affect recognition. The relationship between cannabis use and better executive function was supported and was not explained by superior social cognition. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  14. Dimensions of Executive Functioning in Schizophrenia and Their Relationship With Processing Speed

    Science.gov (United States)

    Savla, Gauri N.; Twamley, Elizabeth W.; Delis, Dean C.; Roesch, Scott C.; Jeste, Dilip V.; Palmer, Barton W.

    2012-01-01

    Context: The nature of executive dysfunction in schizophrenia is nebulous, due to inconsistencies in conceptualizing and operationalizing the construct, and the broader question of whether schizophrenia is best characterized in terms of specific vs generalized cognitive deficits. The current study aimed to determine whether executive functions represent unitary vs diverse constructs in schizophrenia. Methods: Participants included 145 community-dwelling individuals with schizophrenia. Executive functions were measured with the Delis-Kaplan Executive Functioning System (D-KEFS). We conducted an exploratory factor analysis (EFA) with principal axis factoring, as well as parallel analyses to examine the latent constructs underlying the D-KEFS tasks, a second EFA on weighted residuals of the D-KEFS tasks (after accounting for processing speed measured with the Digit Symbol task), and bivariate correlations to examine relationships between the D-KEFS components and relevant demographic and clinical variables, crystallized verbal knowledge, and functional capacity. Results: EFA of the D-KEFS tasks yielded 2 factors (cognitive flexibility/timed tests and abstraction). EFA of the processing speed-weighted D-KEFS residuals also yielded 2 factors (cognitive flexibility and abstraction). Cognitive flexibility was negatively correlated with psychopathology. Better abstraction was associated with higher education, shorter illness duration, and better functional capacity. Both factors were positively correlated with crystallized verbal knowledge. Conclusions: Executive functions in schizophrenia could be parsed into 2 partially related but separable subconstructs. Future efforts to elucidate functional outcomes as well as neurobiological underpinnings of schizophrenia may be facilitated by attending to the distinction between cognitive flexibility and abstraction. PMID:21163899

  15. The relationship between the WAIS-III digit symbol Coding and executive functioning.

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    Davis, Andrew S; Pierson, Eric E

    2012-01-01

    The current study examined the performance of college students (N = 63) on the Coding subtest of the Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale-Third Edition and examined whether differences in performance could in part be explained by performance on the Delis-Kaplan Executive Functions System Trail-Making Test. The results of a multiple regression analysis indicated that performance on Coding was correlated most with Letter-Number Sequencing and to a lesser extent with Visual Scanning and with Number Sequencing approaching significance. There was no significant relationship with Letter Sequencing or Motor Speed. The three significant predictor variables were then entered into a stepwise hierarchical regression analysis. Subsequent models using Visual Scanning and Number Sequencing did not improve the predictive value of the model. These results are consistent with other recent reports suggesting that performance on Coding taps cognitive skills and abilities beyond that of simple motor speed or paired-associative learning. The findings also suggest a limited improvement in understanding test performance using a process analysis approach.

  16. Assessment of executive function in adolescence: a comparison of traditional and virtual reality tools.

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    Lalonde, Gabrielle; Henry, Mylène; Drouin-Germain, Anne; Nolin, Pierre; Beauchamp, Miriam H

    2013-09-30

    Paper-pencil type tests are traditionally used in the assessment of executive functions (EF); however, concerns have been raised as to whether these represent actual functioning in everyday life. Virtual reality (VR) environments offer a novel alternative for the assessment of cognitive function and therefore have the potential to enhance the evaluation of EF by presenting individuals with stimuli that come closer to reproducing everyday situations. The aims of this study were to (1) establish which traditional paper-pencil EF tests from the Delis-Kaplan Executive Function System (D-KEFS) are associated with performance on a VR-Stroop task and (2) compare D-KEFS tests and the VR-Stroop task in their ability to predict everyday EF and behavior, as measured by the Behavioral Rating Inventory of Executive Function (BRIEF) and the Child Behavior Checklist (CBCL). Thirty-eight typically developing adolescents aged between 13 and 17 years completed the ClinicaVR: Classroom-Stroop, and five D-KEFS subtests (Trail Making, Tower, Twenty Questions, Verbal Fluency and Color-Word Interference). Their parents completed the BRIEF and CBCL questionnaires. The results indicate that performance on the VR-Stroop task correlates with both traditional forms of EF assessment (D-KEFS, BRIEF). In particular, performance on the VR-Stroop task was closely associated with performance on a paper-pencil inhibition task. Furthermore, VR-Stroop performance more accurately reflected everyday behavioral EF than paper-pencil tasks. VR appears to offer an ecological perspective on everyday functioning and could be seen as complementary to traditional tests in the assessment of complex cognitive abilities.

  17. Inferior Prefrontal Cortex Mediates the Relationship between Phosphatidylcholine and Executive Functions in Healthy, Older Adults

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marta Karolina Zamroziewicz

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Objectives: This study examines the neural mechanisms that mediate the relationship between phosphatidylcholine and executive functions in cognitively intact older adults. We hypothesized that higher plasma levels of phosphatidylcholine are associated with better performance on a particular component of the executive functions, namely cognitive flexibility, and that this relationship is mediated by gray matter structure of regions within the prefrontal cortex (PFC that have been implicated in cognitive flexibility. Methods: We examined 72 cognitively intact adults between the ages of 65 and 75 in an observational, cross-sectional study to investigate the relationship between blood biomarkers of phosphatidylcholine, tests of cognitive flexibility (measured by the Delis-Kaplan Executive Function System Trail Making Test, and gray matter structure of regions within the PFC. A three-step mediation analysis was implemented using multivariate linear regressions and we controlled for age, sex, education, income, depression status, and body mass index.Results: The mediation analysis revealed that gray matter thickness of one region within the PFC, the left inferior PFC (Brodmann’s Area 45, mediates the relationship between phosphatidylcholine blood biomarkers and cognitive flexibility. Conclusion: These results suggest that the inferior PFC acts as a mediator of the relationship between phosphatidylcholine and cognitive flexibility in cognitively intact older adults. This report demonstrates a novel structural mediation between plasma phosphatidylcholine levels and cognitive flexibility. Future work should examine the potential mechanisms underlying this mediation, including phosphatidylcholine-dependent cell membrane integrity of the inferior PFC and phosphatidylcholine-dependent cholinergic projections to the inferior PFC.

  18. Ten-year outcome of early childhood traumatic brain injury: Diffusion tensor imaging of the ventral striatum in relation to executive functioning.

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    Faber, J; Wilde, E A; Hanten, G; Ewing-Cobbs, L; Aitken, M E; Yallampalli, R; MacLeod, M C; Mullins, S H; Chu, Z D; Li, X; Hunter, J V; Noble-Haeusslein, L; Levin, H S

    2016-01-01

    The long-term effects of TBI on verbal fluency and related structures, as well as the relation between cognition and structural integrity, were evaluated. It was hypothesized that the group with TBI would evidence poorer performance on cognitive measures and a decrease in structural integrity. Between a paediatric group with TBI and a group of typically-developing children, the long-term effects of traumatic brain injury were investigated in relation to both structural integrity and cognition. Common metrics for diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) were used as indicators of white matter integrity. Using DTI, this study examined ventral striatum (VS) integrity in 21 patients aged 10-18 years sustaining moderate-to-severe traumatic brain injury (TBI) 5-15 years earlier and 16 demographically comparable subjects. All participants completed Delis-Kaplan Executive Functioning System (D-KEFS) sub-tests. The group with TBI exhibited lower fractional anisotropy (FA) and executive functioning performance and higher apparent diffusion coefficient (ADC). DTI metrics correlated with D-KEFS performance (right VS FA with Inhibition errors, right VS ADC with Letter Fluency, left VS FA and ADC with Category Switching). TBI affects VS integrity, even in a chronic phase, and may contribute to executive functioning deficits.

  19. Anterior cingulate cortex mediates the relationship between O3PUFAs and executive functions in APOE e4 carriers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marta Karolina Zamroziewicz

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available Introduction: Although diet has a substantial influence on the aging brain, the relationship between biomarkers of diet and aspects of brain health remains unclear. This study examines the neural mechanisms that mediate the relationship between omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (O3PUFAs and executive functions in at-risk (APOE e4 carriers, cognitively intact older adults. We hypothesized that higher levels of O3PUFAs are associated with better performance in a particular component of the executive functions, namely cognitive flexibility, and that this relationship is mediated by gray matter volume of a specific region thought to be important for cognitive flexibility, the anterior cingulate cortex. Methods: We examined 40 cognitively intact adults between the ages of 65 and 75 with the APOE e4 polymorphism to investigate the relationship between biomarkers of O3PUFAs, tests of cognitive flexibility (measured by the Delis-Kaplan Executive Function System Trail Making Test, and gray matter volume within regions of the prefrontal cortex. Results: A mediation analysis revealed that gray matter volume within the left rostral anterior cingulate cortex partially mediates the relationship between O3PUFA biomarkers and cognitive flexibility. Conclusion: These results suggest that the anterior cingulate cortex acts as a mediator of the relationship between O3PUFAs and cognitive flexibility in cognitively intact adults thought to be at risk for cognitive decline. Through their link to executive functions and neuronal measures of prefrontal cortex volume, O3PUFAs show potential as a nutritional therapy to prevent dysfunction in the aging brain.

  20. Executive Function Predicts Adaptive Behavior in Children with Histories of Heavy Prenatal Alcohol Exposure and Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder

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    Ware, Ashley L.; Crocker, Nicole; O’Brien, Jessica W.; Deweese, Benjamin N.; Roesch, Scott C.; Coles, Claire D.; Kable, Julie A.; May, Philip A.; Kalberg, Wendy O.; Sowell, Elizabeth R.; Jones, Kenneth Lyons; Riley, Edward P.; Mattson, Sarah N.

    2011-01-01

    Purpose of Study Prenatal exposure to alcohol often results in disruption to discrete cognitive and behavioral domains, including executive function (EF) and adaptive functioning. In the current study, the relation between these two domains was examined in children with histories of heavy prenatal alcohol exposure, non-exposed children with a diagnosis of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), and typically developing controls. Methods As part of a multisite study, three groups of children (8-18y, M = 12.10) were tested: children with histories of heavy prenatal alcohol exposure (ALC, N=142), non-exposed children with ADHD (ADHD, N=82), and typically developing controls (CON, N=133) who did not have ADHD or a history of prenatal alcohol exposure. Children completed subtests of the Delis-Kaplan Executive Function System (D-KEFS) and their primary caregivers completed the Vineland Adaptive Behavior Scales-II (VABS). Data were analyzed using regression analyses. Results Analyses showed that EF measures were predictive of adaptive abilities and significant interactions between D-KEFS measures and group were present. For the ADHD group, the relation between adaptive abilities and EF was more general, with three of the four EF measures showing a significant relation with adaptive score. In contrast, for the ALC group, this relation was specific to the nonverbal EF measures. In the CON group, performance on EF tasks did not predict adaptive scores over the influence of age. Conclusion These results support prior research in ADHD suggesting that EF deficits are predictive of poorer adaptive behavior and extend this finding to include children with heavy prenatal exposure to alcohol. However, the relation between EF and adaptive ability differed by group, suggesting unique patterns of abilities in these children. These results provide enhanced understanding of adaptive deficits in these populations, as well as demonstrate the ecological validity of laboratory

  1. Executive Functioning and Learning Skills of Adolescent Children Born at Fewer than 26 Weeks of Gestation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A Farooqi

    Full Text Available To assess the cognitive and behavioral aspects of executive functioning (EF and learning skills in extremely preterm (EPT children compared with term control children aged 10 to 15 years.A total of 132 of 134 (98% of all eligible survivors EPT children born at the 2 Swedish regional tertiary care centers from 1992 to 1998 (mean age = 12 years, mean birth weight = 718 g, and mean gestational age = 24.4 weeks and 103 matched term controls were assessed. General intelligence was assessed using the Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children (WISC-III-R, and cognitive aspects of EF were analyzed using EF-sensitive subscales of the WISC-III-R and Tower test of the Delis-Kaplan Executive Function Scale (D-KEFS. Behaviors related to EF and learning skills were assessed using the Five to Fifteen questionnaire, which is a validated parent and teacher instrument. Academic performance in school was assessed by teachers' responses on Achenbach's Teachers Report Form. Analyses performed included multivariate analyses of covariance (ANCOVA and MANCOVA and logistic regression analyses.The EPT children displayed significant deficits in cognitive aspects of EF compared with the controls, exhibiting decreases on the order of 0.9 SD to 1.2 SD for tasks of verbal conceptual reasoning, verbal and non-verbal working memory, processing speed and planning ability (P 70 and without major NSI revealed no interactions, but significant main effects were observed for the behavioral composite executive function score, group status (EPT vs control and FSIQ, for which all effect sizes were medium to large. The corresponding findings of MANCOVA of the parent-reported learning skills were very similar. According to the teachers' ratings, the EPT children were less well adjusted to the school environment.EPT children born in the 1990s who received active perinatal care are at an increased risk of executive dysfunction, even after excluding children with significant

  2. Core executive functions are associated with success in young elite soccer players

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    Reinebo, Gustaf; Maurex, Liselotte; Ingvar, Martin; Petrovic, Predrag

    2017-01-01

    Physical capacity and coordination cannot alone predict success in team sports such as soccer. Instead, more focus has been directed towards the importance of cognitive abilities, and it has been suggested that executive functions (EF) are fundamentally important for success in soccer. However, executive functions are going through a steep development from adolescence to adulthood. Moreover, more complex EF involving manipulation of information (higher level EF) develop later than simple executive functions such as those linked to simple working memory capacity (Core EF). The link between EF and success in young soccer players is therefore not obvious. In the present study we investigated whether EF are associated with success in soccer in young elite soccer players. We performed tests measuring core EF (a demanding working memory task involving a variable n-back task; dWM) and higher level EF (Design Fluency test; DF). Color-Word Interference Test and Trail Making Test were performed on an exploratory level as they contain a linguistic element. The lower level EF test (dWM) was taken from CogStateSport computerized concussion testing and the higher level EF test (DF) was from Delis-Kaplan Executive Function System test battery (D-KEFS). In a group of young elite soccer players (n = 30; aged 12–19 years) we show that they perform better than the norm in both the dWM (+0.49 SD) and DF (+0.86 SD). Moreover, we could show that both dWM and DF correlate with the number of goals the players perform during the season. The effect was more prominent for dWM (r = 0.437) than for DF (r = 0.349), but strongest for a combined measurement (r = 0.550). The effect was still present when we controlled for intelligence, length and age in a partial correlation analysis. Thus, our study suggests that both core and higher level EF may predict success in soccer also in young players. PMID:28178738

  3. A proof-of-concept randomized controlled study of gabapentin: effects on cannabis use, withdrawal and executive function deficits in cannabis-dependent adults.

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    Mason, Barbara J; Crean, Rebecca; Goodell, Vivian; Light, John M; Quello, Susan; Shadan, Farhad; Buffkins, Kimberly; Kyle, Mark; Adusumalli, Murali; Begovic, Adnan; Rao, Santosh

    2012-06-01

    There are no FDA-approved pharmacotherapies for cannabis dependence. Cannabis is the most widely used illicit drug in the world, and patients seeking treatment for primary cannabis dependence represent 25% of all substance use admissions. We conducted a phase IIa proof-of-concept pilot study to examine the safety and efficacy of a calcium channel/GABA modulating drug, gabapentin, for the treatment of cannabis dependence. A 12-week, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial was conducted in 50 unpaid treatment-seeking male and female outpatients, aged 18-65 years, diagnosed with current cannabis dependence. Subjects received either gabapentin (1200 mg/day) or matched placebo. Manual-guided, abstinence-oriented individual counseling was provided weekly to all participants. Cannabis use was measured by weekly urine toxicology and by self-report using the Timeline Followback Interview. Cannabis withdrawal symptoms were assessed using the Marijuana Withdrawal Checklist. Executive function was measured using subtests from the Delis-Kaplan Executive Function System. Relative to placebo, gabapentin significantly reduced cannabis use as measured both by urine toxicology (p=0.001) and by the Timeline Followback Interview (p=0.004), and significantly decreased withdrawal symptoms as measured by the Marijuana Withdrawal Checklist (pGabapentin was also associated with significantly greater improvement in overall performance on tests of executive function (p=0.029). This POC pilot study provides preliminary support for the safety and efficacy of gabapentin for treatment of cannabis dependence that merits further study, and provides an alternative conceptual framework for treatment of addiction aimed at restoring homeostasis in brain stress systems that are dysregulated in drug dependence and withdrawal.

  4. Combined Cognitive-Strategy and Task-Specific Training Affects Cognition and Upper-Extremity Function in Subacute Stroke: An Exploratory Randomized Controlled Trial.

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    Wolf, Timothy J; Polatajko, Helene; Baum, Carolyn; Rios, Jorge; Cirone, Dianne; Doherty, Meghan; McEwen, Sara

    2016-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to estimate the effect of Cognitive Orientation to Daily Occupational Performance (CO-OP) compared with usual occupational therapy on upper-extremity movement, cognitive flexibility, and stroke impact in people less than 3 mo after stroke. An exploratory, single-blind randomized controlled trial was conducted with people referred to outpatient occupational therapy services at two rehabilitation centers. Arm movement was measured with the Action Research Arm Test, cognitive flexibility with the Delis-Kaplan Executive Function System Trail Making subtest, and stroke impact with subscales of the Stroke Impact Scale. A total of 35 participants were randomized, and 26 completed the intervention. CO-OP demonstrated measurable effects over usual care on all measures. These data provide early support for the use of CO-OP to improve performance and remediate cognitive and arm movement impairments after stroke over usual care; however, future study is warranted to confirm the effects observed in this trial.

  5. Executive functions in synesthesia.

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    Rouw, Romke; van Driel, Joram; Knip, Koen; Richard Ridderinkhof, K

    2013-03-01

    In grapheme-color synesthesia, a number or letter can evoke two different and possibly conflicting (real and synesthetic) color sensations at the same time. In this study, we investigate the relationship between synesthesia and executive control functions. First, no general skill differences were obtained between synesthetes and non-synesthetes in classic executive control paradigms. Furthermore, classic executive control effects did not interact with synesthetic behavioral effects. Third, we found support for our hypothesis that inhibition of a synesthetic color takes effort and time. Finally, individual differences analyses showed no relationship between the two skills; performance on a 'normal' Stroop task does not predict performance on a synesthetic Stroop task. Across four studies, the current results consistently show no clear relationship between executive control functions and synesthetic behavioral effects. This raises the question of which mechanisms are at play in synesthetic 'management' during the presence of two conflicting (real and synesthetic) sensations. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  6. Executive functions in synesthesia

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Rouw, R.; van Driel, J.; Knip, K.; Ridderinkhof, K.R.

    2013-01-01

    In grapheme-color synesthesia, a number or letter can evoke two different and possibly conflicting (real and synesthetic) color sensations at the same time. In this study, we investigate the relationship between synesthesia and executive control functions. First, no general skill differences were

  7. Executive functions in synesthesia

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    R. Rouw; J. van Driel; K. Knip; K.R. Ridderinkhof

    2013-01-01

    In grapheme-color synesthesia, a number or letter can evoke two different and possibly conflicting (real and synesthetic) color sensations at the same time. In this study, we investigate the relationship between synesthesia and executive control functions. First, no general skill differences were ob

  8. EXECUTIVE FUNCTIONING IN SCHIZOPHRENIA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gricel eOrellana

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available The executive function (EF is a set of abilities, which allows us to invoke voluntary control of our behavioral responses. These functions enable human beings to develop and carry out plans, make up analogies, obey social rules, solve problems, adapt to unexpected circumstances, do many tasks simultaneously and locate episodes in time and place. EF includes divided attention and sustained attention, working memory, set-shifting, flexibility, planning and the regulation of goal directed behavior and can be defined as a brain function underlying the human faculty to act or think not only in reaction to external events but also in relation with internal goals and states. EF is mostly associated with dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (PFC. Besides EF, PFC is involved in self-regulation of behavior, i.e. the ability to regulate behavior according to internal goals and constraints, particularly in less structured situations. Self-regulation of behavior is subtended by ventral medial /orbital PFC. Impairment of EF is one of the most commonly observed deficits in schizophrenia through the various disease stages. Impairment in tasks measuring conceptualization, planning, cognitive flexibility, verbal fluency, ability to solve complex problems and working memory occur in schizophrenia. Disorders detected by executive tests are consistent with evidence from functional neuroimaging, which have shown PFC dysfunction in patients while performing these kinds of tasks. Schizophrenics also exhibit deficit in odor identifying, decision-making and self-regulation of behavior suggesting dysfunction of the orbital PFC. However, impairment in executive tests is explained by dysfunction of prefronto-striato-thalamic, prefronto-parietal and prefronto-temporal neural networks mainly. Disorders in executive functions may be considered central facts with respect to schizophrenia and it has been suggested that negative symptoms may be explained by that executive dysfunction.

  9. Executive functioning in schizophrenia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Orellana, Gricel; Slachevsky, Andrea

    2013-01-01

    The executive function (EF) is a set of abilities, which allows us to invoke voluntary control of our behavioral responses. These functions enable human beings to develop and carry out plans, make up analogies, obey social rules, solve problems, adapt to unexpected circumstances, do many tasks simultaneously, and locate episodes in time and place. EF includes divided attention and sustained attention, working memory (WM), set-shifting, flexibility, planning, and the regulation of goal directed behavior and can be defined as a brain function underlying the human faculty to act or think not only in reaction to external events but also in relation with internal goals and states. EF is mostly associated with dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (PFC). Besides EF, PFC is involved in self-regulation of behavior, i.e., the ability to regulate behavior according to internal goals and constraints, particularly in less structured situations. Self-regulation of behavior is subtended by ventral medial/orbital PFC. Impairment of EF is one of the most commonly observed deficits in schizophrenia through the various disease stages. Impairment in tasks measuring conceptualization, planning, cognitive flexibility, verbal fluency, ability to solve complex problems, and WM occur in schizophrenia. Disorders detected by executive tests are consistent with evidence from functional neuroimaging, which have shown PFC dysfunction in patients while performing these kinds of tasks. Schizophrenics also exhibit deficit in odor identifying, decision-making, and self-regulation of behavior suggesting dysfunction of the orbital PFC. However, impairment in executive tests is explained by dysfunction of prefronto-striato-thalamic, prefronto-parietal, and prefronto-temporal neural networks mainly. Disorders in EFs may be considered central facts with respect to schizophrenia and it has been suggested that negative symptoms may be explained by that executive dysfunction.

  10. Lacking power impairs executive functions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Smith, P.K.; Jostmann, N.B.; Galinsky, A.D.; Dijk, W.W. van

    2008-01-01

    Four experiments explored whether lacking power impairs executive functioning, testing the hypothesis that the cognitive presses of powerlessness increase vulnerability to performance decrements during complex executive tasks. In the first three experiments, low power impaired performance on executi

  11. Television and children's executive function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lillard, Angeline S; Li, Hui; Boguszewski, Katie

    2015-01-01

    Children spend a lot of time watching television on its many platforms: directly, online, and via videos and DVDs. Many researchers are concerned that some types of television content appear to negatively influence children's executive function. Because (1) executive function predicts key developmental outcomes, (2) executive function appears to be influenced by some television content, and (3) American children watch large quantities of television (including the content of concern), the issues discussed here comprise a crucial public health issue. Further research is needed to reveal exactly what television content is implicated, what underlies television's effect on executive function, how long the effect lasts, and who is affected.

  12. Developmental Changes in Executive Functioning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Kerry; Bull, Rebecca; Ho, Ringo M. H.

    2013-01-01

    Although early studies of executive functioning in children supported Miyake et al.'s (2000) three-factor model, more recent findings supported a variety of undifferentiated or two-factor structures. Using a cohort-sequential design, this study examined whether there were age-related differences in the structure of executive functioning among…

  13. Executive Function in Adolescents with ADHD

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martel, Michelle; Nikolas, Molly; Nigg, Joel T.

    2007-01-01

    A study is conducted to determine the specificity of executive function weakness in attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) during adolescence. Results suggest that executive function weakness in ADHD is specifically associated with symptoms of inattention-disorganization.

  14. Assessing Executive Functioning: A Pragmatic Review

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hass, Michael R.; Patterson, Ashlea; Sukraw, Jocelyn; Sullivan, Brianna M.

    2014-01-01

    Despite the common usage of the term "executive functioning" in neuropsychology, several aspects of this concept remain unsettled. In this paper, we will address some of the issues surrounding the notion of executive functioning and how an understanding of executive functioning and its components might assist school-based practitioners…

  15. On the Evolutionary Origins of Executive Functions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ardila, Alfredo

    2008-01-01

    In this paper it is proposed that the prefrontal lobe participates in two closely related but different executive function abilities: (1) "metacognitive executive functions": problem solving, planning, concept formation, strategy development and implementation, controlling attention, working memory, and the like; that is, executive functions as…

  16. Autism Spectrum Disorder and intact executive functioning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferrara, R; Ansermet, F; Massoni, F; Petrone, L; Onofri, E; Ricci, P; Archer, T; Ricci, S

    2016-01-01

    Earliest notions concerning autism (Autism Spectrum Disorders, ASD) describe the disturbance in executive functioning. Despite altered definition, executive functioning, expressed as higher cognitive skills required complex behaviors linked to the prefrontal cortex, are defective in autism. Specific difficulties in children presenting autism or verbal disabilities at executive functioning levels have been identified. Nevertheless, the developmental deficit of executive functioning in autism is highly diversified with huge individual variation and may even be absent. The aim of the present study to examine the current standing of intact executive functioning intact in ASD.

  17. Executive Functions in Developmental Dyslexia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pamela eVarvara

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available The present study was aimed at investigating different aspects of Executive Functions (EF in children with Developmental Dyslexia (DD.A neuropsychological battery tapping verbal fluency, spoonerism, attention, verbal shifting, short-term and working memory was used to assess 60 children with DD and 65 with typical reading abilities.Compared to their controls, children with DD showed deficits in several EF domains such as verbal categorical and phonological fluency, visual-spatial and auditory attention, spoonerism, verbal and visual short-term memory, and verbal working memory. Moreover, exploring predictive relationships between EF measures and reading, we found that spoonerism abilities better explained word and non-word reading deficits. Although to a lesser extent, auditory and visual-spatial attention also explained the increased percentage of variance related to reading deficit.EF deficits found in DD are interpreted as an expression of a deficient functioning of the Central Executive System and are discussed in the context of the recent temporal sampling theory.

  18. Executive functions in anorexia nervosa

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ignacio Jauregui-Lobera

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available Introduction: The pathophysiologic mechanisms that account for the development and persistence of anorexia nervosa (AN remain unclear. With respect to the neuropsychological functioning, the executive functions have been reported to be altered, especially cognitive flexibility and decision-making processes. Objectives: The aim of this study was to review the current state of the neuropsychological studies focused on anorexia nervosa, especially those highlighting the executive functions. Methods: This was done by means of a searching process covering three relevant electronic databases, as well as an additional search on references included in the analysed papers. Eventually we have to mention other published reviews and a hand-search. Results and discussion: Comparing AN patients and healthy controls the results remain controversial and so remains the comparison of different eating disorders with respect to the neuropsychological dysfunction. The role of variables such as depression, anxiety and obsessionality needs to be clarified. There seems to be some base to state that some commonalities exist in the so-called extreme weight conditions (anorexia, obesity. The link between neuropsychological dysfunction in AN and biomarkers remains unclear. The role of neuropsychological deficits in AN, as initial factors or simply as mere consequences, remains unclear too. The link between the body image disturbances and the neuropsychological dysfunction needs to be clarified. The similarities between the AN neuropsychological dysfunction and that found in other mental disorders may be considered up to date as a mere approach. The same applies to the relationship between the AN patients´ neuropsychological performance and personality or gender.

  19. Musical Expertise, Bilingualism, and Executive Functioning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bialystok, Ellen; DePape, Anne-Marie

    2009-01-01

    The authors investigated whether intensive musical experience leads to enhancements in executive processing, as has been shown for bilingualism. Young adults who were bilinguals, musical performers (instrumentalists or vocalists), or neither completed 3 cognitive measures and 2 executive function tasks based on conflict. Both executive function…

  20. Executive Functions in Savant Artists with Autism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crane, Laura; Pring, Linda; Ryder, Nicola; Hermelin, Beate

    2011-01-01

    Although executive functions have been widely studied in individuals with autism spectrum disorders (ASD), there have been no direct empirical studies of executive abilities in savants with ASD. This study assessed three facets of executive ability (fluency, perseveration and monitoring) in savant artists with ASD, compared to non-talented adults…

  1. Executive Functions in Savant Artists with Autism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crane, Laura; Pring, Linda; Ryder, Nicola; Hermelin, Beate

    2011-01-01

    Although executive functions have been widely studied in individuals with autism spectrum disorders (ASD), there have been no direct empirical studies of executive abilities in savants with ASD. This study assessed three facets of executive ability (fluency, perseveration and monitoring) in savant artists with ASD, compared to non-talented adults…

  2. Intergenerational Transmission of Neuropsychological Executive Functioning

    OpenAIRE

    Jester, Jennifer M; Joel T. Nigg; Puttler, Leon I.; Long, Jeffrey C.; Fitzgerald, Hiram E.; Zucker, Robert A.

    2009-01-01

    Relationships between parent and child executive functioning were examined, controlling for the critical potential confound of IQ, in a family study involving 434 children (130 girls, 304 boys) and 376 parents from 204 community recruited families at high risk for the development of substance use disorder. Structural equation modeling found evidence of separate executive functioning and intelligence (IQ) latent variables. Mother’s and father’s executive functioning were associated with child’...

  3. Executive function, episodic memory, and Medicare expenditures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bender, Alex C; Austin, Andrea M; Grodstein, Francine; Bynum, Julie P W

    2017-07-01

    We examined the relationship between health care expenditures and cognition, focusing on differences across cognitive systems defined by global cognition, executive function, or episodic memory. We used linear regression models to compare annual health expenditures by cognitive status in 8125 Nurses' Health Study participants who completed a cognitive battery and were enrolled in Medicare parts A and B. Adjusting for demographics and comorbidity, executive impairment was associated with higher total annual expenditures of $1488 per person (P executive function, but not episodic memory ($584 higher for every 1 standard deviation decrement in executive function; P executive function is specifically and linearly associated with higher health care expenditures. Focusing on management strategies that address early losses in executive function may be effective in reducing costly services. Copyright © 2017 the Alzheimer's Association. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. A simple hypothesis of executive function

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bruno eKopp

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Executive function is traditionally conceptualized as a set of abilities required to guide behavior toward goals. Here, an integrated theoretical framework for executive function is developed which has its roots in the notion of hierarchical mental models. Further following Duncan (2010a,b, executive function is construed as a hierarchical recursive system of test-operation-test-exit units (Miller, Galanter, and Pribram, 1960. Importantly, it is shown that this framework can be used to model the main regional prefrontal syndromes, which are characterized by apathetic, disinhibited and dysexecutive cognition and behavior, respectively. Implications of these considerations for the neuropsychological assessment of executive function are discussed.

  5. 29 CFR 452.19 - Executive functions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    ... 29 Labor 2 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 false Executive functions. 452.19 Section 452.19 Labor... DISCLOSURE ACT OF 1959 Coverage of Election Provisions § 452.19 Executive functions. The definitional phrase “a person authorized to perform the functions of president, vice president, secretary, treasurer,...

  6. Executive Functions Development and Playing Games

    Science.gov (United States)

    Petty, Ana Lucia; de Souza, Maria Thereza C. Coelho

    2012-01-01

    The aim of this paper is to discuss executive functions and playing games, considering Piaget's work (1967) and the neuropsychological framework (Barkley, 1997, 2000; Cypel, 2007). Two questions guide the discussion: What are the intersections between playing games and the development of executive functions? Can we stimulate children with learning…

  7. Neural modeling of prefrontal executive function

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Levine, D.S. [Univ. of Texas, Arlington, TX (United States)

    1996-12-31

    Brain executive function is based in a distributed system whereby prefrontal cortex is interconnected with other cortical. and subcortical loci. Executive function is divided roughly into three interacting parts: affective guidance of responses; linkage among working memory representations; and forming complex behavioral schemata. Neural network models of each of these parts are reviewed and fit into a preliminary theoretical framework.

  8. Understanding the Executive Functioning Heterogeneity in Schizophrenia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raffard, Stephane; Bayard, Sophie

    2012-01-01

    Schizophrenia is characterized by heterogeneous brain abnormalities involving cerebral regions implied in the executive functioning. The dysexecutive syndrome is one of the most prominent and functionally cognitive features of schizophrenia. Nevertheless, it is not clear to what extend executive deficits are heterogeneous in schizophrenia…

  9. Executive Function and Early Reading Skills

    Science.gov (United States)

    Foy, Judith G.; Mann, Virginia A.

    2013-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to examine how executive function skills in verbal and nonverbal auditory tasks are related to early reading skills in beginning readers. Kindergarteners (N = 41, aged 5 years) completed verbal (phonemes) and nonverbal (environmental sounds) Continuous Performance tasks yielding measures of executive function (misses,…

  10. Executive Functioning after Traumatic Brain Injury

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J Gordon Millichap

    2008-07-01

    Full Text Available The Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function (BRIEF, a caregiver-report questionnaire, was used to measure changes in executive function in the first year after traumatic brain injury (TBI in a study of children, aged 5 to 15 years, at University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, and Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD.

  11. Understanding the Executive Functioning Heterogeneity in Schizophrenia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raffard, Stephane; Bayard, Sophie

    2012-01-01

    Schizophrenia is characterized by heterogeneous brain abnormalities involving cerebral regions implied in the executive functioning. The dysexecutive syndrome is one of the most prominent and functionally cognitive features of schizophrenia. Nevertheless, it is not clear to what extend executive deficits are heterogeneous in schizophrenia…

  12. [Executive function and behavior in university drinkers].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salcedo Palacios, Dii Dayana; Ramírez Nova, Yeimy Johanna; Acosta Barreto, María Rocío

    2015-01-01

    Establish the profile of executive function and behavior in fifty consumers of alcohol are located in a high-risk level according to the Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test (AUDIT) and which belong to different universities in the city of Bogota. Was used analytical transverse design, and were taken as study variables executive function (inhibition, monitoring, sequencing, planning, cognitive flexibility, working memory, attentional control, categorization and concept formation) and executive behavior (decision making, impulse control, emotional feedback, empathy and theory of mind). Results showed that there is a greater number of cognitive domains of executive function involved in contrast to those of executive behavior. Such is for inhibition, sequencing, attention control (processing speed), categorization, cognitive flexibility, self monitoring and planning. Copyright © 2014 Asociación Colombiana de Psiquiatría. Publicado por Elsevier España. All rights reserved.

  13. Metacognition and executive functioning in Elementary School

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Trinidad García

    Full Text Available This study analyzes differences in metacognitive skills and executive functioning between two groups of students (10-12 years with different levels of metacognitive knowledge (high n = 50, low n = 64. Groups were established based on students' score on a test of knowledge of strategy use. Metacognitive skills were assessed by means of self-report. Students reported the frequency with which they applied these strategies during the phases of planning, execution, and evaluation of learning. Information about student executive functioning was provided by families and teachers, who completed two parallel forms of a behavior rating scale. The results indicated that: a the group with high levels of metacognitive knowledge reported using their metacognitive skills more frequently than their peers in the other group. These differences were statistically significant in the phases of planning and execution; b both family and teachers informed of better levels of executive functioning in the students with high metacognitive knowledge. Statistically significant differences were found in planning, functional memory, focus, and sustained attention. These results show the existence of an association between different levels of metacognitive knowledge, and differences in metacognitive skills and executive functions, and suggest the need to emphasize this set of variables in order to encourage students to acquire increasing levels of control over their learning process.

  14. A Multimodal, Nonpharmacologic Intervention Improves Mood and Cognitive Function in People with Multiple Sclerosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Jennifer E; Bisht, Babita; Hall, Michael J; Rubenstein, Linda M; Louison, Rebecca; Klein, Danielle T; Wahls, Terry L

    2017-01-01

    The objective of this study was to examine whether participation in a 12-month multimodal intervention would improve mood and cognitive function in adults with progressive multiple sclerosis (MS). In this one-arm, open-label feasibility trial, participants were prescribed a home-based multimodal intervention, including (1) a modified Paleolithic diet; (2) an exercise program (stretching and strengthening of the trunk and lower limb muscles); (3) neuromuscular electrical stimulation (EStim) of trunk and lower limb muscles; and (4) stress management (meditation and self-massage). Individuals completed measures of mood (Beck Anxiety and Depression Inventories) and cognitive (Cognitive Stability Index, Cognitive Screening Test, Delis-Kaplan Executive Function System) and executive function (Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale) at baseline and 3, 6, 9, and 12 months after the start of the intervention. Dosage of the multimodal intervention was assessed at 3, 6, 9, and 12 months. The more individuals participated in the intervention activities, the greater improvements they had from baseline to 12 months on self-report measures of anxiety (Beck Anxiety Inventory [BAI]; ps = 0.001 to 0.02), depression (Beck Depression Inventory [BDI]; ps = Paleolithic diet than to exercise and stress management dosage. Anxiety and depression changes were evident after just a few months, whereas changes in cognitive function were generally not observed until later in the intervention period. Mood and cognitive function changes from baseline to 12 months were significantly associated with fatigue improvements (ps = Paleolithic diet, exercise, EStim, and stress management intervention like this one has the potential to improve the mood and cognitive symptoms that can lead to considerable suffering in people with MS, potentially improving quality of life and function for people with progressive MS.

  15. [Executive functions and high intellectual capacity].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sastre-Riba, S; Viana-Saenz, L

    2016-01-01

    High intellectual capacity is a process in development in which the executive functions (inhibition, working memory and flexibility) play a role in the optimal manifestation of their potential. To explore the effectiveness of executive functioning among the profiles of high capacity giftedness and (convergent or divergent) talent. The study examines 78 children with high intellectual capacity aged 8-15 years with profiles of giftedness (n = 21), convergent talent (n = 39) or divergent talent (n = 18). A series of tests were administered including the Battery of Differential and General Aptitudes or the Differential Aptitude Test (depending on the age) and the Torrance Test of Creative Thinking, as well as the Wisconsin Card Sorting Test, the Corsi Test and the Go-No Go Test by means of the Psychology Experiment Building Language platform. A multivariate analysis of variance was performed to determine the relationship between executive function and intellectual profile. Significant differences are obtained between the profiles studied and the executive functions of flexibility and inhibition, but not in working memory. Working memory is similar across the profiles studied, but the complex profile of giftedness displays better executive functioning, with greater flexibility and inhibition than talent, especially of the convergent type.

  16. Components of executive functioning in metamemory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mäntylä, Timo; Rönnlund, Michael; Kliegel, Matthias

    2010-10-01

    This study examined metamemory in relation to three basic executive functions (set shifting, working memory updating, and response inhibition) measured as latent variables. Young adults (Experiment 1) and middle-aged adults (Experiment 2) completed a set of executive functioning tasks and the Prospective and Retrospective Memory Questionnaire (PRMQ). In Experiment 1, source recall and face recognition tasks were included as indicators of objective memory performance. In both experiments, analyses of the executive functioning data yielded a two-factor solution, with the updating and inhibition tasks constituting a common factor and the shifting tasks a separate factor. Self-reported memory problems showed low predictive validity, but subjective and objective memory performance were related to different components of executive functioning. In both experiments, set shifting, but not updating and inhibition, was related to PRMQ, whereas source recall showed the opposite pattern of correlations in Experiment 1. These findings suggest that metamemorial judgments reflect selective effects of executive functioning and that individual differences in mental flexibility contribute to self-beliefs of efficacy.

  17. Executive Function and Language in Deaf Children

    Science.gov (United States)

    Figueras, Berta; Edwards, Lindsey; Langdon, Dawn

    2008-01-01

    The relationship between language and executive function (EF) and their development in children have been the focus of recent debate and are of theoretical and clinical importance. Exploration of these functions in children with a peripheral hearing loss has the potential to be informative from both perspectives. This study compared the EF and…

  18. Building the blocks of executive functioning: differentiating early developing processes contributing to executive functioning skills

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mandell, D.J.; Ward, S.E.

    2011-01-01

    The neural processes that underlie executive function begin to develop in infancy. However, it is unclear how the behavior manifested by these processes are related or if they can be differentiated early in development. This study seeks to examine early emerging executive functioning skills in

  19. Executive functioning in college students: Evaluation of the Dutch Executive Function Index (EFI-NL)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Janssen, G.T.L.; Mey, H.R.A. de; Egger, J.I.M.

    2009-01-01

    The Executive Function Index (EFI) is a short self-report questionnaire for the assessment of executive functions (EF) as encountered in daily life. The aim of the present study is to examine the psychometric properties of the Dutch version of the EFI (EFI-NL) in a college student sample (N = 376).

  20. Building the blocks of executive functioning: differentiating early developing processes contributing to executive functioning skills

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mandell, D.J.; Ward, S.E.

    2011-01-01

    The neural processes that underlie executive function begin to develop in infancy. However, it is unclear how the behavior manifested by these processes are related or if they can be differentiated early in development. This study seeks to examine early emerging executive functioning skills in monke

  1. Musical expertise, bilingualism, and executive functioning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bialystok, Ellen; Depape, Anne-Marie

    2009-04-01

    The authors investigated whether intensive musical experience leads to enhancements in executive processing, as has been shown for bilingualism. Young adults who were bilinguals, musical performers (instrumentalists or vocalists), or neither completed 3 cognitive measures and 2 executive function tasks based on conflict. Both executive function tasks included control conditions that assessed performance in the absence of conflict. All participants performed equivalently for the cognitive measures and the control conditions of the executive function tasks, but performance diverged in the conflict conditions. In a version of the Simon task involving spatial conflict between a target cue and its position, bilinguals and musicians outperformed monolinguals, replicating earlier research with bilinguals. In a version of the Stroop task involving auditory and linguistic conflict between a word and its pitch, the musicians performed better than the other participants. Instrumentalists and vocalists did not differ on any measure. Results demonstrate that extended musical experience enhances executive control on a nonverbal spatial task, as previously shown for bilingualism, but also enhances control in a more specialized auditory task, although the effect of bilingualism did not extend to that domain. (c) 2009 APA, all rights reserved.

  2. Longitudinal antecedents of executive function in preschoolers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Conway, Anne; Stifter, Cynthia A

    2012-01-01

    Despite an extensive history underscoring the role of social processes and child contributions to the development of executive functions (C. Lewis & J. Carpendale, 2009; L. S. Vygotsky, 1987), research on these relations is sparse. To address this gap, 68 mother-child dyads were examined to determine whether maternal attention-directing behaviors (attention maintaining, attention redirection) and toddlers' temperament predicted executive processes during preschool (mean age = 4.5 years, SD = 0.46)-delay and conflict inhibition. Maternal attention maintaining was associated with high levels of conflict inhibition for inhibited and exuberant children, whereas attention redirection was associated with low levels of delay and conflict inhibition for inhibited children. Therefore, maternal attention-directing behaviors may enhance the development of executive functions but only for children with inhibited and exuberant temperaments. © 2012 The Authors. Child Development © 2012 Society for Research in Child Development, Inc.

  3. Designing pedagogy incorporating executive function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wasserman, Theodore

    2013-01-01

    The National Academy of Neuropsychology defines clinical neuropsychology as "a sub-field of psychology concerned with the applied science of brain-behavior relationships. Clinical neuropsychologists use this knowledge in the assessment, diagnosis, treatment, and/or rehabilitation of patients across the lifespan with neurological, medical, neurodevelopmental and psychiatric conditions, as well as other cognitive and learning disorders" (National Academy of Neuropsychology, 2011 ). Pediatric neuropsychologists have long been concerned about another area of functionality, making their recommendations educationally relevant. This article describes accommodated metacognitive instruction, a pedagogy based on cognitive neuropsychological principles of learning and used to instruct college faculty on a methodology for teaching in all-inclusive environments.

  4. Exergaming immediately enhances children's executive function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Best, John R

    2012-09-01

    The current study examined an important aspect of experience--physical activity--that may contribute to children's executive function. The design attempted to tease apart 2 important aspects of children's exercise by examining the separate and combined effects of acute physical activity and cognitive engagement on an aspect of children's executive functioning. In a 2 × 2 within-subject experimental design, children (N = 33, 6 to 10 years old) completed activities that varied systematically in both physical activity (physically active video games versus sedentary video activities) and cognitive engagement (challenging and interactive video games versus repetitive video activities). Cognitive functioning, including executive function, was assessed after each activity by a modified flanker task (Rueda et al., 2004). Whereas cognitive engagement had no effect on any aspect of task performance, physical activity (i.e., exergaming) enhanced children's speed to resolve interference from conflicting visuospatial stimuli. Age comparisons indicated improvements with age in the accuracy of resolving interference and in overall response time. The results extend past research by showing more precisely how physical activity influences executive function and how this effect differs from the improvements that occur with development.

  5. Intergenerational Transmission of Neuropsychological Executive Functioning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jester, Jennifer M.; Nigg, Joel T.; Puttler, Leon I.; Long, Jeffrey C.; Fitzgerald, Hiram E.; Zucker, Robert A.

    2009-01-01

    Relationships between parent and child executive functioning were examined, controlling for the critical potential confound of IQ, in a family study involving 434 children (130 girls and 304 boys) and 376 parents from 204 community recruited families at high risk for the development of substance use disorder. Structural equation modeling found…

  6. Executive Function in Williams and Down Syndromes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carney, Daniel P. J.; Brown, Janice H.; Henry, Lucy A.

    2013-01-01

    Williams (WS) and Down (DS) syndromes are characterised by roughly opposing ability profiles. Relative verbal strengths and visuospatial difficulties have been reported in those with WS, while expressive language difficulties have been observed in individuals with DS. Few investigations into the executive function (EF) skills of these groups have…

  7. Infant Attention and Early Childhood Executive Function

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cuevas, Kimberly; Bell, Martha Ann

    2014-01-01

    Individual differences in infant attention are theorized to reflect the speed of information processing and are related to later cognitive abilities (i.e., memory, language, and intelligence). This study provides the first systematic longitudinal analysis of infant attention and early childhood executive function (EF; e.g., working memory,…

  8. Promoting Executive Function in the Classroom

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meltzer, Lynn

    2010-01-01

    Accessible and practical, this book helps teachers incorporate executive function processes--such as planning, organizing, prioritizing, and self-checking--into the classroom curriculum. Chapters provide effective strategies for optimizing what K-12 students learn by improving how they learn. Noted authority Lynn Meltzer and her research…

  9. Longitudinal Antecedents of Executive Function in Preschoolers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Conway, Anne; Stifter, Cynthia A.

    2012-01-01

    Despite an extensive history underscoring the role of social processes and child contributions to the development of executive functions (C. Lewis & J. Carpendale, 2009; L. S. Vygotsky, 1987), research on these relations is sparse. To address this gap, 68 mother-child dyads were examined to determine whether maternal attention-directing behaviors…

  10. Unraveling Executive Functioning in Dual Diagnosis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duijkers, Judith C. L. M.; Vissers, Constance Th. W. M.; Egger, Jos I. M.

    2016-01-01

    In mental health, the term dual-diagnosis is used for the co-occurrence of Substance Use Disorder (SUD) with another mental disorder. These co-occurring disorders can have a shared cause, and can cause/intensify each other’s expression. Forming a threat to health and society, dual-diagnosis is associated with relapses in addiction-related behavior and a destructive lifestyle. This is due to a persistent failure to control impulses and the maintaining of inadequate self-regulatory behavior in daily life. Thus, several aspects of executive functioning like inhibitory, shifting and updating processes seem impaired in dual-diagnosis. Executive (dys-)function is currently even seen as a shared underlying key component of most mental disorders. However, the number of studies on diverse aspects of executive functioning in dual-diagnosis is limited. In the present review, a systematic overview of various aspects of executive functioning in dual-diagnosis is presented, striving for a prototypical profile of patients with dual-diagnosis. Looking at empirical results, inhibitory and shifting processes appear to be impaired for SUD combined with schizophrenia, bipolar disorder or cluster B personality disorders. Studies involving updating process tasks for dual-diagnosis were limited. More research that zooms in to the full diversity of these executive functions is needed in order to strengthen these findings. Detailed insight in the profile of strengths and weaknesses that underlies one’s behavior and is related to diagnostic classifications, can lead to tailor-made assessment and indications for treatment, pointing out which aspects need attention and/or training in one’s self-regulative abilities. PMID:27445939

  11. Unraveling Executive Functioning in Dual Diagnosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duijkers, Judith C L M; Vissers, Constance Th W M; Egger, Jos I M

    2016-01-01

    In mental health, the term dual-diagnosis is used for the co-occurrence of Substance Use Disorder (SUD) with another mental disorder. These co-occurring disorders can have a shared cause, and can cause/intensify each other's expression. Forming a threat to health and society, dual-diagnosis is associated with relapses in addiction-related behavior and a destructive lifestyle. This is due to a persistent failure to control impulses and the maintaining of inadequate self-regulatory behavior in daily life. Thus, several aspects of executive functioning like inhibitory, shifting and updating processes seem impaired in dual-diagnosis. Executive (dys-)function is currently even seen as a shared underlying key component of most mental disorders. However, the number of studies on diverse aspects of executive functioning in dual-diagnosis is limited. In the present review, a systematic overview of various aspects of executive functioning in dual-diagnosis is presented, striving for a prototypical profile of patients with dual-diagnosis. Looking at empirical results, inhibitory and shifting processes appear to be impaired for SUD combined with schizophrenia, bipolar disorder or cluster B personality disorders. Studies involving updating process tasks for dual-diagnosis were limited. More research that zooms in to the full diversity of these executive functions is needed in order to strengthen these findings. Detailed insight in the profile of strengths and weaknesses that underlies one's behavior and is related to diagnostic classifications, can lead to tailor-made assessment and indications for treatment, pointing out which aspects need attention and/or training in one's self-regulative abilities.

  12. Executive function in young Colombian adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pineda, David A; Merchan, Vilma

    2003-03-01

    The aim of this article was to observe the correlation between executive function (EF) variables, and to determine the factor structure of the EF in young university students, as mathematical models for supporting its multidimensional structure. Participants were both males and females, aged 16 to 21 years (N = 100) and with normal Full Scale IQ selected in a randomized and representative approach in private universities of Medellín, Colombia. They were students of verbal, visual-spatial, and mathematical careers. An executive function assessment battery was applied and which included: Wisconsin Card Sorting Test (WCST), Trail Making Test (TMT) A and B, verbal fluency test (FAS) by phonologic and semantic cues, and Stroop's conflict word/color test. The results were as follows: An orthogonal structure of five factors, which explained 74.9% of the variance, was found. Factor 1 was formed by WCST variables (organization and flexibility), and explained 25.8% of the variance. Errors from the Stroop reading and naming were assigned to factor 2, which explained 17.3% of the variance. Factor 3 was the time for executing Stroop's test, and explained 13.1% of the variance. Factor 4 was TMT A and B (10.1%). Factor 5 was verbal fluency (8.5% of the variance). In conclusion, executive function in young university students was conformed by five orthogonal cognitive dimensions.

  13. Cognitive Functions in Elite and Sub-Elite Youth Soccer Players Aged 13 to 17 Years.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huijgen, Barbara C H; Leemhuis, Sander; Kok, Niels M; Verburgh, Lot; Oosterlaan, Jaap; Elferink-Gemser, Marije T; Visscher, Chris

    2015-01-01

    Soccer players are required to anticipate and react continuously in a changing, relatively unpredictable situation in the field. Cognitive functions might be important to be successful in soccer. The current study investigated the relationship between cognitive functions and performance level in elite and sub-elite youth soccer players aged 13-17 years. A total of 47 elite youth soccer players (mean age 15.5 years, SD = 0.9) and 41 sub-elite youth soccer players (mean age 15.2 years, SD = 1.2) performed tasks for "higher-level" cognitive functions measuring working memory (i.e., Visual Memory Span), inhibitory control (i.e., Stop-Signal Task), cognitive flexibility (i.e., Trail Making Test), and metacognition (i.e., Delis-Kaplan Executive Function System Design Fluency Test). "Lower-level" cognitive processes, i.e., reaction time and visuo-perceptual abilities, were also measured with the previous tasks. ANOVA's showed that elite players outscored sub-elite players at the "higher-level" cognitive tasks only, especially on metacognition (p soccer players on inhibitory control (p = .001), and cognitive flexibility (p = .042), but not on metacognition (p = .27). No differences were found concerning working memory nor the "lower-level" cognitive processes (p > .05). In conclusion, elite youth soccer players have better inhibitory control, cognitive flexibility, and especially metacognition than their sub-elite counterparts. However, when training hours are taken into account, differences between elite and sub-elite youth soccer players remain apparent on inhibitory control and cognitive flexibility in contrast to metacognition. This highlights the need for longitudinal studies to further investigate the importance of "higher-level" cognitive functions for talent identification, talent development and performance in soccer.

  14. Executive functioning in highly talented soccer players.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Verburgh, Lot; Scherder, Erik J A; van Lange, Paul A M; Oosterlaan, Jaap

    2014-01-01

    Executive functions might be important for successful performance in sports, particularly in team sports requiring quick anticipation and adaptation to continuously changing situations in the field. The executive functions motor inhibition, attention and visuospatial working memory were examined in highly talented soccer players. Eighty-four highly talented youth soccer players (mean age 11.9), and forty-two age-matched amateur soccer players (mean age 11.8) in the age range 8 to 16 years performed a Stop Signal task (motor inhibition), the Attention Network Test (alerting, orienting, and executive attention) and a visuospatial working memory task. The highly talented soccer players followed the talent development program of the youth academy of a professional soccer club and played at the highest national soccer competition for their age. The amateur soccer players played at a regular soccer club in the same geographical region as the highly talented soccer players and play in a regular regional soccer competition. Group differences were tested using analyses of variance. The highly talented group showed superior motor inhibition as measured by stop signal reaction time (SSRT) on the Stop Signal task and a larger alerting effect on the Attention Network Test, indicating an enhanced ability to attain and maintain an alert state. No group differences were found for orienting and executive attention and visuospatial working memory. A logistic regression model with group (highly talented or amateur) as dependent variable and executive function measures that significantly distinguished between groups as predictors showed that these measures differentiated highly talented soccer players from amateur soccer players with 89% accuracy. Highly talented youth soccer players outperform youth amateur players on suppressing ongoing motor responses and on the ability to attain and maintain an alert state; both may be essential for success in soccer.

  15. Early executive function predicts reasoning development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Richland, Lindsey E; Burchinal, Margaret R

    2013-01-01

    Analogical reasoning is a core cognitive skill that distinguishes humans from all other species and contributes to general fluid intelligence, creativity, and adaptive learning capacities. Yet its origins are not well understood. In the study reported here, we analyzed large-scale longitudinal data from the Study of Early Child Care and Youth Development to test predictors of growth in analogical-reasoning skill from third grade to adolescence. Our results suggest an integrative resolution to the theoretical debate regarding contributory factors arising from smaller-scale, cross-sectional experiments on analogy development. Children with greater executive-function skills (both composite and inhibitory control) and vocabulary knowledge in early elementary school displayed higher scores on a verbal analogies task at age 15 years, even after adjusting for key covariates. We posit that knowledge is a prerequisite to analogy performance, but strong executive-functioning resources during early childhood are related to long-term gains in fundamental reasoning skills.

  16. The Development of Executive Function in Autism

    OpenAIRE

    Elizabeth Pellicano

    2012-01-01

    Autism is a common and often highly debilitating neurodevelopmental condition, whose core behavioral features are believed to be rooted in disrupted neurocognitive processes, including especially “executive function.” Researchers have predominantly focused upon understanding the putative causal relationship between difficulties in EF and autistic symptomatology. This paper suggests, however, that the effects of individual differences in EF should be more far-reaching, playing a significant pa...

  17. Development of executive functions in preschool age

    OpenAIRE

    Pushina N.P.

    2015-01-01

    Development of processes of self-control behavior is one of the fundamental problems of developmental psychology. Both in Russian and foreign psychology the idea of self-control (executive control) of behavior in closely connected with functioning of prefrontal cortex of the brain. This approach has been formed under the influence of clinical research studies of damage results in these brain divisions and experiments with primates

  18. Getting the right grasp on executive function

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Claudia L R Gonzalez

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available Executive Function (EF refers to important socio-emotional and cognitive skills that are known to be highly correlated with both academic and life success. EF is a blanket term that is considered to include self-regulation, working memory, and planning. Recent studies have shown a relationship between EF and motor control. The emergence of motor control coincides with that of EF, hence understanding the relationship between these two domains could have significant implications for early detection and remediation of later EF deficits. The purpose of the current study was to investigate this relationship in young children. This study incorporated the Behavioural Rating Inventory of Executive Function (BRIEF and two motor assessments with a focus on precision grasping to test this hypothesis. The BRIEF is comprised of two indices of EF: 1 the Behavioral Regulation Index (BRI containing three subscales: Inhibit, Shift, and Emotional Control; 2 the Metacognition Index (MI containing five subscales: Initiate, Working Memory, Plan/Organize, Organization of Materials, and Monitor. A global executive composite (GEC is derived from the two indices. In this study, right-handed children aged 5-6 and 9-10 were asked to: grasp-to-construct (Lego® models; and grasp-to-place (wooden blocks, while their parents completed the BRIEF questionnaire. Analysis of results indicated significant correlations between the strength of right hand preference for grasping and numerous elements of the BRIEF including the BRI, MI, and GEC. Specifically, the more the right hand was used for grasping the better the EF ratings. In addition, patterns of space-use correlated with the GEC in several subscales of the BRIEF. Finally and remarkably, the results also showed a reciprocal relationship between hand and space use for grasping and EF. These findings are discussed with respect to: 1 the developmental overlap of motor and executive functions; 2 detection of EF deficits through

  19. Executive functions as predictors of math learning disabilities

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Toll, S.W.M.; van der Ven, S.H.G.; Kroesbergen, E.H.; van Luit, J.E.H.

    2011-01-01

    In the past years, an increasing number of studies have investigated executive functions as predictors of individual differences in mathematical abilities. The present longitudinal study was designed to investigate whether the executive functions shifting, inhibition, and working memory differ betwe

  20. Executive functioning in pre-school children with autism spectrum disorders: The relationship between executive functioning and language

    OpenAIRE

    Linnerud, Ida Cathrine Wang

    2014-01-01

    Background: Executive function difficulties are prevalent in children with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) and there are several indications of a modifying relationship between executive functions and language in children. However, there is limited research on the relationship between executive functioning and language in young children with ASD. The current study compared real-world executive functioning between groups of children with ASD, language disorders (LD), and typical development (T...

  1. Rehabilitation of executive functions: Implications and strategies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bruno Kluwe-Schiavon

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Executive Functions (EF concern a range of abilities including problem-solving, planning, initiation, selfmonitoring,conscious attention, cope with new situations and the ability to modify plans if necessary. It’s a high cognitive function that is crucial for a person to get engaged and maintain daily activities whilst keeping a good quality of life. Problems in the EF were formerly known as Dysexecutive Syndrome (DS. There are many models concerning DS, although the literature on the subject still remains unclear. Several works appoint the effects brought by elderly life, as well as abuse of drugs and some psychopathologies. These factors are known to increase the distress of the frontal circuits and that could be associated to executive deficits. The effects of DS would compromise individuals in day-to-day routine, academic, social and labor fields. There is a growing body of studies trying to determine the causes, implications, associations and the best way to take care of these effects. This work intends to review DS, focusing on the most important fields related to this area, such as psychopathology associations, cognitive reserve, assessment and cognitive rehabilitation programs.

  2. Executive Function and Emotion Regulation Strategy Use in Adolescents.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lantrip, Crystal; Isquith, Peter K; Koven, Nancy S; Welsh, Kathleen; Roth, Robert M

    2016-01-01

    Development of emotion regulation strategy use involves a transition from reliance on suppression during childhood to greater use of reappraisal in adolescence and adulthood-a transition that parallels developmental changes in executive functions. We evaluated the relationship between emotion regulation strategy use and executive functioning in the everyday life of 70 typically developing adolescents who completed the Emotion Regulation Questionnaire for Youth and the Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function-Self-Report. Results indicated that greater reliance on reappraisal was associated with better executive functions, while reliance on suppression was related to poorer executive functions. Findings suggest that adolescents who rely on reappraisal may have more cognitive resources to help them remain attentive and well regulated in their daily lives. On the other hand, if better executive functions facilitate the use of reappraisal, adolescents' ability to regulate their emotions could potentially be enhanced via supports for executive functions.

  3. The Development of Executive Function in Autism

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elizabeth Pellicano

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Autism is a common and often highly debilitating neurodevelopmental condition, whose core behavioral features are believed to be rooted in disrupted neurocognitive processes, including especially “executive function.” Researchers have predominantly focused upon understanding the putative causal relationship between difficulties in EF and autistic symptomatology. This paper suggests, however, that the effects of individual differences in EF should be more far-reaching, playing a significant part in the real-life outcomes of individuals with autism, including their social competence, everyday adaptive behavior, and academic achievement. It further considers the nature of the EF-outcome relationship, including the possible determinants of individual differences in EF, and makes several recommendations for future research.

  4. Update on Executive Function Neuropsychological Tests

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julián Marino

    2010-02-01

    Full Text Available This review presents different problems related to executive functions (EF assessment with neuropsychological tests. It shows an overview of EF definitions and theoreticals models created to overcome the problem of inductive lists. Also EF tests history and their emerging contexts are reviewed, to hypothetisize about its consequences over actual conditions of EF assessment practice. Later, an EF tests classification is proposed, taking into account criterias like tests origins, constructs relates and systemic or simple forms of aplication. Finally the idea of a new generation of tests supported by theoreticals and technological advances was analyzed. This includes the development of EF scientifical ontologies, reverse inferences analysis and ecological and etological validity studies.

  5. Questionnaire of Executive Function for Dancers: An Ecological Approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wong, Alina; Rodriguez, Mabel; Quevedo, Liliana; de Cossio, Lourdes Fernandez; Borges, Ariel; Reyes, Alicia; Corral, Roberto; Blanco, Florentino; Alvarez, Miguel

    2012-01-01

    There is a current debate about the ecological validity of executive function (EF) tests. Consistent with the verisimilitude approach, this research proposes the Ballet Executive Scale (BES), a self-rating questionnaire that assimilates idiosyncratic executive behaviors of classical dance community. The BES was administrated to 149 adolescents,…

  6. Executive Function in SLI: Recent Advances and Future Directions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kapa, Leah L; Plante, Elena

    2015-09-01

    This paper provides a review of recent research on executive function abilities in children with specific language impairment (SLI). Across several studies, children with SLI are reported to perform worse than typically developing peers on measures of sustained attention, working memory, inhibition, and attention shifting. However, few studies have considered multiple executive function components simultaneously and even fewer have examined the underlying relationship between executive function deficits and impaired language acquisition. We argue that in order to fully understand the nature of executive function deficits in SLI, the field must move past simply identifying weaknesses to instead test models of executive function development and explore the nature of the relationship between executive function and language. Future research directions are recommended in order to achieve these goals.

  7. Implementing an Executive-Function Syllabus: Operational Issues

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Russell Jay Hendel

    2016-01-01

    A recent approach to pedagogic challenge, contrastive to the hierarchy approach of Bloom, Anderson, Gagne, Van Hiele, Marzano, Webb and many others, identifies pedagogic challenge with executive function...

  8. 29 CFR 452.20 - Nature of executive functions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    ... 29 Labor 2 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 false Nature of executive functions. 452.20 Section 452.20 Labor... DISCLOSURE ACT OF 1959 Coverage of Election Provisions § 452.20 Nature of executive functions. (a) The functions that will bring a particular position with a title other than president, vice-president,...

  9. Executive Functions in the Context of Complex Learning: Malleable Moderators?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schwaighofer, Matthias; Bühner, Markus; Fischer, Frank

    2017-01-01

    Executive functions are crucial for complex learning in addition to prior knowledge. In this article, we argue that executive functions can moderate the effectiveness of instructional approaches that vary with respect to the demand on these functions. In addition, we suggest that engagement in complex activity contexts rather than specific…

  10. Executive function during transient ischemic attacks

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Jianhua Zhao; Tong Li; Yanxia Liu; Ping Zhang; Haiqing Yan

    2007-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Recent researches demonstrate that damage of executive function is an early manifestation of vascular cognitive disorder.OBJECTIVE: To investigate the executive functions of patients with transient ischemic attack (TIA).DESIGN: Case control.SETTING: Department of Neurology, the First Affiliated Hospital of Xinxiang Medical College.PARTICIPANTS: A total of 83 TIA patients (46 males and 37 females, aged 32 - 74 years) were selected from Department of Neurology, the First Affiliated Hospital of Xinxiang Medical College from July 2005 to December 2006. The diagnosis of TIA was established by the criteria of cerebrovascular diseases made by the Fourth National Cerebrovascular Disease Meeting. In these cases, forty-five patients (54%) were involved in internal carotid artery, and thirty-eight patients (46%) were involved in vertebral basilar system.Fifty healthy adults (Control group: 28 males and 22 females, aged 32 - 74 years) were chosen from retiree in community and family of patients. All of them were right-handedness, without cerebrovascular disease,cerebral trauma, inborn oligophrenia, and hearing and visual disorders; also they had no anxiety and depression nearly one week. In addition, all the subjects cooperated with examination.METHODS: After TIA diagnosis, all patients received neuropsychological examination, including attention and inhibition, working memory, flexibility, planning and diversion, based on Stroop tests (C and CW) and the Wisconsin card sorting tests (WCST). ① WCST test: The edition revised by Nelson was used. We would take the times of sorting, incorrect response, persistent incorrect response, and randomly incorrect response as the index of evaluation. ② Stroop tests: The edition revised by Trenarry was used and this test had two types: form color and form color-word. Their incorrect response and response time were recorded for data analysis in the end.MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Results of WCST test and Stroop tests.RESULTS: A

  11. Executive functions in adults with developmental dyslexia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith-Spark, James H; Henry, Lucy A; Messer, David J; Edvardsdottir, Elisa; Zięcik, Adam P

    2016-01-01

    Executive functioning (EF) deficits are well recognized in developmental dyslexia, yet the majority of studies have concerned children rather than adults, ignored the subjective experience of the individual with dyslexia (with regard to their own EFs), and have not followed current theoretical perspectives on EFs. The current study addressed these shortfalls by administering a self-report measure of EF (BRIEF-A; Roth, Isquith, & Gioia, 2005) and experimental tasks to IQ-matched groups of adults with and without dyslexia. The laboratory-based tasks tested the three factors constituting the framework of EF proposed by Miyake et al. (2000). In comparison to the group without dyslexia, the participants with dyslexia self-reported more frequent EF problems in day-to-day life, with these difficulties centering on metacognitive processes (working memory, planning, task monitoring, and organization) rather than on the regulation of emotion and behaviour. The participants with dyslexia showed significant deficits in EF (inhibition, set shifting, and working memory). The findings indicated that dyslexia-related problems have an impact on the daily experience of adults with the condition. Further, EF difficulties are present in adulthood across a range of laboratory-based measures, and, given the nature of the experimental tasks presented, extend beyond difficulties related solely to phonological processing. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. Executive functioning, memory, and learning in phenylketonuria.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Channon, Shelley; German, Elaine; Cassina, Cristina; Lee, Philip

    2004-10-01

    The executive deficit hypothesis of treated phenylketonuria (PKU) suggests that dopaminergic depletion in the lateral prefrontal cortex leads to selective executive impairment. This was examined by comparing adults with PKU on a lifelong diet with a matched healthy control group. Those with PKU were impaired on selective and sustained attention, working memory (Self-Ordered Pointing), and letter fluency. However, they failed to show differential sensitivity to increased cognitive load on the attentional and working memory tasks, and they did not differ significantly on the remaining executive tasks (rule finding, inhibition, and multitasking). Nor did they differ significantly on recall or recognition memory. Overall, the findings provided little support for the executive deficit hypothesis. A possible explanation in terms of slowed information processing speed is explored.

  13. Test Review: Barkley Deficits in Executive Functioning Scale (BDEFS)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allee-Smith, Paula J.; Winters, Rebecca R.; Drake, Amanda; Joslin, Amanda K.

    2013-01-01

    The Barkley Deficits in Executive Functioning Scale (BDEFS), authored by Russell A. Barkley and published by Guilford in 2011, is an individually administered assessment tool that may be used to evaluate adults ages 18 to 81. The purpose of this measure is to screen those who may be experiencing executive functioning (EF) deficits in…

  14. Evidence for a Role of Executive Functions in Learning Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rhodes, Sinéad M.; Booth, Josephine N.; Campbell, Lorna Elise; Blythe, Richard A.; Wheate, Nial J.; Delibegovic, Mirela

    2014-01-01

    Research examining cognition and science learning has focused on working memory, but evidence implicates a broader set of executive functions. The current study examined executive functions and learning of biology in young adolescents. Fifty-six participants, aged 12-13?years, completed tasks of working memory (Spatial Working Memory), inhibition…

  15. Executive Function in Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sinha, Preeti; Sagar, Rajesh; Mehta, Manju

    2008-01-01

    Aim: To assess executive functions in medication naive children with attention deficit/hyperactivity (ADHD). Method: Group matched (age and gender) children with ADHD (N=30) and healthy children (N=30) in the age range of 6-14 years were compared on measures of executive functions (response inhibition, working memory, cognitive flexibility,…

  16. Introduction: Links between Social Interaction and Executive Function

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lewis, Charlie; Carpendale, Jeremy I. M.

    2009-01-01

    The term executive function is used increasingly within developmental psychology and is often taken to refer to unfolding brain processes. We trace the origins of research on executive function to show that the link with social interaction has a long history. We suggest that a recent frenzy of research exploring methods for studying individual…

  17. Assessing Executive Functions: A Life-Span Perspective

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reynolds, Cecil R.; Horton, Arthur MacNeill, Jr.

    2008-01-01

    Despite many disagreements on the utility of neuropsychological applications in schools, executive function measures have been found to be useful across a variety of areas and ages. In addition, many disagreements are extant in discussions of the maturational course of the development of executive functioning abilities that are dependent on…

  18. Introduction: Links between Social Interaction and Executive Function

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lewis, Charlie; Carpendale, Jeremy I. M.

    2009-01-01

    The term executive function is used increasingly within developmental psychology and is often taken to refer to unfolding brain processes. We trace the origins of research on executive function to show that the link with social interaction has a long history. We suggest that a recent frenzy of research exploring methods for studying individual…

  19. A Unitary Executive Function Predicts Intelligence in Children

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brydges, Christopher R.; Reid, Corinne L.; Fox, Allison M.; Anderson, Mike

    2012-01-01

    Executive functions (EF) and intelligence are of critical importance to success in many everyday tasks. Working memory, or updating, which is one latent variable identified in confirmatory factor analytic models of executive functions, predicts intelligence (both fluid and crystallised) in adults, but inhibition and shifting do not (Friedman et…

  20. Executive Functions in Youth With Spastic Cerebral Palsy

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Pirila, Silja; van der Meere, Jaap J.; Rantanen, Kati; Jokiluoma, Maria; Eriksson, Kai

    2011-01-01

    Dependent on criteria used, between 35% and 53% of the participants with cerebral palsy fulfilled the criteria of clinically relevant executive function problems as defined by Conners' (1994) Continuous Performance Test. Executive function problems were noticed mainly in participants with bilateral

  1. Maternal Executive Function, Harsh Parenting, and Child Conduct Problems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deater-Deckard, Kirby; Wang, Zhe; Chen, Nan; Bell, Martha Ann

    2012-01-01

    Background: Maternal executive function and household regulation both are critical aspects of optimal childrearing, but their interplay is not understood. We tested the hypotheses that (a) the link between challenging child conduct problems and harsh parenting would be strongest for mothers with poorer executive function and weakest among those…

  2. Training and Transfer Effects of Executive Functions in Preschool Children

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thorell, Lisa B.; Lindqvist, Sofia; Nutley, Sissela Bergman; Bohlin, Gunilla; Klingberg, Torkel

    2009-01-01

    Executive functions, including working memory and inhibition, are of central importance to much of human behavior. Interventions intended to improve executive functions might therefore serve an important purpose. Previous studies show that working memory can be improved by training, but it is unknown if this also holds for inhibition, and whether…

  3. Executive Function Predicts Artificial Language Learning in Children and Adults

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kapa, Leah Lynn

    2013-01-01

    Prior research has established an executive function advantage among bilinguals as compared to monolingual peers. These non-linguistic cognitive advantages are largely assumed to result from the experience of managing two linguistic systems. However, the possibility remains that the relationship between bilingualism and executive function is…

  4. Maternal Executive Function, Harsh Parenting, and Child Conduct Problems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deater-Deckard, Kirby; Wang, Zhe; Chen, Nan; Bell, Martha Ann

    2012-01-01

    Background: Maternal executive function and household regulation both are critical aspects of optimal childrearing, but their interplay is not understood. We tested the hypotheses that (a) the link between challenging child conduct problems and harsh parenting would be strongest for mothers with poorer executive function and weakest among those…

  5. Executive Functions as Predictors of Math Learning Disabilities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Toll, Sylke W. M.; Van der Ven, Sanne H. G.; Kroesbergen, Evelyn H.; Van Luit, Johannes E. H.

    2011-01-01

    In the past years, an increasing number of studies have investigated executive functions as predictors of individual differences in mathematical abilities. The present longitudinal study was designed to investigate whether the executive functions shifting, inhibition, and working memory differ between low achieving and typically achieving children…

  6. Revisiting Executive Function Measurement: Implications for Lifespan Development

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wiebe, Sandra A.; McFall, G. Peggy

    2014-01-01

    Since Miyake and his colleagues (2000) published their seminal paper on the use of confirmatory factor analysis (CFA) to parse executive function (EF), CFA methods have become ubiquitous in EF research. In their interesting and thoughtful Focus article, "Executive Function: Formative Versus Reflective Measurement," Willoughby and…

  7. A Unitary Executive Function Predicts Intelligence in Children

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brydges, Christopher R.; Reid, Corinne L.; Fox, Allison M.; Anderson, Mike

    2012-01-01

    Executive functions (EF) and intelligence are of critical importance to success in many everyday tasks. Working memory, or updating, which is one latent variable identified in confirmatory factor analytic models of executive functions, predicts intelligence (both fluid and crystallised) in adults, but inhibition and shifting do not (Friedman et…

  8. Preschool executive functioning abilities predict early mathematics achievement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clark, Caron A C; Pritchard, Verena E; Woodward, Lianne J

    2010-09-01

    Impairments in executive function have been documented in school-age children with mathematical learning difficulties. However, the utility and specificity of preschool executive function abilities in predicting later mathematical achievement are poorly understood. This study examined linkages between children's developing executive function abilities at age 4 and children's subsequent achievement in mathematics at age 6, 1 year after school entry. The study sample consisted of a regionally representative cohort of 104 children followed prospectively from ages 2 to 6 years. At age 4, children completed a battery of executive function tasks that assessed planning, set shifting, and inhibitory control. Teachers completed the preschool version of the Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function. Clinical and classroom measures of children's mathematical achievement were collected at age 6. Results showed that children's performance on set shifting, inhibitory control, and general executive behavior measures during the preschool period accounted for substantial variability in children's early mathematical achievement at school. These associations persisted even after individual differences in general cognitive ability and reading achievement were taken into account. Findings suggest that early measures of executive function may be useful in identifying children who may experience difficulties learning mathematical skills and concepts. They also suggest that the scaffolding of these executive skills could potentially be a useful additional component in early mathematics education.

  9. Questionnaire-based assessment of executive functioning: Psychometrics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Castellanos, Irina; Kronenberger, William G; Pisoni, David B

    2016-11-14

    The psychometric properties of the Learning, Executive, and Attention Functioning (LEAF) scale were investigated in an outpatient clinical pediatric sample. As a part of clinical testing, the LEAF scale, which broadly measures neuropsychological abilities related to executive functioning and learning, was administered to parents of 118 children and adolescents referred for psychological testing at a pediatric psychology clinic; 85 teachers also completed LEAF scales to assess reliability across different raters and settings. Scores on neuropsychological tests of executive functioning and academic achievement were abstracted from charts. Psychometric analyses of the LEAF scale demonstrated satisfactory internal consistency, parent-teacher inter-rater reliability in the small to large effect size range, and test-retest reliability in the large effect size range, similar to values for other executive functioning checklists. Correlations between corresponding subscales on the LEAF and other behavior checklists were large, while most correlations with neuropsychological tests of executive functioning and achievement were significant but in the small to medium range. Results support the utility of the LEAF as a reliable and valid questionnaire-based assessment of delays and disturbances in executive functioning and learning. Applications and advantages of the LEAF and other questionnaire measures of executive functioning in clinical neuropsychology settings are discussed.

  10. Assessing executive functions in preschoolers using Shape School Task

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marta Nieto

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Over the last two decades, there has been a growing interest in the study of the development of executive functions in preschool children due to their relationship with different cognitive, psychological, social and academic domains. Early detection of individual differences in executive functioning can have major implications for basic and applied research. Consequently, there is a key need for assessment tools adapted to preschool skills: Shape School has been shown to be a suitable task for this purpose. Our study uses Shape School as the main task to analyze development of inhibition, task-switching and working memory in a sample of 304 preschoolers (age range 3.25-6.50 years. Additionally, we include cognitive tasks for the evaluation of verbal variables (vocabulary, word reasoning and short-term memory and performance variables (picture completion and symbol search, so as to analyze their relationship with executive functions. Our results show age-associated improvements in executive functions and the cognitive variables assessed. Furthermore, correlation analyses reveal positive relationships between executive functions and the other cognitive variables. More specifically, using structural equation modeling and including age direct and indirect effects, our results suggest that executive functions explain to a greater extent performance on verbal and performance tasks. These findings provide further information to support research that considers preschool age to be a crucial period for the development of executive functions and their relationship with other cognitive processes

  11. Executive Functions in Children with Autism Spectrum Disorders

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robinson, Sally; Goddard, Lorna; Dritschel, Barbara; Wisley, Mary; Howlin, Pat

    2009-01-01

    Executive dysfunction is a characteristic impairment of individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD). However whether such deficits are related to autism per se, or to associated intellectual disability is unclear. This paper examines executive functions in a group of children with ASD (N = 54, all IQ greater than or equal to 70) in relation…

  12. Hot and cold executive functions in youth with psychotic symptoms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    MacKenzie, L E; Patterson, V C; Zwicker, A; Drobinin, V; Fisher, H L; Abidi, S; Greve, A N; Bagnell, A; Propper, L; Alda, M; Pavlova, B; Uher, R

    2017-06-07

    Psychotic symptoms are common in children and adolescents and may be early manifestations of liability to severe mental illness (SMI), including schizophrenia. SMI and psychotic symptoms are associated with impairment in executive functions. However, previous studies have not differentiated between 'cold' and 'hot' executive functions. We hypothesized that the propensity for psychotic symptoms is specifically associated with impairment in 'hot' executive functions, such as decision-making in the context of uncertain rewards and losses. In a cohort of 156 youth (mean age 12.5, range 7-24 years) enriched for familial risk of SMI, we measured cold and hot executive functions with the spatial working memory (SWM) task (total errors) and the Cambridge Gambling Task (decision-making), respectively. We assessed psychotic symptoms using the semi-structured Kiddie Schedule for Affective Disorders and Schizophrenia interview, Structured Interview for Prodromal Syndromes, Funny Feelings, and Schizophrenia Proneness Instrument - Child and Youth version. In total 69 (44.23%) youth reported psychotic symptoms on one or more assessments. Cold executive functioning, indexed with SWM errors, was not significantly related to psychotic symptoms [odds ratio (OR) 1.36, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.85-2.17, p = 0.204). Poor hot executive functioning, indexed as decision-making score, was associated with psychotic symptoms after adjustment for age, sex and familial clustering (OR 2.37, 95% CI 1.25-4.50, p = 0.008). The association between worse hot executive functions and psychotic symptoms remained significant in sensitivity analyses controlling for general cognitive ability and cold executive functions. Impaired hot executive functions may be an indicator of risk and a target for pre-emptive early interventions in youth.

  13. Machiavellianism and executive functioning in patients with delusional disorder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brüne, Martin; Basilowski, Miriam; Bömmer, Isabel; Juckel, Georg; Assion, Hans-Jörg

    2010-02-01

    Previous research has demonstrated that patients with Delusional Disorder are impaired in executive functioning that affects performance on social cognitive tasks. In patients with Parkinson's disease, poor executive control induces an increase in "Machiavellianism," a term that refers to opportunistic behaviors that aim at exploiting and manipulating others. Accordingly, the association between Machiavellianism in Delusional Disorder and executive functioning deficits was examined. Machiavellianism and executive functioning were measured in 22 patients with Delusional Disorder and compared with a group of 22 healthy controls matched for sex, (premorbid) intelligence, and education. Patients and controls did not differ regarding Machiavellianism scores, education level, or intelligence. However, patients with Delusional Disorder performed more poorly on an executive functioning task. Impaired executive functioning was associated with greater Machiavellianism, particularly cynical views on human nature, but not with intelligence or illness duration. Similar to findings in patients with Parkinson's disease, Machiavellianism in Delusional Disorder was associated with poorer executive functioning. This finding indicates that frontal lobe dysfunction may influence interpersonal attitudes and personality in Delusional Disorder.

  14. Development of metacognitive and emotional executive functions in children.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ardila, Alfredo

    2013-01-01

    It has been proposed that two major components of executive functions can be distinguished: (1) one related to complex cognition (metacognition, such as planning, problem solving, etc.); (2) the other related to coordinating and controlling emotional behavior. Contemporary neuroimaging techniques have demonstrated that there are two distinct functional-anatomical networks within the prefrontal cortex: one associated with cognitive control and the other associated with value based decision making-each related to specific frontal-lobe areas. Metacognitive (but not emotional) executive functions have been demonstrated to be correlated with general intellectual level (intelligence). Research has shown that emotional executive functions (such as attention control) develop earlier in life (during the 1st year), before the development of metacognitive executive functions (such as planning and verbal fluency), which develop around the age of 3 and are correlated with the development of a grammatical language.

  15. Mindfulness meditation practice and executive functioning: Breaking down the benefit.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gallant, Sara N

    2016-02-01

    This paper focuses on evidence for mindfulness meditation-related benefits to executive functioning, processes important for much of human volitional behaviour. Miyake et al. (2000) have shown that executive functions can be fractionated into three distinct domains including inhibition, working memory updating, and mental set shifting. Considering these separable domains, it is important to determine whether the effects of mindfulness can generalize to all three sub-functions or are specific to certain domains. To address this, the current review applied Miyake et al.'s (2000) fractionated model of executive functioning to the mindfulness literature. Empirical studies assessing the benefits of mindfulness to measures tapping the inhibition, updating, and shifting components of executive functioning were examined. Results suggest a relatively specific as opposed to general benefit resulting from mindfulness, with consistent inhibitory improvement, but more variable advantages to the updating and shifting domains. Recommendations surrounding application of mindfulness practice and future research are discussed.

  16. A short executive function training program improves preschoolers’ working memory

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Emma eBlakey

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available Cognitive training has been shown to improve executive functions in middle childhood and adulthood. However, fewer studies have targeted the preschool years – a time when executive functions undergo rapid development. The present study tested the effects of a short four session executive function training program in 54 four-year-olds. The training group significantly improved their working memory from pre-training relative to an active control group. Notably, this effect extended to a task sharing few surface features with the trained tasks, and continued to be apparent three months later. In addition, the benefits of training extended to a measure of mathematical reasoning three months later, indicating that training executive functions during the preschool years has the potential to convey benefits that are both long-lasting and wide-ranging.

  17. Early development of executive functions: a differential study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sylvia Sastre-Riba

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available The ontogeny of executive functions is essential in explaining differential and normative developmental trends. Executive functions must be studied from an early age given their consequential effects on mental flexibility, monitoring information, planning, and cognitive control. We propose a differential study in alternative developmental courses through observing typical babies, Down syndrome babies, and babies with risk-factors at birth (due to low weight or to congenital hypothyroidism. Applymg Systematic Observational Methodology, spontaneous babies' activity was registered. The results indicated that: a Typical babies showed better shifting and action flexibility in order to obtain a goal, thus better results; b Among the higher risk-babies, the lower efficacy in executive functioning was observed in underweight babies. Those with hypothyroidism were more in line with the typical babies; c Underweight babies showed a good level of combining actions but they obtained inferior results; d Down syndrome babies displayed more executive functioning difficulty, lower flexibility, high perseveration and less error detection.

  18. Hot and cold executive functions in youth with psychotic symptoms

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    MacKenzie, L E; Patterson, V C; Zwicker, A

    2017-01-01

    not differentiated between 'cold' and 'hot' executive functions. We hypothesized that the propensity for psychotic symptoms is specifically associated with impairment in 'hot' executive functions, such as decision-making in the context of uncertain rewards and losses. METHODS: In a cohort of 156 youth (mean age 12......BACKGROUND: Psychotic symptoms are common in children and adolescents and may be early manifestations of liability to severe mental illness (SMI), including schizophrenia. SMI and psychotic symptoms are associated with impairment in executive functions. However, previous studies have.......5, range 7-24 years) enriched for familial risk of SMI, we measured cold and hot executive functions with the spatial working memory (SWM) task (total errors) and the Cambridge Gambling Task (decision-making), respectively. We assessed psychotic symptoms using the semi-structured Kiddie Schedule...

  19. A real-life, ecologically valid test of executive functioning : The executive secretarial task

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lamberts, Kirsten F.; Evans, Jonathan J.; Spikman, Jacoba M.

    2010-01-01

    A major goal of neuropsychological assessment is predicting a person's level of functioning in daily life. Making predictions about everyday executive functioning based on tests is problematic because of the contrast between demands made in the test environment and demands made in everyday life (Sha

  20. Effects of Sleep Deprivation on Dissociated Components of Executive Functioning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tucker, Adrienne M.; Whitney, Paul; Belenky, Gregory; Hinson, John M.; Van Dongen, Hans P.A.

    2010-01-01

    Study Objectives: We studied the effects of sleep deprivation on executive functions using a task battery which included a modified Sternberg task, a probed recall task, and a phonemic verbal fluency task. These tasks were selected because they allow dissociation of some important executive processes from non-executive components of cognition. Design: Subjects were randomized to a total sleep deprivation condition or a control condition. Performance on the executive functions task battery was assessed at baseline, after 51 h of total sleep deprivation (or no sleep deprivation in the control group), and following 2 nights of recovery sleep, at fixed time of day (11:00). Performance was also measured repeatedly throughout the experiment on a control task battery, for which the effects of total sleep deprivation had been documented in previously published studies. Setting: Six consecutive days and nights in a controlled laboratory environment with continuous behavioral monitoring. Participants: Twenty-three healthy adults (age range 22–38 y; 11 women). Twelve subjects were randomized to the sleep deprivation condition; the others were controls. Results: Performance on the control task battery was considerably degraded during sleep deprivation. Overall performance on the modified Sternberg task also showed impairment during sleep deprivation, as compared to baseline and recovery and compared to controls. However, two dissociated components of executive functioning on this task—working memory scanning efficiency and resistance to proactive interference—were maintained at levels equivalent to baseline. On the probed recall task, resistance to proactive interference was also preserved. Executive aspects of performance on the phonemic verbal fluency task showed improvement during sleep deprivation, as did overall performance on this task. Conclusion: Sleep deprivation affected distinct components of cognitive processing differentially. Dissociated non-executive

  1. Trait Rumination, Depression, and Executive Functions in Early Adolescence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wagner, Clara A.; Alloy, Lauren B.; Abramson, Lyn Y.

    2014-01-01

    Although deficits in executive functions have been linked with both depression and rumination in adulthood, the nature of the relationship between these constructs is not well understood and remains understudied in adolescence. The present study examined the relationship of rumination and depression to deficits in executive functions in early adolescence, a critical developmental period for the emergence of depression and rumination and the development of executive functions. Participants were 486 early adolescents (52.7% female; 47.1% African American, 48.8% Caucasian; 4.2% Biracial/Multiracial/Other; M age = 12.88 years; SD = .62) and their mothers, recruited through local schools. Measures included (a) a semi-structured diagnostic interview of the mother and adolescent, (b) youth self-report forms assessing depressive symptoms and trait rumination, (c) mother-report forms assessing demographic information, and (d) behavioral tests of executive function (sustained, selective and divided attention, attentional set shifting, and working memory). Gender moderated rumination-set shifting associations, such that rumination predicted better set shifting in boys only. The current level of depressive symptoms moderated rumination-sustained attention associations, such that rumination predicted better sustained attention in those with low levels of depressive symptoms and worse sustained attention in those with high levels of depressive symptoms. Rumination did not predict performance on other measures of executive functions. Likewise, depressive symptoms and diagnosis were not associated with executive functions. Implications for future research are discussed. PMID:24839132

  2. Direct and indirect influences of executive functions on mathematics achievement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cragg, Lucy; Keeble, Sarah; Richardson, Sophie; Roome, Hannah E; Gilmore, Camilla

    2017-02-08

    Achievement in mathematics is predicted by an individual's domain-specific factual knowledge, procedural skill and conceptual understanding as well as domain-general executive function skills. In this study we investigated the extent to which executive function skills contribute to these three components of mathematical knowledge, whether this mediates the relationship between executive functions and overall mathematics achievement, and if these relationships change with age. Two hundred and ninety-three participants aged between 8 and 25years completed a large battery of mathematics and executive function tests. Domain-specific skills partially mediated the relationship between executive functions and mathematics achievement: Inhibitory control within the numerical domain was associated with factual knowledge and procedural skill, which in turn was associated with mathematical achievement. Working memory contributed to mathematics achievement indirectly through factual knowledge, procedural skill and, to a lesser extent, conceptual understanding. There remained a substantial direct pathway between working memory and mathematics achievement however, which may reflect the role of working memory in identifying and constructing problem representations. These relationships were remarkably stable from 8years through to young adulthood. Our findings help to refine existing multi-component frameworks of mathematics and understand the mechanisms by which executive functions support mathematics achievement.

  3. Implications of infant cognition for executive functions at age 11.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rose, Susan A; Feldman, Judith F; Jankowski, Jeffery J

    2012-01-01

    Recent work suggests that executive functions, the cornerstone of higher-level cognitive operations, are driven by basic information processing abilities. Using structural equation modeling, with latent variables, the present study provides the first evidence that this driving force begins in infancy, such that abilities in infancy predict executive functions at age 11. Information processing abilities in three domains (attention, processing speed, and memory) were assessed when participants were infants (7 and 12 months) and toddlers (24 and 36 months) and were used to predict three executive functions (working memory, inhibition, and shifting) when participants were 11 years old. A model relating infant abilities to age-11 executive functions fit well, and accounted for 9% to 19% of the variance in the executive functions. Paths from both speed and memory in infancy to age-11 working memory were significant, as was the path from Speed in infancy to age-11 Shifting. A model using abilities in toddlerhood as predictors fit similarly. These findings implicate early basic cognitive abilities in the development of executive functions.

  4. Motor preparation, motor execution, attention, and executive functions in attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klimkeit, Ester I; Mattingley, Jason B; Sheppard, Dianne M; Lee, Paul; Bradshaw, John L

    2005-04-01

    Attention and executive functions were investigated in medicated and unmedicated children with ADHD combined type using a novel selective reaching task. This task involved responding as rapidly as possible to a target while at times having to ignore a distractor. Results indicated that unmedicated children with ADHD showed slow and inaccurate responding. Slow responding reflected problems at the stage of movement preparation but not movement execution. An attentional impairment, rather than a motor planning problem per se, appeared to underlie the slow movement preparation. Inaccurate responding reflected problems with response inhibition and selective attention, impulsivity, set-shifting, and difficulties in maintaining vigilance. Although medicated children with ADHD did not show slow movement preparation, they did show some response inaccuracy, resulting especially from impulsive responding. These findings suggest that ADHD is characterized by slow motor preparation (but not motor execution), and deficits in selective attention, vigilance, and executive functions. Preliminary results suggest that stimulant medication may resolve some of these motor, attentional and executive function deficits.

  5. Executive Functions in Children and Adolescents With Autism Spectrum Disorder

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fernanda Rasch Czermainski

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available The literature has shown a strong relationship between executive dysfunction and Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD, although there is no consensus on which subprocesses of executive functioning are impaired and/or preserved in this condition. This study aimed to investigate executive function and working memory in children and adolescents with ASD (n = 11 compared to children and adolescents with typical development (n = 19 matched by age, formal education, and nonverbal IQ. The tests used were: Raven’s Colored Progressive Matrices, Stroop Test, Trail Making Test, Rey’s Complex Figure Test, Digit span, Pseudowords span, Working memory, Verbal fluency (orthographic and semantic and Go/no go. The results demonstrate impairment of executive function in the clinical group, especially in planning, flexibility, inhibition, and also visuospatial working memory.

  6. The Disconnected Brain and Executive Function Decline in Aging.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fjell, Anders M; Sneve, Markus H; Grydeland, Håkon; Storsve, Andreas B; Walhovd, Kristine B

    2017-03-01

    Higher order speeded cognitive abilities depend on efficient coordination of activity across the brain, rendering them vulnerable to age reductions in structural and functional brain connectivity. The concept of "disconnected aging" has been invoked, suggesting that degeneration of connections between distant brain regions cause cognitive reductions. However, it has not been shown that changes in cognitive functions over time can be explained by simultaneous changes in brain connectivity. We followed 119 young and middle-aged (23-52 years) and older (63-86 years) adults for 3.3 years with repeated assessments of structural and functional brain connectivity and executive functions. We found unique age-related longitudinal reductions in executive function over and above changes in more basic cognitive processes. Intriguingly, 82.5% of the age-related decline in executive function could be explained by changes in connectivity over time. While both structural and functional connectivity changes were related to longitudinal reductions in executive function, only structural connectivity change could explain the age-specific decline. This suggests that the major part of the age-related reductions in executive function can be attributed to micro- and macrostructural alterations in brain connectivity. Although correlational in nature, we believe the present results constitute evidence for a "disconnected brain" view on cognitive aging. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  7. [Ecological executive function characteristics and effects of executive function on quality of life in young adult epileptics].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Lanlan; Zhou, Nong

    2014-05-06

    To explore the characteristics of ecological executive function in young adults with idiopathic or probably symptomatic epilepsy and examine the effects of executive function on quality of life. Fifty-five epileptics (EP) and 39 matched healthy controls (HC) aged 18-44 years at our hospital were selected. The differences in ecological executive function and quality of life were compared between two groups with the Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function-adult version (BRIEF-A) and QOLIE-31. Comparing with controls, the epileptics yielded higher scores significantly on most subscales of BRIEF-A (P life and total score in QOLIE-31(t = -3.138, -3.564, -2.948, P life in epilepsy.

  8. NIH EXAMINER: conceptualization and development of an executive function battery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kramer, Joel H; Mungas, Dan; Possin, Katherine L; Rankin, Katherine P; Boxer, Adam L; Rosen, Howard J; Bostrom, Alan; Sinha, Lena; Berhel, Ashley; Widmeyer, Mary

    2014-01-01

    Executive functioning is widely targeted when human cognition is assessed, but there is little consensus on how it should be operationalized and measured. Recognizing the difficulties associated with establishing standard operational definitions of executive functioning, the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke entered into a contract with the University of California-San Francisco to develop psychometrically robust executive measurement tools that would be accepted by the neurology clinical trials and clinical research communities. This effort, entitled Executive Abilities: Measures and Instruments for Neurobehavioral Evaluation and Research (EXAMINER), resulted in a series of tasks targeting working memory, inhibition, set shifting, fluency, insight, planning, social cognition and behavior. We describe battery conceptualization and development, data collection, scale construction based on item response theory, and lay the foundation for studying the battery's utility and validity for specific assessment and research goals.

  9. ADHD and executive functioning deficits in OCD youths who hoard.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Park, Jennifer M; Samuels, Jack F; Grados, Marco A; Riddle, Mark A; Bienvenu, O Joseph; Goes, Fernando S; Cullen, Bernadette; Wang, Ying; Krasnow, Janice; Murphy, Dennis L; Rasmussen, Steven A; McLaughlin, Nicole C; Piacentini, John; Pauls, David L; Stewart, S Evelyn; Shugart, Yin-Yao; Maher, Brion; Pulver, Ann E; Knowles, James A; Greenberg, Benjamin D; Fyer, Abby J; McCracken, James T; Nestadt, Gerald; Geller, Daniel A

    2016-11-01

    Hoarding is common among youth with obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), with up to 26% of OCD youth exhibiting hoarding symptoms. Recent evidence from adult hoarding and OCD cohorts suggests that hoarding symptoms are associated with executive functioning deficits similar to those observed in subjects with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). However, while hoarding behavior often onsets during childhood, there is little information about executive function deficits and ADHD in affected children and adolescents. The study sample included 431 youths (ages 6-17 years) diagnosed with OCD who participated in the OCD Collaborative Genetics Study and the OCD Collaborative Genetics Association Study and completed a series of clinician-administered and parent report assessments, including diagnostic interviews and measures of executive functioning (Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Functioning; BRIEF) and hoarding severity (Hoarding Rating Scale-Interview; HRS-I). 113 youths (26%) had clinically significant levels of hoarding compulsions. Youths with and without hoarding differed significantly on most executive functioning subdomains and composite indices as measured by the parent-rated BRIEF. Groups did not differ in the frequency of full DSM-IV ADHD diagnoses; however, the hoarding group had significantly greater number of inattention and hyperactivity symptoms compared to the non-hoarding group. In multivariate models, we found that overall BRIEF scores were related to hoarding severity, adjusting for age, gender and ADHD symptoms. These findings suggest an association between hoarding and executive functioning deficits in youths with OCD, and assessing executive functioning may be important for investigating the etiology and treatment of children and adolescents with hoarding and OCD.

  10. The union of narrative and executive function: different but complementary

    OpenAIRE

    Friend, Margaret; Bates, Raven Phoenix

    2014-01-01

    Oral narrative production develops dramatically from 3 to 5 years of age, and is a key factor in a child's ability to communicate about the world. Concomitant with this are developments in executive function (EF). For example, executive attention and behavioral inhibition show marked development beginning around 4 years of age. Both EF and oral narrative abilities have important implications for academic success, but the relationship between them is not well understood. The present paper util...

  11. The union of narrative and executive function: Different but complementary

    OpenAIRE

    Margaret eFriend; Raven eBates

    2014-01-01

    Oral narrative production develops dramatically from 3 to 5 years of age, and is a key factor in a child’s ability to communicate about the world. Concomitant with this are developments in executive function (EF). For example, executive attention and behavioral inhibition show marked development beginning around 4 years of age. Both EF and oral narrative abilities have important implications for academic success, but the relationship between them is not well understood. The present paper...

  12. Executive functions in morality, religion, and paranormal beliefs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wain, Omar; Spinella, Marcello

    2007-01-01

    Moral, religious, and paranormal beliefs share some degree of overlap and play important roles in guiding peoples' behavior. Although partly cultural phenomena, they also have neurobiological components based on functional neuroimaging studies and research in clinical populations. Because all three show relationships to prefrontal system functioning, the current study examined whether they related to executive functions as measured by the Executive Function Inventory in a community sample. As in previous research, religious beliefs related positively to both moral attitudes and paranormal beliefs. Moral attitudes, however, did not relate to paranormal beliefs. Paranormal beliefs related inversely to impulse control and organization, whereas small positive correlations occurred between traditional religious beliefs, impulse control, and empathy. Moral attitudes, on the other hand, showed consistent positive correlations with all executive functions measured, independent of demographic influences. These findings concordantly support that prefrontal systems play a role in morality, religion, and paranormal beliefs.

  13. [Memory processes and executive functioning: novel trends for research].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Collette, Fabienne; Angel, Lucie

    2015-01-01

    The existence of processes common to memory systems and executive functioning was evidenced by studies in the domain of cerebral neuroimaging, individual differences (mainly in normal aging) and, to a lesser extent, neuropsychology. Executive functioning depends on a large antero-posterior brain network, some regions of which (the middle dorsolateral and ventrolateral cortex, the dorsal anterior cingulate cortex) are involved in a series of executive processes, but also in encoding and retrieval of information in episodic memory and short-term memory. A consequence of lesions in frontal areas is to impair strategical organization of the information to-be-processed (an executive process) and thus leads to a lower memory capacity in frontal patients. Moreover, executive abilities will influence both memory efficiency and the associated brain networks even in people without brain pathology. These data attest to the importance of the relationships between executive and memory processes for an optimal cognitive functioning. Recent advances in neuroimaging and electrophysiology data acquisition and analysis techniques should allow us to better determine and understand the fashion in which these relationships work. © Société de Biologie, 2016.

  14. Executive Functioning: Relationship with High School Student Role Performance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Donna P. Mann

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND. Student role performance for academic success in secondary education is under represented in the occupational therapy literature, despite the persistently high dropout rate in the United States (Stillwell & Sable, 2013. Executive dysfunction is one of many possible contributors to difficulties in the classroom (Dirette & Kolak, 2004 and is a better indicator of school performance than IQ (Diamond, 2012. This research examined executive functioning of both alternative and traditional high school students to determine if there is a relationship between executive function and academic success as measured by cumulative grade point average. METHOD. 132 high school students from three different school settings were given the Behavioral Rating Inventory of Executive Function-Self Report (BRIEF-SR. The Global Executive Composite (GEC and individual subscale scores were compared to GPA. RESULTS. No significant difference in GEC scores was found among settings. Subscale scores for “inhibition” and “task completion” were significantly different in the alternative school setting. A weak negative correlation was seen between the GEC and GPA. However, academically unsuccessful students scored statistically lower on the GEC. CONCLUSION. Global executive dysfunction was not predicted by setting but was seen in academically unsuccessful students.

  15. Executive Function and Postural Instability in People with Parkinson's Disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Dong; Cole, Michael H.; Mengersen, Kerrie; Silburn, Peter A.; Qiu, Feng; Graepel, Cara; Kerr, Graham K.

    2014-01-01

    The specific aspects of cognition contributing to balance and gait have not been clarified in people with Parkinson's disease (PD). Twenty PD participants and twenty age- and gender-matched healthy controls were assessed on cognition and clinical mobility tests. General cognition was assessed with the Mini Mental State Exam and Addenbrooke's Cognitive Exam. Executive function was evaluated using the Trail Making Tests (TMT-A and TMT-B) and a computerized cognitive battery which included a series of choice reaction time (CRT) tests. Clinical gait and balance measures included the Tinetti, Timed Up & Go, Berg Balance, and Functional Reach tests. PD participants performed significantly worse than the controls on the tests of cognitive and executive function, balance, and gait. PD participants took longer on Trail Making Tests, CRT-Location, and CRT-Colour (inhibition response). Furthermore, executive function, particularly longer times on CRT-Distracter and greater errors on the TMT-B, was associated with worse balance and gait performance in the PD group. Measures of general cognition were not associated with balance and gait measures in either group. For PD participants, attention and executive function were impaired. Components of executive function, particularly those involving inhibition response and distracters, were associated with poorer balance and gait performance in PD. PMID:25136474

  16. Higher-Order Mentalising and Executive Functioning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-11-01

    Higher-order mentalising is the ability to represent the beliefs and desires of other people at multiple, iterated levels - a capacity that sets humans apart from other species. However, there has not yet been a systematic attempt to determine what cognitive processes underlie this ability. Here we present three correlational studies assessing the extent to which performance on higher-order mentalising tasks relates to emotion recognition, self-reported empathy and self-inhibition. In Study 1a and 1b, examining emotion recognition and empathy, a relationship was identified between individual differences in the ability to mentalise and an emotion recognition task (the Reading the Mind in the Eyes task), but no correlation was found with the Empathy Quotient, a self-report scale of empathy. Study 2 investigated whether a relationship exists between individual mentalising abilities and four different forms of self-inhibition: motor inhibition, executive inhibition, automatic imitation and temporal discounting. Results demonstrate that only temporal discounting performance relates to mentalising ability; suggesting that cognitive skills relevant to representation of the minds of others' are not influenced by the ability to perform more basic inhibition. Higher-order mentalising appears to rely on the cognitive architecture that serves both low-level social cognition (emotion recognition), and complex forms of inhibition.

  17. Decreased functional connectivity in an executive control network is related to impaired executive function in Internet gaming disorder

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dong, Guangheng; Lin, Xiao; Potenza, Marc N.

    2015-01-01

    Background Resting brain spontaneous neural activities across cortical regions have been correlated with specific functional properties in psychiatric groups. Individuals with Internet gaming disorder (IGD) demonstrate impaired executive control. Thus, it is important to examine executive control networks (ECNs) during resting states and their relationships to executive control during task performance. Methods Thirty-five IGD and 36 healthy control participants underwent a resting-state fMRI scan and performed a Stroop task inside and outside of the MRI scanner. Correlations between Stroop effect and functional connectivity among ECN regions of interest (ROIs) were calculated within and between groups. Results IGD subjects show lower functional connectivity in ECNs than do HC participants during resting state; functional-connectivity measures in ECNs were negatively correlated with Stroop effect and positively correlated with brain activations in executive-control regions across groups. Within groups, negative trends were found between Stroop effect and functional connectivity in ECNs in IGD and HC groups, separately; positive trends were found between functional connectivity in ECNs and brain activations in Stroop task in IGD and HC groups, separately. Conclusions Higher functional connectivity in ECNs may underlie better executive control and may provide resilience with respect to IGD. Lower functional connectivity in ECNs may represent an important feature in understanding and treating IGD. PMID:25445475

  18. Executive function processes predict mobility outcomes in older adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gothe, Neha P; Fanning, Jason; Awick, Elizabeth; Chung, David; Wójcicki, Thomas R; Olson, Erin A; Mullen, Sean P; Voss, Michelle; Erickson, Kirk I; Kramer, Arthur F; McAuley, Edward

    2014-02-01

    To examine the relationship between performance on executive function measures and subsequent mobility outcomes in community-dwelling older adults. Randomized controlled clinical trial. Champaign-Urbana, Illinois. Community-dwelling older adults (N = 179; mean age 66.4). A 12-month exercise trial with two arms: an aerobic exercise group and a stretching and strengthening group. Established cognitive tests of executive function (flanker task, task switching, and a dual-task paradigm) and the Wisconsin card sort test. Mobility was assessed using the timed 8-foot up and go test and times to climb up and down a flight of stairs. Participants completed the cognitive tests at baseline and the mobility measures at baseline and after 12 months of the intervention. Multiple regression analyses were conducted to determine whether baseline executive function predicted postintervention functional performance after controlling for age, sex, education, cardiorespiratory fitness, and baseline mobility levels. Selective baseline executive function measurements, particularly performance on the flanker task (β = 0.15-0.17) and the Wisconsin card sort test (β = 0.11-0.16) consistently predicted mobility outcomes at 12 months. The estimates were in the expected direction, such that better baseline performance on the executive function measures predicted better performance on the timed mobility tests independent of intervention. Executive functions of inhibitory control, mental set shifting, and attentional flexibility were predictive of functional mobility. Given the literature associating mobility limitations with disability, morbidity, and mortality, these results are important for understanding the antecedents to poor mobility function that well-designed interventions to improve cognitive performance can attenuate. © 2014, Copyright the Authors Journal compilation © 2014, The American Geriatrics Society.

  19. Neuroanatomical substrates of executive functions: Beyond prefrontal structures.

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    Bettcher, Brianne M; Mungas, Dan; Patel, Nihar; Elofson, Jonathan; Dutt, Shubir; Wynn, Matthew; Watson, Christa L; Stephens, Melanie; Walsh, Christine M; Kramer, Joel H

    2016-05-01

    Executive functions are often considered lynchpin "frontal lobe tasks", despite accumulating evidence that a broad network of anterior and posterior brain structures supports them. Using a latent variable modelling approach, we assessed whether prefrontal grey matter volumes independently predict executive function performance when statistically differentiated from global atrophy and individual non-frontal lobar volume contributions. We further examined whether fronto-parietal white matter microstructure underlies and independently contributes to executive functions. We developed a latent variable model to decompose lobar grey matter volumes into a global grey matter factor and specific lobar volumes (i.e. prefrontal, parietal, temporal, occipital) that were independent of global grey matter. We then added mean fractional anisotropy (FA) for the superior longitudinal fasciculus (dorsal portion), corpus callosum, and cingulum bundle (dorsal portion) to models that included grey matter volumes related to cognitive variables in previous analyses. Results suggested that the 2-factor model (shifting/inhibition, updating/working memory) plus an information processing speed factor best explained our executive function data in a sample of 202 community dwelling older adults, and was selected as the base measurement model for further analyses. Global grey matter was related to the executive function and speed variables in all four lobar models, but independent contributions of the frontal lobes were not significant. In contrast, when assessing the effect of white matter microstructure, cingulum FA made significant independent contributions to all three executive function and speed variables and corpus callosum FA was independently related to shifting/inhibition and speed. Findings from the current study indicate that while prefrontal grey matter volumes are significantly associated with cognitive neuroscience measures of shifting/inhibition and working memory in healthy

  20. A functional neuroimaging study of motivation and executive function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taylor, Stephan F; Welsh, Robert C; Wager, Tor D; Phan, K Luan; Fitzgerald, Kate D; Gehring, William J

    2004-03-01

    Executive functions, such as working memory, must intersect with functions that determine value for the organism. Functional imaging work in humans and single-unit recordings in non-human primates provide evidence that PFC might integrate motivational context with working memory. With functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), we addressed the question of motivation and working memory, using a trial-related design in an object-working memory task. The design permitted the analysis of BOLD signal at separate stages, corresponding to encoding, maintenance, and retrieval. Subjects were motivated by a financial incentive during the task, such that they could gain a high or a low reward. The two different levels of reward also entailed greater or lesser risk of losing money for incorrect responses. In the high, relative to the low, reward condition, subjects shifted response bias, and showed a trend to greater sensitivity. We found main effects in fMRI BOLD signal for reward, which overlapped with BOLD effects for maintenance of information, in the right superior frontal sulcus and bilateral intraparietal sulcus. We also found an interaction between reward and retrieval from working memory in the right dorsolateral prefrontal cortex. Main effects of load and reward occurred in adjacent regions of the ventrolateral PFC during retrieval. The data demonstrate that when subjects perform a simple working memory task, financial incentives motivate performance and interact with some of the same neural networks that process various stages of working memory. Areas of overlap and interaction may integrate information about value, or they may represent a general effect of motivation increasing neural effort.

  1. Apathy is associated with executive functioning in first episode psychosis

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    Agartz Ingrid

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The underlying nature of negative symptoms in psychosis is poorly understood. Investigation of the relationship between the different negative subsymptoms and neurocognition is one approach to understand more of the underlying nature. Apathy, one of the subsymptoms, is also a common symptom in other brain disorders. Its association with neurocognition, in particular executive functioning, is well documented in other brain disorders, but only studied in one former study of chronic patients with schizophrenia. This study investigates the association between apathy and neurocognitive functioning in patients with first episode psychosis (FEP, with the hypothesis that apathy is more associated with tests representing executive function than tests representing other neurocognitive domains. Methods Seventy-one FEP patients were assessed with an extensive neuropsychological test battery. Level of apathy was assessed with the abridged Apathy Evaluation Scale (AES-C-Apathy. Results AES-C-Apathy was only significantly associated with tests from the executive domain [Semantic fluency (r = .37, p Conclusion We replicated in FEP patients the relationship between apathy and executive functioning reported in another study for chronic patients with schizophrenia. We also found apathy in FEP to have the same relationship to executive functioning, as assessed with the Verbal fluency tests, as that reported in patients with other brain disorders, pointing to a common underlying nature of this symptom across disorders.

  2. The distinctive role of executive functions in implicit emotion regulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sperduti, Marco; Makowski, Dominique; Arcangeli, Margherita; Wantzen, Prany; Zalla, Tiziana; Lemaire, Stéphane; Dokic, Jérôme; Pelletier, Jérôme; Piolino, Pascale

    2017-02-01

    Several theoretical models stress the role of executive functions in emotion regulation (ER). However, most of the previous studies on ER employed explicit regulatory strategies that could have engaged executive functions, beyond regulatory processes per se. Recently, there has been renewed interest in implicit forms of ER, believed to be closer to daily-life requirements. While various studies have shown that implicit and explicit ER engage partially overlapping neurocognitive processes, the contribution of different executive functions in implicit ER has not been investigated. In the present study, we presented participants with negatively valenced pictures of varying emotional intensity preceded by short texts describing them as either fictional or real. This manipulation was meant to induce a spontaneous emotional down-regulation. We recorded electrodermal activity (EDA) and subjective reports of emotion arousal. Executive functions (updating, switching, and inhibition) were also assessed. No difference was found between the fictional and real condition on EDA. A diminished self-reported arousal was observed, however, when pictures were described as fictional for high- and mild-intensity material, but not for neutral material. The amount of down-regulation in the fictional condition was found to be predicted by interindividual variability in updating performances, but not by the other measures of executive functions, suggesting its implication even in implicit forms of ER. The relationship between down-regulation and updating was significant only for high-intensity material. We discuss the role of updating in relation to the consciousness of one's emotional state.

  3. Executive function influences sedentary behavior: A longitudinal study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Loprinzi, Paul D.; Nooe, Allison

    2016-01-01

    Background: No study has evaluated the effects of executive function on follow-up sedentary behavior, which was this study’s purpose. Methods: A longitudinal design was employed among 18 young adult college students (Mage = 23.7 years; 88.9% female). Accelerometer-determined sedentary behavior and physical activity, along with executive function, were assessed at baseline. Approximately 8 weeks later, re-assessment of accelerometer-determined sedentary behavior and physical activity occurred. Executive function was assessed using the Parametric Go/No-Go (PGNG) computer task. From this, 2 primary executive function outcome parameters were evaluated, including the Simple Rule and Repeating Rule. Results: After adjusting for baseline sedentary behavior, age, gender, body mass index and baseline moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA), for every 25% increase in the number of correctly identified targets for the Repeating rule at the baseline assessment, participants engaged in 91.8 fewer minutes of sedentary behavior at the follow-up assessment (β = -91.8; 95% CI: -173.5, -10.0; P = 0.03). Results were unchanged when also adjusting for total baseline or follow-up physical activity. Conclusion: Greater executive function is associated with less follow-up sedentary behavior.

  4. Executive function influences sedentary behavior: A longitudinal study

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    Paul D. Loprinzi

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Background: No study has evaluated the effects of executive function on follow-up sedentary behavior, which was this study’s purpose. Methods: A longitudinal design was employed among 18 young adult college students (Mage = 23.7 years; 88.9% female. Accelerometer-determined sedentary behavior and physical activity, along with executive function, were assessed at baseline. Approximately 8 weeks later, re-assessment of accelerometer-determined sedentary behavior and physical activity occurred. Executive function was assessed using the Parametric Go/No-Go (PGNG computer task. From this, 2 primary executive function outcome parameters were evaluated, including the Simple Rule and Repeating Rule. Results: After adjusting for baseline sedentary behavior, age, gender, body mass index and baseline moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA, for every 25% increase in the number of correctly identified targets for the Repeating rule at the baseline assessment, participants engaged in 91.8 fewer minutes of sedentary behavior at the follow-up assessment (β = -91.8; 95% CI: -173.5, -10.0; P = 0.03. Results were unchanged when also adjusting for total baseline or follow-up physical activity. Conclusion: Greater executive function is associated with less follow-up sedentary behavior.

  5. Executive functioning and adaptive coping in healthy adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodríguez Villegas, Ana Lilia; Salvador Cruz, Judith

    2015-01-01

    Middle-aged individuals encounter multiple environmental demands to which they must develop efficient solutions, thus making the study of executive functions and coping strategies within this age group important. This study evaluated the relationship between the planning and flexible organization of executive function with adaptive coping strategies (ACS) in adults aged 43 to 52 years old. The study included 104 participants, including 52 men and 52 women, with no history of neurological or psychiatric illnesses, diabetes, or hypertension. The participants engaged in the Tower of London(DX) (TOL(DX)) test, the Wisconsin Card-Sorting Test (WCST), and the Coping Strategies Inventory. A relationship was observed between the percentage of errors and conceptual-level responses (WCST) and the Problem Solving ACS. In a separate analysis performed on the men, a negative relationship was discovered between the WCST and the Emotional Expression ACS. In the female group, the dimensions of the WCST and the TOL(DX) were associated with the ACS Emotional Expression and Problem-Solving subscales and the maladaptive coping strategy Social Withdrawal subscale. The relationship between executive functioning and the ACS is multidimensional, complex, and different between men and women. This study adds a neuropsychological characterization of the relationship between executive functions and ACS with ecological validity. The study confirms a relationship between the flexible organization of executive function and the Problem-Solving ACS.

  6. Executive functions in children who experience bullying situations

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    Wandersonia Medeiros

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available Bullying is characterized by intentional, repetitive, and persistent aggressive behavior that causes damage to the victim. Many studies investigate the social and emotional aspects related to bullying, but few assess the cognitive aspects it involves. Studies with aggressive individuals indicate impairment in executive functioning and decision-making. The objective of this study was to assess hot and cold executive functions in children who experience bullying. A total of 60 children between 10 and 11 years of age were included in the study. They were divided into four groups: aggressors (bullies, victims, bully-victims, and control. Tests for decision-making, inhibitory control, working memory, and cognitive flexibility were used. The bully group made more unfavorable choices on the Iowa Gambling Task (IGT, which may indicate difficulties in the decision-making process. The victim group took longer to complete the Trail Making Test (Part B than aggressors, suggesting lower cognitive flexibility in victims. The hypothesis that aggressors would have lower performance in other executive functions such as inhibitory control, working memory and cognitive flexibility has not been confirmed. This study indicates that bullies have an impairment of hot executive functions whereas victims have a comparatively lower performance in cold executive functions. In addition to social and cultural variables, neurocognitive and emotional factors seem to influence the behavior of children in bullying situations.

  7. Executive Functions in Children Who Experience Bullying Situations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Medeiros, Wandersonia; Torro-Alves, Nelson; Malloy-Diniz, Leandro F.; Minervino, Carla M.

    2016-01-01

    Bullying is characterized by intentional, repetitive, and persistent aggressive behavior that causes damage to the victim. Many studies investigate the social and emotional aspects related to bullying, but few assess the cognitive aspects it involves. Studies with aggressive individuals indicate impairment in executive functioning and decision-making. The objective of this study was to assess hot and cold executive functions in children who experience bullying. A total of 60 children between 10 and 11 years of age were included in the study. They were divided into four groups: aggressors (bullies), victims, bully-victims, and control. Tests for decision-making, inhibitory control, working memory, and cognitive flexibility were used. The bully group made more unfavorable choices on the Iowa Gambling Task, which may indicate difficulties in the decision-making process. The victim group took longer to complete the Trail Making Test (Part B) than aggressors, suggesting lower cognitive flexibility in victims. The hypothesis that aggressors would have lower performance in other executive functions such as inhibitory control, working memory, and cognitive flexibility has not been confirmed. This study indicates that bullies have an impairment of hot executive functions whereas victims have a comparatively lower performance in cold executive functions. In addition to social and cultural variables, neurocognitive and emotional factors seem to influence the behavior of children in bullying situations. PMID:27616998

  8. Executive function subcomponents and their relations to everyday functioning in healthy older adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McAlister, Courtney; Schmitter-Edgecombe, Maureen

    2016-10-01

    Everyday functioning and its executive functioning cognitive correlates (i.e., switching, inhibition, and updating) were investigated in healthy older adults (HOAs) using multiple methods of functional status. In addition to whether computerized experimental tasks would better dissociate these subcomponents than neuropsychological measures of executive functioning, we were also interested in the contributions of both experimental and neuropsychological measures of executive function subcomponents to functional abilities. Seventy HOAs (45 young-old and 25 old-old) and 70 younger adults completed executive function and neuropsychological tests. In addition to self- and informant questionnaires of functional abilities, HOAs completed two performance-based measures. An aging effect was found on all executive function measures. Old-old older adults and their informants did not report more functional difficulties but demonstrated more difficulties on performance-based measures than did young-old participants. For the HOAs, after controlling for age and education, the neuropsychological measures of executive functioning, but not experimental measures, explained a significant amount of variance in the informant-report and both performance-based measures. Updating measures differentially predicted performance-based measures, while switching was important for questionnaire and performance-based measures. The contribution of executive functioning to functional status when measured with experimental measures specifically designed to isolate the executive subcomponent was not as strong as hypothesized. Further research examining the value of isolating executive function subcomponents in neuropsychological assessment and the prediction of functional abilities in older adults is warranted.

  9. Executive Functions in Young Adults with Autism Spectrum Disorder

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brady, Danielle I.; Saklofske, Donald H.; Schwean, Vicki L.; Montgomery, Janine M.; Thorne, Keoma J.; McCrimmon, Adam W.

    2017-01-01

    Researchers have proposed that autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is characterized, at least in part, by executive function (EF) difficulties associated with the integrity of the frontal lobe. Given the paucity of research regarding EFs in young adults with high functioning ASD (HF-ASD), this research involves an examination of various indices of EF…

  10. Executive Functions in Young Adults with Autism Spectrum Disorder

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brady, Danielle I.; Saklofske, Donald H.; Schwean, Vicki L.; Montgomery, Janine M.; Thorne, Keoma J.; McCrimmon, Adam W.

    2017-01-01

    Researchers have proposed that autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is characterized, at least in part, by executive function (EF) difficulties associated with the integrity of the frontal lobe. Given the paucity of research regarding EFs in young adults with high functioning ASD (HF-ASD), this research involves an examination of various indices of EF…

  11. Hypnosis, memory, and frontal executive functioning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Farvolden, Peter; Woody, Erik Z

    2004-01-01

    According to the dissociated-control hypothesis forwarded by Woody and Bowers (1994), the effects of hypnosis are consistent with attenuated frontal lobe functioning. The present study was designed to compare the performance of participants with high and low hypnotic ability on a variety of memory tasks thought to be sensitive to frontal lobe functioning, as well as some control memory tasks not considered to be sensitive to such functioning. Results generally indicated that participants with high hypnotic ability have more difficulty with tasks sensitive to frontal lobe functioning, including free recall, proactive interference, and source amnesia tasks, both within and outside of the context of hypnosis. These differences, which were not found for nonfrontal tasks, are generally supportive of the dissociated control theory of hypnotic responding.

  12. Visual-Motor Maturity and Executive Functions in Schoolchildren

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    Ana Luisa Silva de Oliveira

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Visual-motor maturity and executive functions are closely related in the child development process. This study aimed to investigate the relation between visual-motor abilities and executive functions in 83 healthy children between 7 and 10 years old. The tools used were the Bender Gestalt Visual-Motor Test - Gradual Scoring System (B-GSS, Wisconsin Card Sorting Test (WCST, Raven's Progressive Matrices (RPM, and Rey-Osterrieth Complex Figure (ROCF. The correlation between the B-GSS and WCST scores was significantly negative (r = -.23, p < .033, while ROCF variables, such as Total Memory and Total Copy, had a moderate, significant correlation with total B-GSS score (r = -.55, p < .001; r = -.44, p < .001, respectively. The results empirically show the relation between executive functions and visual-motor maturity and are discussed in face of developmental neuropsychology.

  13. Relations between key executive functions and aggression in childhood.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Granvald, Viktor; Marciszko, Carin

    2016-01-01

    The present study examined relationships between three key executive functions (working memory, inhibition, and mental set-shifting) and multiple types of aggression in a general population sample of 9-year-old children. One hundred and forty-eight children completed a battery of executive function tasks and were rated on aggression by their primary teachers. All executive function (EF) composites were related to a composite measure of aggression. Working memory (WM) was most consistently related to the different types of aggression (overt, relational, reactive, and proactive), whereas inhibition and mental set-shifting only were related to relational and reactive aggression, respectively. Specificity in relations (studied as independent contributions) was generally low with the exception of the relation between WM and relational aggression. Taken together, our results highlight the roles of WM and relational aggression in EF-aggression relations in middle childhood.

  14. Alcohol Binge Drinking and Executive Functioning during Adolescent Brain Development

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    Soledad Gil-Hernandez

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Alcohol consumption in adolescents causes negative effects on familiar, social, academic life, as well as neurocognitive alterations. The binge drinking (BD pattern of alcohol is characterized by the alternation of episodes of heavy drinking in a short interval of time, and periods of abstinence, a practice that can result in important brain alterations; even more than regular alcohol consumption. The prefrontal cortex, which acts as neural support for the executive processes, is particularly affected by alcohol; however, not all studies are in agreement about how BD alcohol consumption affects executive functioning. Some research has found that alcohol consumption in adolescence does not significantly affect executive functioning while others found it does. It is possible that these discrepancies could be due to the history of alcohol consumption, that is, at what age the subjects started drinking. The aim of our study is to assess the performance on executive functioning tasks of 13–19-year-old adolescents according to their pattern of alcohol consumption. We hypothesize that BD adolescents will perform worse than non-BD subjects in tasks that evaluate executive functions, and these differences will increase depending on how long they have been consuming alcohol. Three hundred and twenty-two students (48.14% females; age range 13–22 years; mean aged 16.7 ± 2.59 participated in the study; all of them had begun drinking at the age of 13 years. Participant were divided into three groups, according to their age range (13–15, 16–18, and 19–22 years and divided according to their pattern of alcohol consumption (BD and control groups. Then, the subjects were evaluated with neuropsychological tasks that assess executive functions like working memory, inhibition, cognitive flexibility, or self-control among others. The entire sample showed a normal improvement in their executive performance, but this improvement was more stable and robust in

  15. Elderly with autism: Executive functions and memory

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Geurts, H.M.; Vissers, M.E.

    2012-01-01

    Cognitive autism research is mainly focusing on children and young adults even though we know that autism is a life-long disorder and that healthy aging already has a strong impact on cognitive functioning. We compared the neuropsychological profile of 23 individuals with autism and 23 healthy

  16. Elderly with Autism: Executive Functions and Memory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Geurts, Hilde M.; Vissers, Marlies E.

    2012-01-01

    Cognitive autism research is mainly focusing on children and young adults even though we know that autism is a life-long disorder and that healthy aging already has a strong impact on cognitive functioning. We compared the neuropsychological profile of 23 individuals with autism and 23 healthy controls (age range 51-83 years). Deficits were…

  17. Elderly with autism: executive functions and memory.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Geurts, H.M.; Vissers, M.E.P.

    2012-01-01

    Cognitive autism research is mainly focusing on children and young adults even though we know that autism is a life-long disorder and that healthy aging already has a strong impact on cognitive functioning. We compared the neuropsychological profile of 23 individuals with autism and 23 healthy contr

  18. Elderly with autism: Executive functions and memory

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Geurts, H.M.; Vissers, M.E.

    2012-01-01

    Cognitive autism research is mainly focusing on children and young adults even though we know that autism is a life-long disorder and that healthy aging already has a strong impact on cognitive functioning. We compared the neuropsychological profile of 23 individuals with autism and 23 healthy contr

  19. The effects of bilingualism on toddlers’ executive functioning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Poulin-Dubois, Diane; Blaye, Agnes; Coutya, Julie; Bialystok, Ellen

    2015-01-01

    Bilingual children have been shown to outperform monolingual children on tasks measuring executive functioning skills. This advantage is usually attributed to bilinguals’ extensive practice in exercising selective attention and cognitive flexibility during language use because both languages are active when one of them is being used. We examined whether this advantage is observed in 24-month-olds who have had much less experience in language production. A battery of executive functioning tasks and the cognitive scale of the Bayley test were administered to 63 monolingual and bilingual children. Native bilingual children performed significantly better than monolingual children on the Stroop task, with no difference between groups on the other tasks, confirming the specificity of bilingual effects to conflict tasks reported in older children. These results demonstrate that bilingual advantages in executive control emerge at an age not previously shown. PMID:21122877

  20. Language, bilingualism, and executive functioning in early development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morton, J Bruce

    2010-12-01

    Okanda, et al. (2010) reported new evidence concerning associations between language ability, bilingualism, and executive functioning early in development. The paper adds to a growing body of literature suggesting that bilingualism is associated with advantages in executive functioning generally, and the Dimensional Change Card Sort task in particular. However, as with all findings that hinge on between-group comparisons, there is a need to exercise caution before drawing firm conclusions about the effects of bilingualism on the development of executive control. Several lines of recent evidence are outlined that challenge key assumptions underlying the standard account of the bilingual advantage. Okanda, et al.'s findings are discussed in light of this evidence.

  1. The effects of bilingualism on toddlers' executive functioning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Poulin-Dubois, Diane; Blaye, Agnes; Coutya, Julie; Bialystok, Ellen

    2011-03-01

    Bilingual children have been shown to outperform monolingual children on tasks measuring executive functioning skills. This advantage is usually attributed to bilinguals' extensive practice in exercising selective attention and cognitive flexibility during language use because both languages are active when one of them is being used. We examined whether this advantage is observed in 24-month-olds who have had much less experience in language production. A battery of executive functioning tasks and the cognitive scale of the Bayley test were administered to 63 monolingual and bilingual children. Native bilingual children performed significantly better than monolingual children on the Stroop task, with no difference between groups on the other tasks, confirming the specificity of bilingual effects to conflict tasks reported in older children. These results demonstrate that bilingual advantages in executive control emerge at an age not previously shown.

  2. Mining dynamic noteworthy functions in software execution sequences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Bing; Huang, Guoyan; Wang, Yuqian; He, Haitao; Ren, Jiadong

    2017-01-01

    As the quality of crucial entities can directly affect that of software, their identification and protection become an important premise for effective software development, management, maintenance and testing, which thus contribute to improving the software quality and its attack-defending ability. Most analysis and evaluation on important entities like codes-based static structure analysis are on the destruction of the actual software running. In this paper, from the perspective of software execution process, we proposed an approach to mine dynamic noteworthy functions (DNFM)in software execution sequences. First, according to software decompiling and tracking stack changes, the execution traces composed of a series of function addresses were acquired. Then these traces were modeled as execution sequences and then simplified so as to get simplified sequences (SFS), followed by the extraction of patterns through pattern extraction (PE) algorithm from SFS. After that, evaluating indicators inner-importance and inter-importance were designed to measure the noteworthiness of functions in DNFM algorithm. Finally, these functions were sorted by their noteworthiness. Comparison and contrast were conducted on the experiment results from two traditional complex network-based node mining methods, namely PageRank and DegreeRank. The results show that the DNFM method can mine noteworthy functions in software effectively and precisely.

  3. Mining dynamic noteworthy functions in software execution sequences

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Guoyan; Wang, Yuqian; He, Haitao; Ren, Jiadong

    2017-01-01

    As the quality of crucial entities can directly affect that of software, their identification and protection become an important premise for effective software development, management, maintenance and testing, which thus contribute to improving the software quality and its attack-defending ability. Most analysis and evaluation on important entities like codes-based static structure analysis are on the destruction of the actual software running. In this paper, from the perspective of software execution process, we proposed an approach to mine dynamic noteworthy functions (DNFM)in software execution sequences. First, according to software decompiling and tracking stack changes, the execution traces composed of a series of function addresses were acquired. Then these traces were modeled as execution sequences and then simplified so as to get simplified sequences (SFS), followed by the extraction of patterns through pattern extraction (PE) algorithm from SFS. After that, evaluating indicators inner-importance and inter-importance were designed to measure the noteworthiness of functions in DNFM algorithm. Finally, these functions were sorted by their noteworthiness. Comparison and contrast were conducted on the experiment results from two traditional complex network-based node mining methods, namely PageRank and DegreeRank. The results show that the DNFM method can mine noteworthy functions in software effectively and precisely. PMID:28278276

  4. Executive Functions in Chronic Mesial Temporal Lobe Epilepsy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Laura Zamarian

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available There is no consensus as to whether mesial temporal lobe epilepsy (MTLE leads to executive function deficits. In this study, we adopted an extensive neuropsychological test battery and assessed different executive functions in chronic, unilateral MTLE. Performance of MTLE patients was compared with that of healthy peers and with normative data. Several MTLE patients had scores below cut-off or below the 10th percentile of normative data. Scores of the whole patient group were overall in the average range of normative data. Relative to controls, MTLE patients performed poorly in tests of working memory, cognitive flexibility, categorical verbal fluency, set-shifting, categorization, and planning. These findings raise an important methodological issue as they suggest that executive function deficits in chronic MTLE may be individually variable and that their assessment should include different tests. Deficits in chronic MTLE are not limited to temporal lobe functions, such as memory, but may extend to extra temporal cognitive domains, such as executive functions.

  5. Executive Function Is Selectively Impaired in Old Age Bipolar Depression

    Science.gov (United States)

    Caixeta, Leonardo; Soares, Vânia L. D.; Vieira, Renata T.; Soares, Cândida D.; Caixeta, Victor; Ferreira, Sandra B.; Aversi-Ferreira, Tales A.

    2017-01-01

    Background: Little is known about the cognitive signature of bipolar disorder (BD) in elderly brains. The neuropsychological features of depressive elderly with early-onset BD are largely unknown. This issue is relevant because cognitive impairment can produce an additional impact on the already compromised functionality of elderly with BD. The aim of this study is to assess executive functions (EFs) in the depressive phase of elderly outpatients with early-onset BD. Methods: Forty-nine elderly outpatients with early-onset BD were assessed with several neuropsychological tests for EF in the depressive phase of the disorder. Results: Executive dysfunction is very common in old age bipolar depression. Thirteen patients (26.5%) had a pseudodementia presentation. The worst performances were observed in the following tests: Trail Making B, Stroop Test 3, Backward Digit Span and Wisconsin Card Sorting Test. Conclusion: Executive dysfunction profile in elderly BD is complex and heterogeneous, but most cases display difficulties in working memory, inhibitory control, mental flexibility, and information processing speed. The performance of elderly with bipolar depression in executive assessment can be divided into two main categories: (1) Single EF domain impairment; and (2) Multiple EF domain impairment with or without a pseudodementia syndrome. Executive dysfunction in old age bipolar depression may be explained by lack of sufficient mental energy to run those cognitive processes that require larger amounts of effort to be performed.

  6. Executive function abnormalities in pathological gamblers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mungai Francesco

    2008-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Pathological gambling (PG is an impulse control disorder characterized by persistent and maladaptive gambling behaviors with disruptive consequences for familial, occupational and social functions. The pathophysiology of PG is still unclear, but it is hypothesized that it might include environmental factors coupled with a genetic vulnerability and dysfunctions of different neurotransmitters and selected brain areas. Our study aimed to evaluate a group of patients suffering from PG by means of some neuropsychological tests in order to explore the brain areas related to the disorder. Methods Twenty outpatients (15 men, 5 women, with a diagnosis of PG according to DSM-IV criteria, were included in the study and evaluated with a battery of neuropsychological tests: the Wisconsin Card Sorting Test (WCST, the Wechsler Memory Scale revised (WMS-R and the Verbal Associative Fluency Test (FAS. The results obtained in the patients were compared with normative values of matched healthy control subjects. Results The PG patients showed alterations at the WCST only, in particular they had a great difficulty in finding alternative methods of problem-solving and showed a decrease, rather than an increase, in efficiency, as they progressed through the consecutive phases of the test. The mean scores of the other tests were within the normal range. Conclusion Our findings showed that patients affected by PG, in spite of normal intellectual, linguistic and visual-spatial abilities, had abnormalities emerging from the WCST, in particular they could not learn from their mistakes and look for alternative solutions. Our results would seem to confirm an altered functioning of the prefrontal areas which might provoke a sort of cognitive "rigidity" that might predispose to the development of impulsive and/or compulsive behaviors, such as those typical of PG.

  7. Maturation of Executive Functioning Skills in Early Sequential Bilingualism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kalashnikova, Marina; Mattock, Karen

    2014-01-01

    Previous research has demonstrated that being bilingual from birth is advantageous for the development of skills of social cognition, executive functioning, and metalinguistic awareness due to bilingual children's extensive experience of processing and manipulating two linguistic systems. The present study investigated whether these cognitive…

  8. Executive Functioning in Adult ADHD: A Meta-Analytic Review

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    A.M. Boonstra (Marije); J. Oosterlaan (Jaap); J.A. Sergeant (Joseph); J.K. Buitelaar (Jan)

    2005-01-01

    textabstractBackground: Several theoretical explanations of ADHD in children have focused on executive functioning as the main explanatory neuropsychological domain for the disorder. In order to establish if these theoretical accounts are supported by research data for adults with ADHD, we compared

  9. Executive Functioning in Children with Specific Language Impairment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Henry, Lucy A.; Messer, David J.; Nash, Gilly

    2012-01-01

    Background: A limited range of evidence suggests that children with specific language impairment (SLI) have difficulties with higher order thinking and reasoning skills (executive functioning, EF). This study involved a comprehensive investigation of EF in this population taking into account the contributions of age, nonverbal IQ and verbal…

  10. Executive functioning in adult ADHD: a meta-analytic review.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Boonstra, A.M.; Oosterlaan, J.; Sergeant, J.A.; Buitelaar, J.K.

    2005-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Several theoretical explanations of ADHD in children have focused on executive functioning as the main explanatory neuropsychological domain for the disorder. In order to establish if these theoretical accounts are supported by research data for adults with ADHD, we compared neuropsychol

  11. Language and executive functioning in children with ADHD

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Parigger, E.M.

    2012-01-01

    This study examines language abilities of children with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and compares these abilities to those of children with specific language impairment (SLI) and typically developing children. Executive functioning, an umbrella term for various higher order cognit

  12. Parenting, corpus callosum, and executive function in preschool children.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kok, Rianne; Lucassen, Nicole; Bakermans-Kranenburg, Marian J; van IJzendoorn, Marinus H; Ghassabian, Akhgar; Roza, Sabine J; Govaert, Paul; Jaddoe, Vincent W; Hofman, Albert; Verhulst, Frank C; Tiemeier, Henning

    2014-01-01

    In this longitudinal population-based study (N = 544), we investigated whether early parenting and corpus callosum length predict child executive function abilities at 4 years of age. The length of the corpus callosum in infancy was measured using postnatal cranial ultrasounds at 6 weeks of age. At 3 years, two aspects of parenting were observed: maternal sensitivity during a teaching task and maternal discipline style during a discipline task. Parents rated executive function problems at 4 years of age in five domains of inhibition, shifting, emotional control, working memory, and planning/organizing, using the Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function-Preschool Version. Maternal sensitivity predicted less executive function problems at preschool age. A significant interaction was found between corpus callosum length in infancy and maternal use of positive discipline to determine child inhibition problems: The association between a relatively shorter corpus callosum in infancy and child inhibition problems was reduced in children who experienced more positive discipline. Our results point to the buffering potential of positive parenting for children with biological vulnerability.

  13. Theory of Mind and Executive Function in Chinese Preschool Children

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duh, Shinchieh; Paik, Jae H.; Miller, Patricia H.; Gluck, Stephanie C.; Li, Hui; Himelfarb, Igor

    2016-01-01

    Cross-cultural research on children's theory of mind (ToM) understanding has raised questions about its developmental sequence and relationship with executive function (EF). The current study examined how ToM develops (using the tasks from Wellman & Liu, 2004) in relation to 2 EF skills (conflict inhibition, working memory) in 997 Chinese…

  14. The Effects of Bilingualism on Toddlers' Executive Functioning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Poulin-Dubois, Diane; Blaye, Agnes; Coutya, Julie; Bialystok, Ellen

    2011-01-01

    Bilingual children have been shown to outperform monolingual children on tasks measuring executive functioning skills. This advantage is usually attributed to bilinguals' extensive practice in exercising selective attention and cognitive flexibility during language use because both languages are active when one of them is being used. We examined…

  15. Associations among False Belief Understanding, Counterfactual Reasoning, and Executive Function

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guajardo, Nicole R.; Parker, Jessica; Turley-Ames, Kandi

    2009-01-01

    The primary purposes of the present study were to clarify previous work on the association between counterfactual thinking and false belief performance to determine (1) whether these two variables are related and (2) if so, whether executive function skills mediate the relationship. A total of 92 3-, 4-, and 5-year-olds completed false belief,…

  16. Links between executive functions and early literacy and numeracy

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Davidse, Neeltje Joanne

    2014-01-01

    The current study extended research on working memory, attention shifting, and inhibitory control problems –indicated as executive functions (EF) – that may play a role in acquiring early literacy and numeracy skills. Four research questions were targeted: 1. Do EF skills interfere with benefiting

  17. Executive Function Deficits in Preschool Children with ADHD and DBD

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schoemaker, Kim; Bunte, Tessa; Wiebe, Sandra A.; Espy, Kimberly Andrews; Dekovic, Maja; Matthys, Walter

    2012-01-01

    Background: Impairments in executive functions (EF) are consistently associated with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and to a lesser extent, with disruptive behavior disorder (DBD), that is, oppositional defiant disorder or conduct disorder, in school-aged children. Recently, larger numbers of children with these disorders are…

  18. Executive function training in children with SLI: A pilot study

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vugs, B.A.M.; Knoors, H.E.T.; Cuperus, J.M.; Hendriks, M.P.H.; Verhoeven, L.T.W.

    2017-01-01

    The aim of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness of a computer-based executive function (EF) training in children with specific language impairment (SLI). Ten children with SLI, ages 8 to 12 years, completed a 25-session training of visuospatial working memory, inhibition and cognitive

  19. Teacher Stress Predicts Child Executive Function: Moderation by School Poverty

    Science.gov (United States)

    Neuenschwander, Regula; Friedman-Krauss, Allison; Raver, Cybele; Blair, Clancy

    2017-01-01

    Research Findings: Recent research has explored relations between classroom quality and child executive function (EF), but little is known about how teachers' well-being, including stress, relates to child EF--a crucial component of self-regulation. We hypothesized that teacher stress is negatively or curvilinearly related to child EF and…

  20. Executive functioning in boys with ADHD: primarily an inhibition deficit?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Scheres, A.P.J.; Oosterlaan, J.; Geurts, H.M.; Morein-Zamir, S.; Meiran, N.; Vlasveld, L.; Sergeant, J.A.

    2004-01-01

    This study was aimed at: (1) testing whether boys with Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) demonstrate a deficit in response inhibition and deficits in other executive functions (EF), or alternatively, demonstrate a deficit in only response inhibition; (2) investigating which role associ

  1. Executive Function Impairments in High IQ Adults with ADHD

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brown, Thomas E.; Reichel, Philipp C.; Quinlan, Donald M.

    2009-01-01

    Objectives: To demonstrate that high IQ adults diagnosed with ADHD suffer from executive function (EF) impairments that: a) can be identified with a combination of standardized measures and self-report data; and b) occur more commonly in this group than in the general population. Method: 157 ADHD adults with IQ greater than or equal to 120 were…

  2. The Relation between Television Exposure and Executive Function among Preschoolers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nathanson, Amy I.; Aladé, Fashina; Sharp, Molly L.; Rasmussen, Eric E.; Christy, Katheryn

    2014-01-01

    This study investigated the relations between television exposure during the preschool years and the development of executive function (EF). Data were gathered from 107 parents of preschoolers who provided information on children's television viewing, background television exposure, exposure to specific televised content, and the age at which…

  3. Theory of Mind and Executive Function in Chinese Preschool Children

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duh, Shinchieh; Paik, Jae H.; Miller, Patricia H.; Gluck, Stephanie C.; Li, Hui; Himelfarb, Igor

    2016-01-01

    Cross-cultural research on children's theory of mind (ToM) understanding has raised questions about its developmental sequence and relationship with executive function (EF). The current study examined how ToM develops (using the tasks from Wellman & Liu, 2004) in relation to 2 EF skills (conflict inhibition, working memory) in 997 Chinese…

  4. Fluid intelligence and executive functioning more alike than different?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Aken, L. van; Kessels, R.P.C.; Wingbermühle, P.A.M.; Veld, W.M. van der; Egger, J.I.M.

    2016-01-01

    Objective Fluid intelligence (Gf) has been related to executive functioning (EF) in previous studies, and it is also known to be correlated with crystallized intelligence (Gc). The present study includes representative measures of Gf, Gc, and EF frequently used in clinical practice to examine this G

  5. Supporting Executive Functions during Children's Preliteracy Learning with the Computer

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van de Sande, E.; Segers, E.; Verhoeven, L.

    2016-01-01

    The present study examined how embedded activities to support executive functions helped children to benefit from a computer intervention that targeted preliteracy skills. Three intervention groups were compared on their preliteracy gains in a randomized controlled trial design: an experimental group that worked with software to stimulate early…

  6. Executive function behaviours in children with specific language impairment (SLI)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Cuperus, J.M.; Vugs, B.A.M.; Scheper, A.R.; Hendriks, M.P.H.

    2014-01-01

    Background: There is growing evidence that linguistic and non-linguistic factors may contribute to the problems associated with specific language impairment (SLI). One factor that has been implicated is executive functioning (EF). Most studies investigating EF in children with SLI use performance ba

  7. Overcoming Executive Function Deficits with Students with ADHD

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Joseph; Reid, Robert

    2011-01-01

    Academic problems are common among students with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). One reason for academic problems is the difficulties in executive functions (EF) that are necessary for complex goal-oriented behaviors. Students with ADHD often exhibit EF deficits and as a result have difficulties with tasks that require planning,…

  8. How storage and executive functions contribute to children's reading comprehension

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Nouwens, S.; Groen, M.A.; Verhoeven, L.T.W.

    2016-01-01

    In the current study we investigated the contribution of storage and separate measures of executive functions to reading comprehension in Dutch 5th graders, while controlling for word recognition and vocabulary. In addition we investigated the relationship between this model and working memory as as

  9. Executive functions predict the success of top-soccer players.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vestberg, Torbjörn; Gustafson, Roland; Maurex, Liselotte; Ingvar, Martin; Petrovic, Predrag

    2012-01-01

    While the importance of physical abilities and motor coordination is non-contested in sport, more focus has recently been turned toward cognitive processes important for different sports. However, this line of studies has often investigated sport-specific cognitive traits, while few studies have focused on general cognitive traits. We explored if measures of general executive functions can predict the success of a soccer player. The present study used standardized neuropsychological assessment tools assessing players' general executive functions including on-line multi-processing such as creativity, response inhibition, and cognitive flexibility. In a first cross-sectional part of the study we compared the results between High Division players (HD), Lower Division players (LD) and a standardized norm group. The result shows that both HD and LD players had significantly better measures of executive functions in comparison to the norm group for both men and women. Moreover, the HD players outperformed the LD players in these tests. In the second prospective part of the study, a partial correlation test showed a significant correlation between the result from the executive test and the numbers of goals and assists the players had scored two seasons later. The results from this study strongly suggest that results in cognitive function tests predict the success of ball sport players.

  10. Executive Function Training in Children with SLI: A Pilot Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vugs, Brigitte; Knoors, Harry; Cuperus, Juliane; Hendriks, Marc; Verhoeven, Ludo

    2017-01-01

    The aim of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness of a computer-based executive function (EF) training in children with specific language impairment (SLI). Ten children with SLI, ages 8 to 12 years, completed a 25-session training of visuospatial working memory, inhibition and cognitive flexibility over a 6-week period. Treatment outcome was…

  11. Executive functions predict the success of top-soccer players.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Torbjörn Vestberg

    Full Text Available While the importance of physical abilities and motor coordination is non-contested in sport, more focus has recently been turned toward cognitive processes important for different sports. However, this line of studies has often investigated sport-specific cognitive traits, while few studies have focused on general cognitive traits. We explored if measures of general executive functions can predict the success of a soccer player. The present study used standardized neuropsychological assessment tools assessing players' general executive functions including on-line multi-processing such as creativity, response inhibition, and cognitive flexibility. In a first cross-sectional part of the study we compared the results between High Division players (HD, Lower Division players (LD and a standardized norm group. The result shows that both HD and LD players had significantly better measures of executive functions in comparison to the norm group for both men and women. Moreover, the HD players outperformed the LD players in these tests. In the second prospective part of the study, a partial correlation test showed a significant correlation between the result from the executive test and the numbers of goals and assists the players had scored two seasons later. The results from this study strongly suggest that results in cognitive function tests predict the success of ball sport players.

  12. A Qualitative Case Study: Teacher Perceptions of Executive Function

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reed, Stacey L. E.

    2016-01-01

    Executive function (EF) is becoming a more widely used term to explain student behaviors, yet research on EF in education is limited. This qualitative study addressed a gap in literature by examining teacher perceptions of students with EF deficits, as well as teacher preparedness and desire to learn more about EF. Perceptions of third grade,…

  13. Quadriceps Strength and Executive Functions in Older Women

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Scherder, E. J. A.; Eggermont, L. H. P.; Geuze, R. H.; Vis, J.; Verkerke, G. J.

    2010-01-01

    Objective: The aim of this study is to answer the question whether the strength of the knee extensor musculus quadriceps (m. quadriceps), in particular, is related to specific executive functions and whether this relationship is independent of aerobic fitness. The clinical relevance of this question

  14. Critical Thinking, Executive Functions and Their Potential Relationship

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lizarraga, Maria Luisa Sanz de Acedo; Baquedano, Maria Teresa Sanz de Acedo; Villanueva, Oscar Ardaiz

    2012-01-01

    The central issue of this paper is to review the possible relationships between the constructs of critical thinking and executive functions. To do this, we first analyse the essential components of critical thinking from a psychological and neurological point of view. Second, we examine the scope of the cognitive and neurological nature of…

  15. Executive Functions Contribute Uniquely to Reading Competence in Minority Youth

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jacobson, Lisa A.; Koriakin, Taylor; Lipkin, Paul; Boada, Richard; Frijters, Jan C.; Lovett, Maureen W.; Hill, Dina; Willcutt, Erik; Gottwald, Stephanie; Wolf, Maryanne; Bosson-Heenan, Joan; Gruen, Jeffrey R.; Mahone, E. Mark

    2017-01-01

    Competent reading requires various skills beyond those for basic word reading (i.e., core language skills, rapid naming, phonological processing). Contributing "higher-level" or domain-general processes include information processing speed and executive functions (working memory, strategic problem solving, attentional switching).…

  16. Social Maturity and Executive Function among Deaf Learners

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marschark, Marc; Kronenberger, William G.; Rosica, Mark; Borgna, Georgianna; Convertino, Carol; Durkin, Andreana; Machmer, Elizabeth; Schmitz, Kathryn L.

    2017-01-01

    Two experiments examined relations among social maturity, executive function, language, and cochlear implant (CI) use among deaf high school and college students. Experiment 1 revealed no differences between deaf CI users, deaf nonusers, and hearing college students in measures of social maturity. However, deaf students (both CI users and…

  17. Executive Functions: Insights into Ways to Help More Children Thrive

    Science.gov (United States)

    Diamond, Adele

    2014-01-01

    Executive functions enable children to pay attention, follow instructions, apply what they have learned, have those "aha!" moments in which they grasp how multiple facts interrelate, think of creative solutions, obey social norms such as waiting their turn and not butting in line or jumping out of their seat, mentally construct a plan,…

  18. Intellectual Ability and Executive Function in Pediatric Moyamoya Vasculopathy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Williams, Tricia S.; Westmacott, Robyn; Dlamini, Nomazulu; Granite, Leeor; Dirks, Peter; Askalan, Rand; MacGregor, Daune; Moharir, Mahendranath; Deveber, Gabrielle

    2012-01-01

    Aim: Moyamoya vasculopathy is characterized by progressive stenosis of the major arteries of the Circle of Willis, resulting in compromised cerebral blood flow and increased risk of stroke. The objectives of the current study were to examine intellectual and executive functioning of children with moyamoya and to evaluate the impact of moyamoya…

  19. Executive Function and the Development of Belief-Desire Psychology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rakoczy, Hannes

    2010-01-01

    In two studies children's performance on tasks requiring the ascription of beliefs and desires was investigated in relation to their executive function. Study 1 (n = 80) showed that 3- and 4-year-olds were more proficient at ascribing subjective, mutually incompatible desires and desire-dependent emotions to two persons than they were at ascribing…

  20. Executive Function: Implications for Education. NCER 2017-2000

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zelazo, Philip David; Blair, Clancy B.; Willoughby, Michael T.

    2016-01-01

    Executive function (EF) skills are the attention-regulation skills that make it possible to sustain attention, keep goals and information in mind, refrain from responding immediately, resist distraction, tolerate frustration, consider the consequences of different behaviors, reflect on past experiences, and plan for the future. As EF research…

  1. Neuropsychological heterogeneity in executive functioning in autism spectrum disorders

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Geurts, H.; Sinzig, J.; Booth, R.; Happé, F.

    2014-01-01

    In most research it is common to report results on a group level. For example, various studies report that children and adults with autism show executive function deficits. However, studies often differ in the pattern of findings. We believe this might be partly due to the heterogeneity of the autis

  2. Intellectual Ability and Executive Function in Pediatric Moyamoya Vasculopathy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Williams, Tricia S.; Westmacott, Robyn; Dlamini, Nomazulu; Granite, Leeor; Dirks, Peter; Askalan, Rand; MacGregor, Daune; Moharir, Mahendranath; Deveber, Gabrielle

    2012-01-01

    Aim: Moyamoya vasculopathy is characterized by progressive stenosis of the major arteries of the Circle of Willis, resulting in compromised cerebral blood flow and increased risk of stroke. The objectives of the current study were to examine intellectual and executive functioning of children with moyamoya and to evaluate the impact of moyamoya…

  3. How Executive Functions Are Related to Intelligence in Williams Syndrome

    Science.gov (United States)

    Osorio, Ana; Cruz, Raquel; Sampaio, Adriana; Garayzabal, Elena; Martinez-Regueiro, Rocio; Goncalves, Oscar F.; Carracedo, Angel; Fernandez-Prieto, Montse

    2012-01-01

    Williams syndrome is characterized by impairments in executive functions (EFs). However, it remains unknown how distinct types of EFs relate to intelligence in this syndrome. The present study analyzed performance on working memory, inhibiting and shifting, and its links to IQ in a sample of 17 individuals with WS, and compared them with a group…

  4. Physically active academic lessons : Effects on physical fitness and executive functions in primary school children

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    de Greeff, Johannes Wilhelmus

    2016-01-01

    There is increasing evidence that physical activity can improve cognitive functions of primary school children, especially the executive functions (functions that are important for goal directed cognition and behavior). Physically active academic lessons, however, do not improve executive functions

  5. Informing the Structure of Executive Function in Children: A Meta-Analysis of Functional Neuroimaging Data.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McKenna, Róisín; Rushe, T; Woodcock, Kate A

    2017-01-01

    The structure of executive function (EF) has been the focus of much debate for decades. What is more, the complexity and diversity provided by the developmental period only adds to this contention. The development of executive function plays an integral part in the expression of children's behavioral, cognitive, social, and emotional capabilities. Understanding how these processes are constructed during development allows for effective measurement of EF in this population. This meta-analysis aims to contribute to a better understanding of the structure of executive function in children. A coordinate-based meta-analysis was conducted (using BrainMap GingerALE 2.3), which incorporated studies administering functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) during inhibition, switching, and working memory updating tasks in typical children (aged 6-18 years). The neural activation common across all executive tasks was compared to that shared by tasks pertaining only to inhibition, switching or updating, which are commonly considered to be fundamental executive processes. Results support the existence of partially separable but partially overlapping inhibition, switching, and updating executive processes at a neural level, in children over 6 years. Further, the shared neural activation across all tasks (associated with a proposed "unitary" component of executive function) overlapped to different degrees with the activation associated with each individual executive process. These findings provide evidence to support the suggestion that one of the most influential structural models of executive functioning in adults can also be applied to children of this age. However, the findings also call for careful consideration and measurement of both specific executive processes, and unitary executive function in this population. Furthermore, a need is highlighted for a new systematic developmental model, which captures the integrative nature of executive function in children.

  6. Executive Function Improvement in Normal Pressure Hydrocephalus Following Shunt Surgery

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ezequiel Gleichgerrcht

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available The aim of this investigation was to evaluate improvement of executive functions after shunt surgery in patients with early normal pressure hydrocephalus (NPH. Patients with NPH were assessed before and after shunt surgery with tests shown to be sensitive to damage to the prefrontal cortex (PFC. Significant differences were found between basal and follow-up performances on the Boston Naming Test, the backwards digits span, Part B of the Trail Making Test, and the number of words produced on the phonological fluency task. In conclusion, our study reveals that patients with NPH who respond positively to continuous slow lumbar cerebral spinal fluid drainage and receive a ventriculoperitoneal shunt implant, improve their performance on tasks of executive function. Due to the high demand for this form of mental processing in real-life complex scenarios, and based on the severe executive deficits present in both demented and non-demented NPH patients, we encourage the assessment of executive functions in this clinical group.

  7. [Executive function deficits in ADHD and Asperger syndrome].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paloscia, Claudio; Baglioni, Valentina; Alessandrelli, Riccardo; Rosa, Caterina; Guerini, Rossella; Aceti, Franca; Pasini, Augusto

    2013-01-01

    The aim of this study is to evaluate the executive functioning of children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder combined subtype (ADHD-C) and Asperger syndrome (AS) compared to a control group. A sample of 79 children (28 ADHD-C; 24 AS; 27 subjects with typical development) was tested on a wide range of tasks related to major domains of executive functioning: inhibition response (prepotent and interference), visual working memory, planning and cognitive flexibility. Patients with AS showed deficits on visual working memory and cognitive flexibility. ADHD-C children were impaired on inhibition control (prepotent response) but also showed deficits on working memory and cognitive flexibility. The only executive functioning measure that differentiated ADHD from AS was inhibition of prepotent response and a more high deficit in cognitive flexibility and working memory in AS compared to ADHD-C. This study confirms recent evidence about the identification of specific executive profiles in these disorders. Other studies are warranted to evaluate the presence and specifity of a dysexecutive syndrome in ADHD and AS in a larger sample with girls.

  8. Brain structure, executive function and appetitive traits in adolescent obesity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Groot, C J; van den Akker, E L T; Rings, E H H M; Delemarre-van de Waal, H A; van der Grond, J

    2017-08-01

    Children with obesity show differences in brain structure, executive function and appetitive traits when compared with lean peers. Little is known on the relationship between brain structure and these traits. To investigate the relationship between differences in brain structure and executive function and appetitive traits, in obese and lean adolescents. MRI was used to measure cortical thickness and subcortical volumes. Executive function was measured by a Stop Signal-and a Choice Delay Task. Appetitive traits were measured using the Child Eating Behaviour Questionnaire. Adolescents with obesity had greater volumes of the pallidum; 1.78 mL (SE 0.03, p=0.014), when compared with controls; 1.65 mL (SE 0.02). In the group with obesity, greater pallidum volume was positively associated with the ability to delay reward in the Choice Delay Task (p=0.012). The association between pallidum volumes and Choice Delay Task in obese adolescents supports the hypothesis that the pallidum plays an important role in executive dysfunction in obese children. © 2016 World Obesity Federation.

  9. Executive Function and Diabetes Mellitus - A Stone Left Unturned?

    LENUS (Irish Health Repository)

    2012-01-31

    Diabetes mellitus (DM) is a chronic medical condition that is dependent upon patients self-caring and managing their condition to achieve optimal control. Adherence to medical therapy, making decisions related to lifestyle changes, and self-treating hypoglycaemia for example, require planning and organisational skills that are under the control of a specific domain of cognitive function known as executive function. Executive function has been shown by functional imaging studies such as magnetic resonance imaging to be under the influence of the frontal and prefrontal cortical system. It is now recognised that even in subjects with apparently normal cognition, DM may be associated with impaired executive function (IEF). The exact cause of IEF in DM is still not fully understood. However cerebral microvascular disease and chronic dysglycaemia have been postulated as possible factors contributing to functional neuronal dysfunction leading to IEF. IEF may adversely affect patients\\' abilities to self-manage their diabetes care, potentially cause worsening glycaemic control and difficulty managing risk factors. Several bedside assessment tools to screen for IEF are currently available and have been shown to correlate with functional status. However, more studies are needed to validate these tests against diabetes self-care assessment tools. Until then, clinicians and healthcare workers managing patients with DM should be aware of the potential for IEF in their patients as specific behaviour and education intervention may be needed to help manage patients with diabetes and IEF.

  10. Executive function and diabetes mellitus--a stone left unturned?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thabit, Hood; Kyaw Tun, Tommy; McDermott, John; Sreenan, Seamus

    2012-03-01

    Diabetes mellitus (DM) is a chronic medical condition that is dependent upon patients self-caring and managing their condition to achieve optimal control. Adherence to medical therapy, making decisions related to lifestyle changes, and self-treating hypoglycaemia for example, require planning and organisational skills that are under the control of a specific domain of cognitive function known as executive function. Executive function has been shown by functional imaging studies such as magnetic resonance imaging to be under the influence of the frontal and prefrontal cortical system. It is now recognised that even in subjects with apparently normal cognition, DM may be associated with impaired executive function (IEF). The exact cause of IEF in DM is still not fully understood. However cerebral microvascular disease and chronic dysglycaemia have been postulated as possible factors contributing to functional neuronal dysfunction leading to IEF. IEF may adversely affect patients' abilities to self-manage their diabetes care, potentially cause worsening glycaemic control and difficulty managing risk factors. Several bedside assessment tools to screen for IEF are currently available and have been shown to correlate with functional status. However, more studies are needed to validate these tests against diabetes self-care assessment tools. Until then, clinicians and healthcare workers managing patients with DM should be aware of the potential for IEF in their patients as specific behaviour and education intervention may be needed to help manage patients with diabetes and IEF.

  11. Modulation of Higher-Order Olfaction Components on Executive Functions in Humans.

    OpenAIRE

    Fagundo, Ana B.; Jiménez Murcia, Susana; Giner Bartolomé, Cristina; Anisul Islam, Mohammed; Torre Fornell, Rafael de la; Pastor, Antonio; Casanueva, Felipe F.; Crujeiras, Ana B.; Granero, Roser; Baños, Rosa; Botella, Cristina; Fernández Real, Jose M.; Frühbeck, Gema; Gómez Ambrosi, Javier; Menchón, José M.

    2015-01-01

    The prefrontal (PFC) and orbitofrontal cortex (OFC) appear to be associated with both executive functions and olfaction. However, there is little data relating olfactory processing and executive functions in humans. The present study aimed at exploring the role of olfaction on executive functioning, making a distinction between primary and more cognitive aspects of olfaction. Three executive tasks of similar difficulty were used. One was used to assess hot executive functions (Iowa Gambling T...

  12. Impact of IQ Discrepancy on Executive Function in High-Functioning Autism: Insight into Twice Exceptionality

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kalbfleisch, M. Layne; Loughan, Ashlee R.

    2012-01-01

    We examined the impact of IQ discrepancy (IQD) within (1) and above (1+) one standard deviation on executive function in HFA using the BRIEF. We hypothesized that IQD would benefit executive function. IQD 1 is hallmarked by deficits in BRIEF indices and subscales inhibit, shift, initiate, working memory, planning and organization, and monitor…

  13. Executive functioning and lateralized semantic priming in older adults

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Emily J. Helder

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Normal aging is associated with a number of cognitive deficits, including changes in executive functioning. Cabeza (Cabeza, 2002 proposed that hemispheric asymmetry during certain tasks becomes less pronounced in the elderly, reflected in greater bilateral patterns of cortical activation among older adults. Forty-two younger adults and 35 older adults were administered a battery of neuropsychological tests sensitive to frontal functioning. In addition, they completed a lexical decision task to assess lateralized implicit priming at two Stimulus Onset Asynchronies (SOAs (50 ms and 750 ms. Results of accuracy and reaction time data support Cabeza’s model of reduced asymmetry in older adults completing a semantic priming task. Analysis of the contribution of executive functioning revealed its importance in semantic memory processing.

  14. On the impacts of working memory training on executive functioning

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tiina eSalminen

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Recent studies have reported improvements in a variety of cognitive functions following sole working memory (WM training. In spite of the emergence of several successful training paradigms, the scope of transfer effects has remained mixed. This is most likely due to the heterogeneity of cognitive functions that have been measured and tasks that have been applied. In the present study, we approached this issue systematically by investigating transfer effects from WM training to different aspects of executive functioning. Our training task was a demanding WM task that requires simultaneous performance of a visual and an auditory n-back task, while the transfer tasks tapped WM updating, coordination of the performance of multiple simultaneous tasks (i.e., dual-tasks and sequential tasks (i.e., task switching, and the temporal distribution of attentional processing. Additionally, we examined whether WM training improves reasoning abilities; a hypothesis that has so far gained mixed support. Following training, participants showed improvements in the trained task as well as in the transfer WM updating task. As for the other executive functions, trained participants improved in a task switching situation and in attentional processing. There was no transfer to the dual-task situation or to reasoning skills. These results therefore confirm previous findings that WM can be trained, and additionally, they show that the training effects can generalize to various other tasks tapping on executive functions.

  15. Does the Iowa Gambling Task Measure Executive Function?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gansler, David A.; Jerram, Matthew W.; Vannorsdall, Tracy D.; Schretlen, David J.

    2011-01-01

    The Iowa Gambling Task (IGT) is assumed to measure executive functioning, but this has not been empirically tested by means of both convergent and discriminant validity. We used structural equation modeling (SEM) to test whether the IGT is an executive function (EF) task (convergent validity) and whether it is not related to other neuropsychological domains (discriminant validity). Healthy community-dwelling participants (N = 214) completed a comprehensive neuropsychological battery. We analyzed the conventional IGT metric and three alternative metrics based on the overall difference of advantageous minus disadvantageous choices made during the last 60 IGT responses and advantageous minus disadvantageous choices based on two specific decks of cards (D minus A). An a priori six-factor hierarchical model of neuropsychological functioning was confirmed with SEM. Attention and processing speed were grouped as “non-associative” factors. Fluency, executive functioning, visual learning/memory, and verbal learning/memory were grouped as higher-level “associative” factors. Of the non-associative factors, attention, but not speed, predicted IGT performance. When each associative factor was entered along with attention, only EF improved the model fit and that was only for metrics based on trials 41–100. SEM indicates metrics based on trails 1–100 are influenced by attention, and metrics based on trails 41–100 are influenced by attention and EF. Its associative strength with attention is twice that of EF. Conceptually, the IGT is a multi-trait task involving novel problem-solving and attentional domains to a greater extent, and executive functioning to a lesser extent. PMID:22015855

  16. Texting while driving, executive function, and impulsivity in college students.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hayashi, Yusuke; Rivera, Esteban A; Modico, James G; Foreman, Anne M; Wirth, Oliver

    2017-05-01

    The purpose of the present study was to investigate the cognitive processes underlying texting while driving. A sample of 120 college students completed a survey to assess how frequently they send and read a text message while driving. Based on this information, students were assigned to one of two groups: 20 students who frequently text while driving and 20 matched-control students who infrequently text while driving but were similar in gender, age, years of education, and years driving. The groups were compared on the extent to which they differed in self-reported measures of executive function and impulsivity. The groups were also compared on a behavioral measure of impulsivity: the extent to which they discounted hypothetical monetary rewards as a function of the delay. For this measure, the students made repeated choices between smaller monetary rewards available immediately and larger rewards available after delays ranging from 1 week to 6 months. The results show that the group of students who frequently text while driving showed (a) significantly lower levels of executive function and (b) higher levels of self-reported impulsivity, although the groups did not differ significantly on the behavioral measure of impulsivity. These results support a general conclusion that drivers with lower levels of executive function and higher levels of impulsivity are more likely to text while driving. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. Aging of the Planning Process: The Role of Executive Functioning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sorel, Olivier; Pennequin, Valerie

    2008-01-01

    This study tested whether the aging of executive functioning is linked to the decline in planning performance. Participants were divided into three groups: group 1 composed of 15 adults with a mean age of 22.7 years, group 2 composed of 15 adults with a mean age of 68.1 years and group 3 composed of 16 adults with a mean age of 78.75 years. Each…

  18. Executive Function and Food Approach Behavior in Middle Childhood

    OpenAIRE

    Karoline eGroppe; Birgit eElsner

    2014-01-01

    Executive function (EF) has long been considered to be a unitary, domain-general cognitive ability. However, recent research suggests differentiating ‘hot’ affective and ‘cool’ cognitive aspects of EF. Yet, findings regarding this two-factor construct are still inconsistent. In particular, the development of this factor structure remains unclear and data on school-aged children is lacking. Furthermore, studies linking EF and overweight or obesity suggest that EF contributes to the regulation ...

  19. A Longitudinal Intergenerational Analysis of Executive Functions During Early Childhood

    OpenAIRE

    Cuevas, Kimberly; Deater-Deckard, Kirby; Kim-Spoon, Jungmeen; Wang, Zhe; Morasch, Katherine C.; Bell, Martha Ann

    2013-01-01

    Despite the importance of executive function (EF) in both clinical and educational contexts, the etiology of individual differences in early childhood EF remains poorly understood. This study provides the first longitudinal intergenerational analysis of mother-child EF associations during early childhood. A group of children and their mothers (n = 62) completed age-appropriate EF tasks. Mother and child EF were modestly correlated by 24 months of age and this association was stable through 48...

  20. Heterogeneity of executive functions among comorbid neurodevelopmental disorders

    OpenAIRE

    Dina R. Dajani; Llabre, Maria M.; Mary Beth Nebel; Mostofsky, Stewart H.; Uddin, Lucina Q.

    2016-01-01

    Executive functions (EFs) are used to set goals, plan for the future, inhibit maladaptive responses, and change behavior flexibly. Although some studies point to specific EF profiles in autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) — prevalent and often highly comorbid neurodevelopmental disorders — others have not differentiated them. The objective of the current study was to identify distinct profiles of EF across typically developing (TD) children and c...

  1. Executive function on the Psychology Experiment Building Language tests.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Piper, Brian J; Li, Victoria; Eiwaz, Massarra A; Kobel, Yuliyana V; Benice, Ted S; Chu, Alex M; Olsen, Reid H J; Rice, Douglas Z; Gray, Hilary M; Mueller, Shane T; Raber, Jacob

    2012-03-01

    The measurement of executive function has a long history in clinical and experimental neuropsychology. The goal of the present report was to determine the profile of behavior across the lifespan on four computerized measures of executive function contained in the recently developed Psychology Experiment Building Language (PEBL) test battery http://pebl.sourceforge.net/ and evaluate whether this pattern is comparable to data previously obtained with the non-PEBL versions of these tests. Participants (N = 1,223; ages, 5-89 years) completed the PEBL Trail Making Test (pTMT), the Wisconsin Card Sort Test (pWCST; Berg, Journal of General Psychology, 39, 15-22, 1948; Grant & Berg, Journal of Experimental Psychology, 38, 404-411, 1948), the Tower of London (pToL), or a time estimation task (Time-Wall). Age-related effects were found over all four tests, especially as age increased from young childhood through adulthood. For several tests and measures (including pToL and pTMT), age-related slowing was found as age increased in adulthood. Together, these findings indicate that the PEBL tests provide valid and versatile new research tools for measuring executive functions.

  2. The effects of bilingual growth on toddlers' executive function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crivello, Cristina; Kuzyk, Olivia; Rodrigues, Monyka; Friend, Margaret; Zesiger, Pascal; Poulin-Dubois, Diane

    2016-01-01

    The mastery of two languages provides bilingual speakers with cognitive benefits over monolinguals, particularly on cognitive flexibility and selective attention. However, extant research is limited to comparisons between monolinguals and bilinguals at a single point in time. This study investigated whether growth in bilingual proficiency, as shown by an increased number of translation equivalents (TEs) over a 7-month period, improves executive function. We hypothesized that bilingual toddlers with a larger increase of TEs would have more practice in switching across lexical systems, boosting executive function abilities. Expressive vocabulary and TEs were assessed at 24 and 31 months of age. A battery of tasks, including conflict, delay, and working memory tasks, was administered at 31 months. As expected, we observed a task-specific advantage in inhibitory control in bilinguals. More important, within the bilingual group, larger increases in the number of TEs predicted better performance on conflict tasks but not on delay tasks. This unique longitudinal design confirms the relation between executive function and early bilingualism.

  3. Baduanjin Mind-Body Intervention Improves the Executive Control Function

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Tingting; Yue, Guang H.; Tian, Yingxue; Jiang, Changhao

    2017-01-01

    This study aims at comparing the effects of the Baduanjin mind-body (BMB) intervention with a conventional relaxation training program on enhancing the executive function. The study also attempts to explore the neural substrates underlying the cognitive effect of BMB intervention using near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) technique. Forty-two healthy college students were randomly allocated into either the Baduanjin intervention group or relaxation training (control) group. Training lasted for 8 weeks (90 min/day, 5 days/week). Each participant was administered the shortened Profile of Mood States to evaluate their mood status and the flanker task to evaluate executive function before and after training. While performing the flanker task, the NIRS data were collected from each participant. After training, individuals who have participated in BMB exercise showed a significant reduction in depressive mood compared with the same measure before the intervention. However, participants in the control group showed no such reduction. The before vs. after measurement difference in the flanker task incongruent trails was significant only for the Baduanjin intervention group. Interestingly, an increase in oxygenated hemoglobin in the left prefrontal cortex was observed during the Incongruent Trails test only after the BMB exercise intervention. These findings implicate that Baduanjin is an effective and easy-to-administering mind-body exercise for improving executive function and perhaps brain self-regulation in a young and healthy population. PMID:28133453

  4. Executive Functions in Intellectual Disabilities: A Comparison between Williams Syndrome and Down Syndrome

    Science.gov (United States)

    Costanzo, Floriana; Varuzza, Cristiana; Menghini, Deny; Addona, Francesca; Gianesini, Tiziana; Vicari, Stefano

    2013-01-01

    Executive functions are a set of high cognitive abilities that control and regulate other functions and behaviors and are crucial for successful adaptation. Deficits in executive functions are frequently described in developmental disorders, which are characterized by disadaptive behavior. However, executive functions are not widely examined in…

  5. Executive Functions in Intellectual Disabilities: A Comparison between Williams Syndrome and Down Syndrome

    Science.gov (United States)

    Costanzo, Floriana; Varuzza, Cristiana; Menghini, Deny; Addona, Francesca; Gianesini, Tiziana; Vicari, Stefano

    2013-01-01

    Executive functions are a set of high cognitive abilities that control and regulate other functions and behaviors and are crucial for successful adaptation. Deficits in executive functions are frequently described in developmental disorders, which are characterized by disadaptive behavior. However, executive functions are not widely examined in…

  6. Executive Functions and Motor Ability Contribute to Children's Participation in Daily Activities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rosenberg, Limor; Jacobi, Shani; Bart, Orit

    2017-01-01

    Executive functions are crucial for efficient daily functioning. However, the contribution of executive functions to the participation in daily life activities of children, have been inadequately studied. The study aimed to examine the unique contribution of executive functions, beyond motor ability, to the diversity and independence of children's…

  7. Assessing Executive Function components in 9 years old children

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sandra Reyes

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available Executive Function (EF is a multidimensional construct. It includes a set of abilities that allows to execute actions with a purpose, aimed to a goal, in an efficient way. The objective of this work is to explore some of the cognitive abilities that constitute a common factor for EF in 9 years-old children. The chosen instruments: Batería de Evaluación Neuropsicológica de la Función Ejecutiva en niños (ENFEN (Battery of Neuropsychological Assessment for Executive Function in Children, along with the Backward Digits Subtestfrom the WISC-III, were administered to 101 children from private schools of Buenos Aires State, Argentina. The ENFEN consists on EF tasks, including Phonological and Semantic Fluency, Trail Making Test versions for children (gray and colored sets, Interference Task, and Planning disc movements according to a model. An initial confirmatory factor analysis didn’t show significant fit indexes, being the Inhibitory control the variable with the lower and non significant factorial weight. A second model excluding the Inhibitory control measure was conducted, and it showed excellent fit indexes. Therefore, it can be concluded that at this age, some of the cognitive abilities included on the EF are: Phonological and Semantic Fluency, Sustained and Selective attention, Planning and Working memory; which is not the case for Inhibitory Control (measured by the Interference Task in the ENFEN.

  8. Executive functions in young patients with unipolar depression

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Totić-Poznanović Sanja

    2006-01-01

    Full Text Available Neuropsychological deficits associated with unipolar depression are seen in a broad range of cognitive domains. Executive deficits may be prominent in depression. Investigation of executive functions in younger adult patients with unipolar depression has been the focus of our study. Twenty-two consecutively depressive inpatients (24-36 years and 21 healthy control subjects, matched on age, gender, education and verbal IQ were included in the study. Neuropsychological tests for executive functions were applied to all subjects. Unipolar young depressives showed significantly reduced number of completed categories and more trials for completion of the first category on Wisconsin Card Sorting Test (WCST. No difference of tasks assessing the short-term memory, total errors on WCST, perseverative and non-perseverative errors, and of both phonemic and semantic conditions of verbal fluency was found between groups. The results suggested that unipolar depressives had specific cognitive style characterized by "negative cognitive set" (stronger negative reaction to negative feedback and by failure to use negative feedback to improve their performance.

  9. Precursors of executive function in infants with sickle cell anemia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hogan, Alexandra M; Telfer, Paul T; Kirkham, Fenella J; de Haan, Michelle

    2013-10-01

    Executive dysfunction occurs in sickle cell anemia, but there are few early data. Infants with sickle cell anemia (n = 14) and controls (n = 14) performed the "A-not-B" and Object Retrieval search tasks, measuring precursors of executive function at 9 and 12 months. Significant group differences were not found. However, for the A-not-B task, 7 of 11 sickle cell anemia infants scored in the lower 2 performance categories at 9 months, but only 1 at 12 months (P = .024); controls obtained scores at 12 months that were statistically comparable to the scores they had already obtained at 9 months. On the Object Retrieval task, 9- and 12-month controls showed comparable scores, whereas infants with sickle cell anemia continued to improve (P = .027); at 9 months, those with lower hemoglobin oxygen saturation passed fewer trials (R s = 0.670, P = .024) and took longer to obtain the toy (R s = -0.664, P = .013). Subtle delays in acquiring developmental skills may underlie abnormal executive function in childhood.

  10. Associations between daily physical activity and executive functioning in primary school-aged children

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van der Niet, Anneke G.; Smith, Joanne; Scherder, Erik J. A.; Oosterlaan, Jaap; Hartman, Esther; Visscher, Chris

    2015-01-01

    Objectives: While there is some evidence that aerobic fitness is positively associated with executive functioning in children, evidence for a relation between children's daily physical activity and their executive functioning is limited. The objective was to examine associations between objectively

  11. Executive Functions in Preschool Children With ADHD and DBD : An 18-Month Longitudinal Study

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Schoemaker, Kim; Bunte, Tessa; Espy, Kimberly Andrews; Dekovic, Maja; Matthys, Walter

    2014-01-01

    In this longitudinal study, we examined the stability of the association between executive functions and externalizing behavior problems, and the developmental change of executive functions in a predominately clinically diagnosed preschool sample (N = 200). Inhibition and working memory performance

  12. Diagnostic utility of the Key Search Test as a measure of executive functions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Oosterman, J.M.; Molenveld, M.; Olde Rikkert, M.G.M.; Kessels, R.P.C.

    2010-01-01

    Background: Executive function deficits are commonly observed in many clinical populations, highlighting the importance of appropriate diagnostic tools to screen for these deficits. Most neuropsychological tests of executive function, however, are time-consuming and difficult to administer in the

  13. Diagnostic utility of the Key Search Test as a measure of executive functions.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Oosterman, J.M.; Molenveld, M.; Olde Rikkert, M.G.M.; Kessels, R.P.C.

    2010-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Executive function deficits are commonly observed in many clinical populations, highlighting the importance of appropriate diagnostic tools to screen for these deficits. Most neuropsychological tests of executive function, however, are time-consuming and difficult to administer in the

  14. Executive Functions in Preschool Children With ADHD and DBD : An 18-Month Longitudinal Study

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Schoemaker, Kim; Bunte, Tessa; Espy, Kimberly Andrews; Dekovic, Maja; Matthys, Walter

    2014-01-01

    In this longitudinal study, we examined the stability of the association between executive functions and externalizing behavior problems, and the developmental change of executive functions in a predominately clinically diagnosed preschool sample (N = 200). Inhibition and working memory performance

  15. The relation between executive functions and school performance in healthy adolescents

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Boschloo, Annemarie; Krabbendam, Lydia; De Groot, Renate; Jolles, Jelle

    2012-01-01

    Boschloo, A., Krabbendam, L., De Groot, R., & Jolles, J. (2012, April). The relation between executive functions and school performance in healthy adolescents. Poster presented at the Development of executive functions workshop, Utrecht, The Netherlands.

  16. Executing application function calls in response to an interrupt

    Science.gov (United States)

    Almasi, Gheorghe; Archer, Charles J.; Giampapa, Mark E.; Gooding, Thomas M.; Heidelberger, Philip; Parker, Jeffrey J.

    2010-05-11

    Executing application function calls in response to an interrupt including creating a thread; receiving an interrupt having an interrupt type; determining whether a value of a semaphore represents that interrupts are disabled; if the value of the semaphore represents that interrupts are not disabled: calling, by the thread, one or more preconfigured functions in dependence upon the interrupt type of the interrupt; yielding the thread; and if the value of the semaphore represents that interrupts are disabled: setting the value of the semaphore to represent to a kernel that interrupts are hard-disabled; and hard-disabling interrupts at the kernel.

  17. Executive Functions in Learning Processes: Do They Benefit from Physical Activity?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barenberg, Jonathan; Berse, Timo; Dutke, Stephan

    2011-01-01

    As executive functions play an essential role in learning processes, approaches capable of enhancing executive functioning are of particular interest to educational psychology. Recently, the hypothesis has been advanced that executive functioning may benefit from changes in neurobiological processes induced by physical activity. The present…

  18. Individual Differences in Executive Functions Are Almost Entirely Genetic in Origin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Friedman, Naomi P.; Miyake, Akira; Young, Susan E.; DeFries, John C.; Corley, Robin P.; Hewitt, John K.

    2008-01-01

    Recent psychological and neuropsychological research suggests that executive functions--the cognitive control processes that regulate thought and action--are multifaceted and that different types of executive functions are correlated but separable. The present multivariate twin study of 3 executive functions (inhibiting dominant responses,…

  19. Executive Functions in Learning Processes: Do They Benefit from Physical Activity?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barenberg, Jonathan; Berse, Timo; Dutke, Stephan

    2011-01-01

    As executive functions play an essential role in learning processes, approaches capable of enhancing executive functioning are of particular interest to educational psychology. Recently, the hypothesis has been advanced that executive functioning may benefit from changes in neurobiological processes induced by physical activity. The present…

  20. A Show of Hands: Relations between Young Children's Gesturing and Executive Function

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Neill, Gina; Miller, Patricia H.

    2013-01-01

    This study brought together 2 literatures--gesturing and executive function--in order to examine the possible role of gesture in children's executive function. Children (N = 41) aged 2½-6 years performed a sorting-shift executive function task (Dimensional Change Card Sort). Responses of interest included correct sorting, response latency,…

  1. The structure of executive functions and relations with early math learning

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van der Ven, S.H.G.

    2011-01-01

    In this dissertation, the relation between executive functions and mathematical skills in children was investigated. Two main aims were addressed: (1) unraveling the structure of executive functions, and (2) investigating the nature of the relations between executive functions and mathematics. Conce

  2. Executive functioning and non-verbal intelligence as predictors of bullying in early elementary school

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Verlinden, Marina; Veenstra, René; Ghassabian, Akhgar; Jansen, P.W.; Hofman, Albert; Jaddoe, Vincent W. V.; Verhulst, F.C.; Tiemeier, Henning

    2014-01-01

    Executive function and intelligence are negatively associated with aggression, yet the role of executive function has rarely been examined in the context of school bullying. We studied whether different domains of executive function and non-verbal intelligence are associated with bullying involvemen

  3. Yoga practice improves executive function by attenuating stress levels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gothe, Neha P; Keswani, Rahul K; McAuley, Edward

    2016-12-01

    Prolonged activation of the hypothalamus-pituitary-adrenal system is thought to have deleterious effects on brain function. Neuroendocrine studies suggest that brain exposure to higher cortisol concentrations contribute to cognitive deficits as we age. Mind-body techniques such as yoga have shown to improve stress levels by restoring the body's sympathetic-parasympathetic balance. The objective of this study was to determine whether yoga practice moderated the stress response resulting in improved executive function. Sedentary community dwelling older adults (N=118, Mean age=62.02) were randomized to an 8-week yoga intervention or a stretching control group. At baseline and following 8 weeks, all participants completed measures of executive function, self-reported stress and anxiety and provided saliva samples before and after cognitive testing to assess cortisol. Yoga participants showed improved accuracy on executive function measures and an attenuated cortisol response compared to their stretching counterparts who showed increased cortisol levels and poor cognitive performance at follow up. The change in cortisol levels as well as self-reported stress and anxiety levels predicted performance on the running span task, n-back working memory and task switching paradigm (β's=0.27-0.38, p's≤0.05 for yoga and β's=-0.37-0.47, p's≤0.01 for stretching control). Eight weeks of regular yoga practice resulted in improved working memory performance that was mediated by an attenuated response to stress as measured by self-report stress and objective salivary cortisol measurements. This trial offers evidence for non-traditional physical activity interventions such as yoga that may be helpful in restoring HPA balance in older adults, thereby preventing cognitive decline. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  4. Self-report measures of executive function problems correlate with personality, not performance-based executive function measures, in nonclinical samples.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buchanan, Tom

    2016-04-01

    Researchers and clinicians often measure executive function in patients and normal samples. In addition to cognitive tests that objectively measure executive function, several instruments have been developed that address individuals' everyday experience of executive problems. Such self-report measures of executive problems may have value, but there are questions about the extent to which they tap objectively measurable executive problems or are influenced by variables such as personality. Relationships between self-reported executive problems, personality, and cognitive test performance were assessed in 3 separate, well-powered, methodologically distinct correlational studies using nonclinical samples. These studies used multiple measures of personality and self-reported executive function problems. Across all 3 studies, self-reported executive function problems were found to correlate with neuroticism and with low conscientiousness, with medium to large effect sizes. However self-reported problems did not correlate with performance on Trail Making, Phonemic Fluency, Semantic Fluency, or Digit Span tests tapping executive function. A key implication of these findings is that in nonclinical samples, self-report questionnaires may not be proxies for executive functioning as measured by neuropsychological tests.

  5. Investigating the effects of caffeine on executive functions using traditional Stroop and a new ecologically-valid virtual reality task, the Jansari assessment of Executive Functions (JEF©)

    OpenAIRE

    Soar, Kirstie; E. Chapman; Sivakuma, N.; Jansari, A.S.; Turner, John J.D.

    2016-01-01

    Objective: Caffeine has been shown to have effects on certain areas of cognition, but in\\ud executive functioning the research is limited and also inconsistent. One reason could be the\\ud need for a more sensitive measure to detect the effects of caffeine on executive function. This\\ud study used a new non-immersive virtual reality assessment of executive functions known as\\ud JEF© (the Jansari Assessment of Executive Function) alongside the ‘classic’ Stroop Colour-\\ud Word task to assess the...

  6. Everyday executive functioning influences adaptive skills in autism spectrum disorders

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rachel K. Peterson

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available Adaptive skills are often defined as a set of behaviors or constellation of skills that allow for an individual to function independently and meet environmental demands. Adaptive skills have been linked with an array of social and academic outcomes. Executive functions (EF have been defined as a set of “capacities that enable a person to engage successfully in independent, purposive, self-serving behavior”. While the literature has demonstrated some overlap in the definitions of adaptive skills and the purpose of executive functions, little has been done to investigate the relationship between the two. The current study sought to investigate this relationship within Autistic Spectrum Disorders (ASD, a clinical grouping that has demonstrated a predisposition towards deficits within both of these functional domains. ASD are oftentimes associated with EF deficits, especially in the domains of cognitive flexibility, planning, and working memory. Deficits in adaptive skills have also been commonly reported in relation to ASD, with a wide range of abilities being noted across previous studies. The purpose of this study was to examine relationships between adaptive skills and EF in individuals with ASD with the idea that an understanding of such relationships may offer insight into possible focus for intervention.

  7. Executive functioning and alcohol binge drinking in university students.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parada, María; Corral, Montserrat; Mota, Nayara; Crego, Alberto; Rodríguez Holguín, Socorro; Cadaveira, Fernando

    2012-02-01

    Binge drinking (BD) is prevalent among college students. Studies on alcoholism have shown that the prefrontal cortex is vulnerable to the neurotoxic effects of alcohol. The prefrontal cortex undergoes both structural and functional changes during adolescence and young adulthood. Sex differences have been observed in brain maturation and in alcohol-induced damage. The objective of the present study was to analyze the relationship between BD and cognitive functions subserved by the prefrontal cortex in male and female university students. The sample comprised 122 undergraduates (aged 18 to 20 years): 62 BD (30 females) and 60 non-BD (29 females). Executive functions were assessed by WMS-III (Backward Digit Span and Backward Spatial Span), SOPT (abstract designs), Letter Fluency (PMR), BADS (Zoo Map and Key Search) and WCST-3. BD students scored lower in the Backward Digit Span Subtest and generated more perseverative responses in the SOPT In relation to interaction BD by sex, BD males scored lower in the Backward Digit Span test than BD females and non-BD males. BD is associated with poorer performance of executive functions subserved by the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex. The results do not support enhanced vulnerability of women to alcohol neurotoxic effects. These difficulties may reflect developmental delay or frontal lobe dysfunction. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. Relationships between Motor and Executive Functions and the Effect of an Acute Coordinative Intervention on Executive Functions in Kindergartners.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stein, Marion; Auerswald, Max; Ebersbach, Mirjam

    2017-01-01

    There is growing evidence indicating positive, causal effects of acute physical activity on cognitive performance of school children, adolescents, and adults. However, only a few studies examined these effects in kindergartners, even though correlational studies suggest moderate relationships between motor and cognitive functions in this age group. One aim of the present study was to examine the correlational relationships between motor and executive functions among 5- to 6-year-olds. Another aim was to test whether an acute coordinative intervention, which was adapted to the individual motor functions of the children, causally affected different executive functions (i.e., motor inhibition, cognitive inhibition, and shifting). Kindergartners (N = 102) were randomly assigned either to a coordinative intervention (20 min) or to a control condition (20 min). The coordination group performed five bimanual exercises (e.g., throwing/kicking balls onto targets with the right and left hand/foot), whereas the control group took part in five simple activities that hardly involved coordination skills (e.g., stamping). Children's motor functions were assessed with the Movement Assessment Battery for Children 2 (Petermann, 2009) in a pre-test (T1), 1 week before the intervention took place. Motor inhibition was assessed with the Simon says task (Carlson and Wang, 2007), inhibition and shifting were assessed with the Hearts and Flowers task (Davidson et al., 2006) in the pre-test and again in a post-test (T2) immediately after the interventions. Results revealed significant correlations between motor functions and executive functions (especially shifting) at T1. There was no overall effect of the intervention. However, explorative analyses indicated a three-way interaction, with the intervention leading to accuracy gains only in the motor inhibition task and only if it was tested directly after the intervention. As an unexpected effect, this result needs to be treated with

  9. Relationships between Motor and Executive Functions and the Effect of an Acute Coordinative Intervention on Executive Functions in Kindergartners

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stein, Marion; Auerswald, Max; Ebersbach, Mirjam

    2017-01-01

    There is growing evidence indicating positive, causal effects of acute physical activity on cognitive performance of school children, adolescents, and adults. However, only a few studies examined these effects in kindergartners, even though correlational studies suggest moderate relationships between motor and cognitive functions in this age group. One aim of the present study was to examine the correlational relationships between motor and executive functions among 5- to 6-year-olds. Another aim was to test whether an acute coordinative intervention, which was adapted to the individual motor functions of the children, causally affected different executive functions (i.e., motor inhibition, cognitive inhibition, and shifting). Kindergartners (N = 102) were randomly assigned either to a coordinative intervention (20 min) or to a control condition (20 min). The coordination group performed five bimanual exercises (e.g., throwing/kicking balls onto targets with the right and left hand/foot), whereas the control group took part in five simple activities that hardly involved coordination skills (e.g., stamping). Children’s motor functions were assessed with the Movement Assessment Battery for Children 2 (Petermann, 2009) in a pre-test (T1), 1 week before the intervention took place. Motor inhibition was assessed with the Simon says task (Carlson and Wang, 2007), inhibition and shifting were assessed with the Hearts and Flowers task (Davidson et al., 2006) in the pre-test and again in a post-test (T2) immediately after the interventions. Results revealed significant correlations between motor functions and executive functions (especially shifting) at T1. There was no overall effect of the intervention. However, explorative analyses indicated a three-way interaction, with the intervention leading to accuracy gains only in the motor inhibition task and only if it was tested directly after the intervention. As an unexpected effect, this result needs to be treated with

  10. Prefrontal cortex and neural mechanisms of executive function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Funahashi, Shintaro; Andreau, Jorge Mario

    2013-12-01

    Executive function is a product of the coordinated operation of multiple neural systems and an essential prerequisite for a variety of cognitive functions. The prefrontal cortex is known to be a key structure for the performance of executive functions. To accomplish the coordinated operations of multiple neural systems, the prefrontal cortex must monitor the activities in other cortical and subcortical structures and control and supervise their operations by sending command signals, which is called top-down signaling. Although neurophysiological and neuroimaging studies have provided evidence that the prefrontal cortex sends top-down signals to the posterior cortices to control information processing, the neural correlate of these top-down signals is not yet known. Through use of the paired association task, it has been demonstrated that top-down signals are used to retrieve specific information stored in long-term memory. Therefore, we used a paired association task to examine the neural correlates of top-down signals in the prefrontal cortex. The preliminary results indicate that 32% of visual neurons exhibit pair-selectivity, which is similar to the characteristics of pair-coding activities in temporal neurons. The latency of visual responses in prefrontal neurons was longer than bottom-up signals but faster than top-down signals in inferior temporal neurons. These results suggest that pair-selective visual responses may be top-down signals that the prefrontal cortex provides to the temporal cortex, although further studies are needed to elucidate the neural correlates of top-down signals and their characteristics to understand the neural mechanism of executive control by the prefrontal cortex.

  11. Social Maturity and Executive Function Among Deaf Learners.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marschark, Marc; Kronenberger, William G; Rosica, Mark; Borgna, Georgianna; Convertino, Carol; Durkin, Andreana; Machmer, Elizabeth; Schmitz, Kathryn L

    2017-01-01

    Two experiments examined relations among social maturity, executive function, language, and cochlear implant (CI) use among deaf high school and college students. Experiment 1 revealed no differences between deaf CI users, deaf nonusers, and hearing college students in measures of social maturity. However, deaf students (both CI users and nonusers) reported significantly greater executive function (EF) difficulties in several domains, and EF was related to social maturity. Experiment 2 found that deaf CI users and nonusers in high school did not differ from each other in social maturity or EF, but individuals who relied on sign language reported significantly more immature behaviors than deaf peers who used spoken language. EF difficulties again were associated with social maturity. The present results indicate that EF and social maturity are interrelated, but those relations vary in different deaf subpopulations. As with academic achievement, CI use appears to have little long-term impact on EF or social maturity. Results are discussed in terms of their convergence with findings related to incidental learning and functioning in several domains.

  12. Individual differences in anxiety and executive functioning: a multidimensional view.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Visu-Petra, Laura; Miclea, Mircea; Visu-Petra, George

    2013-01-01

    The relationship between individual differences in anxiety and executive functioning was investigated in a sample of young adults. Verbal and spatial working memory, resistance to interference, negative priming, and task-switching measures were used to assess three executive functioning dimensions: updating, inhibition, and shifting. An additional index of basic psychomotor speed was added to this cognitive battery. According to the multidimensional interaction model of anxiety proposed by Endler (1997), state (cognitive-worry and autonomic-emotional) and trait (related to social evaluation, physical danger, ambiguous situations, and daily routines) anxiety were assessed in this evaluation context. Results indicated that shifting and inhibition (negative priming) efficiency were negatively related to state (cognitive-worry) and trait (related to social evaluation) anxiety. However, there was a relative advantage of subjects higher in social evaluation apprehensions in their memory updating performance. The results are consistent with several predictions of the attentional control theory (Eysenck, Derakshan, Santos, & Calvo, 2007), and are relevant for research regarding the interaction of situational, personality, and cognitive functioning dimensions.

  13. Executive Functioning and the Metabolic Syndrome: A Project FRONTIER Study

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    Falkowski, Jed; Atchison, Timothy; DeButte-Smith, Maxine; Weiner, Myron F.; O'Bryant, Sid

    2014-01-01

    Decrements in cognitive functioning have been linked to the metabolic syndrome (MetS), a risk factor for cardiovascular disease defined by the presence of three of the following: elevated blood pressure, increased waist circumference, elevated blood glucose, elevated triglycerides, and low high-density lipoprotein cholesterol. We examined the relationship between four measures of executive functioning (EF) and MetS as diagnosed by National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute-American Heart Association criteria. MetS was examined in a rural population of 395 persons with a mean age of 61.3 years, 71.4% women, 37.0% Hispanic, 53.7% White non-Hispanic. There was a 61.0% prevalence of MetS. We derived a factor score from the four executive function measures which was used to compare those with and without the syndrome, as well as any additive effects of components of the syndrome. Those with MetS exhibited significantly poorer performance than those without the syndrome. However, there was no additive effect, having more components of the syndrome was not related to lower performance. The presence of MetS was associated with poorer EF in this rural cohort of community dwelling volunteers. PMID:24152591

  14. Executive functioning in children with congenital adrenal hyperplasia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Agoston, A Monica; Gonzalez-Bolanos, Maria Teresa; Semrud-Clikeman, Margaret; Vanderburg, Nancy; Sarafoglou, Kyriakie

    2017-01-01

    Congenital adrenal hyperplasia (CAH) due to 21-hydroxylase deficiency is a disorder characterized by impaired cortisol synthesis leading to excessive production of adrenal androgens. Prenatal and postnatal exposure to excess androgens may increase neural vulnerability to insult and affect cognitive functions, particularly dopamine-dependent neural circuits responsible for executive functioning (EF). Our study aimed to investigate relationship between more pronounced androgen exposure and EF-related behaviors in children with CAH, as well as sex differences in these associations. Parents of patients with CAH (n=41, boys=17, girls=24; age: M=8.41, SD=4.43) completed the Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function (BRIEF), a measure assessing behavioral manifestations of EF. Assessments of bone age advancement, a proxy of cumulative androgen exposure, were analyzed. Advanced bone age predicted more inhibition difficulties in boys but not in girls, and more difficulties in all other BRIEF domains in the total sample. Excessive androgen production affected EF such that more advanced bone age led to more EF-related difficulties. Sex differences in inhibition may result from estrogen exposure moderating the impact of androgens in girls but not in boys. Future interventions may include targeting EF in patients with CAH to enhance quality of life and reduce cognitive consequences associated with this disease.

  15. Relations between Short-term Memory Deficits, Semantic Processing, and Executive Function

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allen, Corinne M.; Martin, Randi C.; Martin, Nadine

    2012-01-01

    Background Previous research has suggested separable short-term memory (STM) buffers for the maintenance of phonological and lexical-semantic information, as some patients with aphasia show better ability to retain semantic than phonological information and others show the reverse. Recently, researchers have proposed that deficits to the maintenance of semantic information in STM are related to executive control abilities. Aims The present study investigated the relationship of executive function abilities with semantic and phonological short-term memory (STM) and semantic processing in such patients, as some previous research has suggested that semantic STM deficits and semantic processing abilities are critically related to specific or general executive function deficits. Method and Procedures 20 patients with aphasia and STM deficits were tested on measures of short-term retention, semantic processing, and both complex and simple executive function tasks. Outcome and Results In correlational analyses, we found no relation between semantic STM and performance on simple or complex executive function tasks. In contrast, phonological STM was related to executive function performance in tasks that had a verbal component, suggesting that performance in some executive function tasks depends on maintaining or rehearsing phonological codes. Although semantic STM was not related to executive function ability, performance on semantic processing tasks was related to executive function, perhaps due to similar executive task requirements in both semantic processing and executive function tasks. Conclusions Implications for treatment and interpretations of executive deficits are discussed. PMID:22736889

  16. Endothelial Function Is Associated with White Matter Microstructure and Executive Function in Older Adults

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nathan F. Johnson

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Age-related declines in endothelial function can lead to cognitive decline. However, little is known about the relationships between endothelial function and specific neurocognitive functions. This study explored the relationship between measures of endothelial function (reactive hyperemia index; RHI, white matter (WM health (fractional anisotropy, FA, and WM hyperintensity volume, WMH, and executive function (Trail Making Test (TMT; Trail B − Trail A. Participants were 36 older adults between the ages of 59 and 69 (mean age = 63.89 years, SD = 2.94. WMH volume showed no relationship with RHI or executive function. However, there was a positive relationship between RHI and FA in the genu and body of the corpus callosum. In addition, higher RHI and FA were each associated with better executive task performance. Tractography was used to localize the WM tracts associated with RHI to specific portions of cortex. Results indicated that the RHI-FA relationship observed in the corpus callosum primarily involved tracts interconnecting frontal regions, including the superior frontal gyrus (SFG and frontopolar cortex, linked with executive function. These findings suggest that superior endothelial function may help to attenuate age-related declines in WM microstructure in portions of the corpus callosum that interconnect prefrontal brain regions involved in executive function.

  17. Endothelial Function Is Associated with White Matter Microstructure and Executive Function in Older Adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Nathan F; Gold, Brian T; Brown, Christopher A; Anggelis, Emily F; Bailey, Alison L; Clasey, Jody L; Powell, David K

    2017-01-01

    Age-related declines in endothelial function can lead to cognitive decline. However, little is known about the relationships between endothelial function and specific neurocognitive functions. This study explored the relationship between measures of endothelial function (reactive hyperemia index; RHI), white matter (WM) health (fractional anisotropy, FA, and WM hyperintensity volume, WMH), and executive function (Trail Making Test (TMT); Trail B - Trail A). Participants were 36 older adults between the ages of 59 and 69 (mean age = 63.89 years, SD = 2.94). WMH volume showed no relationship with RHI or executive function. However, there was a positive relationship between RHI and FA in the genu and body of the corpus callosum. In addition, higher RHI and FA were each associated with better executive task performance. Tractography was used to localize the WM tracts associated with RHI to specific portions of cortex. Results indicated that the RHI-FA relationship observed in the corpus callosum primarily involved tracts interconnecting frontal regions, including the superior frontal gyrus (SFG) and frontopolar cortex, linked with executive function. These findings suggest that superior endothelial function may help to attenuate age-related declines in WM microstructure in portions of the corpus callosum that interconnect prefrontal brain regions involved in executive function.

  18. Adult Age Differences in Functional Connectivity during Executive Control

    Science.gov (United States)

    Madden, David J.; Costello, Matthew C.; Dennis, Nancy A.; Davis, Simon W.; Shepler, Anne M.; Spaniol, Julia; Bucur, Barbara; Cabeza, Roberto

    2010-01-01

    Task switching requires executive control processes that undergo age-related decline. Previous neuroimaging studies have identified age-related differences in brain activation associated with global switching effects (dual-task blocks vs. single-task blocks), but age-related differences in activation during local switching effects (switch trials vs. repeat trials, within blocks) have not been investigated. This experiment used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), and diffusion tensor imaging (DTI), to examine adult age differences in task switching across adjacent trials (i.e., local task switching). During fMRI scanning, participants performed a cued, word categorization task. From interspersed cue-only trials, switch-related processing associated with the cue was estimated separately from the target. Activation associated with task switching, within a distributed frontoparietal network, differed for cue- and target-related processing. The magnitude of event-related activation for task switching was similar for younger adults (n = 20; 18-27 years) and older adults (n = 20; 60-85 years), although activation sustained throughout the on-tasks periods exhibited some age-related decline. Critically, the functional connectivity of switch-related regions, during cue processing, was higher for younger adults than for older adults, whereas functional connectivity during target processing was comparable across the age groups. Further, individual differences in cue-related functional connectivity shared a substantial portion of the age-related variability in the efficiency of target categorization response (drift rate). This age-related difference in functional connectivity, however, was independent of white matter integrity within task-relevant regions. These findings highlight the functional connectivity of frontoparietal activation as a potential source of age-related decline in executive control. PMID:20434565

  19. Relationship between Parenting Stress and Ratings of Executive Functioning in Children with ADHD

    Science.gov (United States)

    Joyner, Krystle B.; Silver, Cheryl H.; Stavinoha, Peter L.

    2009-01-01

    Executive functioning is important to assess in children with attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Parent report is used to obtain information about a child's executive functioning; however, parent report can be influenced by many factors. This study's hypothesis was that higher ratings of children's executive dysfunction are…

  20. Specific Language Impairment and Executive Functioning: Parent and Teacher Ratings of Behavior

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wittke, Kacie; Spaulding, Tammie J.; Schechtman, Calli J.

    2013-01-01

    Purpose: The current study used the Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function--Preschool Version (BRIEF-P; Gioia, Espy, & Isquith, 2003), a rating scale designed to investigate executive behaviors in everyday activities, to examine the executive functioning of preschool children with specific language impairment (SLI) relative to their…

  1. Correlation between videogame mechanics and executive functions through EEG analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mondéjar, Tania; Hervás, Ramón; Johnson, Esperanza; Gutierrez, Carlos; Latorre, José Miguel

    2016-10-01

    This paper addresses a different point of view of videogames, specifically serious games for health. This paper contributes to that area with a multidisciplinary perspective focus on neurosciences and computation. The experiment population has been pre-adolescents between the ages of 8 and 12 without any cognitive issues. The experiment consisted in users playing videogames as well as performing traditional psychological assessments; during these tasks the frontal brain activity was evaluated. The main goal was to analyse how the frontal lobe of the brain (executive function) works in terms of prominent cognitive skills during five types of game mechanics widely used in commercial videogames. The analysis was made by collecting brain signals during the two phases of the experiment, where the signals were analysed with an electroencephalogram neuroheadset. The validated hypotheses were whether videogames can develop executive functioning and if it was possible to identify which kind of cognitive skills are developed during each kind of typical videogame mechanic. The results contribute to the design of serious games for health purposes on a conceptual level, particularly in support of the diagnosis and treatment of cognitive-related pathologies.

  2. The Rule of Four, Executive Function and Neural Exercises

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Russell Jay Hendel

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Deborah Hughes-Hallet has made many significant contributions to Calculus pedagogy. Among the tools she has introduced is the rule of four, which requires successful pedagogy to simultaneously address four approaches to each course concept, verbal, graphical, algebraic and numeric. We explore examples of this rule of X approach in other disciplines: i Literary analysis is enhanced through the rule of two, a simultaneous approach of grammar and literary analysis; ii Actuarial mathematics requires a rule of six, a simultaneous approach of verbal, graphical, algebraic, calculator, modules, and English conventions; (iii Masters of Tic-Tac-Toe and Chess use a rule of two, simultaneously approaching the game positionally and combinatorically. We offer a unified and deep analysis of the rule of X approach by relating it to executive function, the area of the brain responsible for organizing and synthesizing multiple brain areas. We conclude the paper with an illustration of classroom activities that strengthen executive function and improve pedagogy. Our results are content independent, depending exclusively on paths of information flow, and consequently, our analysis is cybernetic in flavor [1]. [1] American Society of Cybernetics, www.asc-cybernetics.org/

  3. Executive function and fluid intelligence after frontal lobe lesions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roca, María; Parr, Alice; Thompson, Russell; Woolgar, Alexandra; Torralva, Teresa; Antoun, Nagui; Manes, Facundo; Duncan, John

    2010-01-01

    Many tests of specific 'executive functions' show deficits after frontal lobe lesions. These deficits appear on a background of reduced fluid intelligence, best measured with tests of novel problem solving. For a range of specific executive tests, we ask how far frontal deficits can be explained by a general fluid intelligence loss. For some widely used tests, e.g. Wisconsin Card Sorting, we find that fluid intelligence entirely explains frontal deficits. When patients and controls are matched on fluid intelligence, no further frontal deficit remains. For these tasks too, deficits are unrelated to lesion location within the frontal lobe. A second group of tasks, including tests of both cognitive (e.g. Hotel, Proverbs) and social (Faux Pas) function, shows a different pattern. Deficits are not fully explained by fluid intelligence and the data suggest association with lesions in the right anterior frontal cortex. Understanding of frontal lobe deficits may be clarified by separating reduced fluid intelligence, important in most or all tasks, from other more specific impairments and their associated regions of damage.

  4. Executive Functions in Tobacco Dependence: Importance of Inhibitory Capacities.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Valentin Flaudias

    Full Text Available Executive functions are linked to tobacco dependence and craving. In this cross-sectional study, we assessed the impact of three executive functions: updating, inhibition and shifting processes on tobacco craving and dependence.134 tobacco consumers were included in this study: 81 moderately (Fagerström score 7. Dependence was assessed with the Fagerström test and craving with the tobacco craving questionnaire (TCQ 12. We used the Stroop test and the Hayling test to measure inhibition, the Trail Making Test to measure shifting processes and the n-back test to measure updating processes. A multivariate logistic model was used to assess which variables explained best the level of nicotine dependence.Inhibition (p = 0.002 and updating (p = 0.014 processes, but not shifting processes, were associated with higher tobacco dependence. Inhibition capacity had a significant effect on the nicotine dependence level independently of age, education, time since last cigarette, intellectual quotient, craving, updating and shifting process.Nicotine dependence level seems better explained by inhibition capacities than by craving and updating effects. The capacity to inhibit our behaviours is a good predictor of the severity of tobacco dependence. Our results suggest a prefrontal cortex dysfunction affecting the inhibitory capacities of heavy tobacco dependent smokers. Further studies are needed to investigate the application of these findings in the treatment of tobacco dependence.

  5. Affective temperament and executive functions in emergency medicine professionals.

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    Jaracz, Marcin; Paciorek, Przemysław; Buciński, Adam; Borkowska, Alina

    2014-10-01

    Recent studies indicate that choice of profession is related to differences in affective temperament, which is probably due to various predispositions needed to efficiently perform particular professions. The aim of the present study was to assess affective temperament and executive functions in a sample of emergency medicine professionals. 75 emergency medicine professionals were enrolled in the study. Affective temperament was assessed by means of TEMPS-A. Executive functions were assessed by means of Trail Making Test and Stroop Color Word Interference Test. Subjects showed significantly higher rates of hyperthymic, compared to depressive, cyclothymic, irritable and anxious temperaments. The principal component analysis revealed that hyperthymic temperament contributes to a different factor, than the remaining ones. Higher rates of depressive, cyclothymic, irritable and anxious temperaments were related to poorer performance in Trail Making Test, whereas hyperthymic temperament had the opposite effect. Due to the size of the sample, results of the present study may have lacked power to show all the relationships between tested variables. Hyperthymic temperament promotes efficient performance of complex tasks under time pressure. Depressive, cyclothymic, irritable and anxious temperaments have the opposite effect. This makes hyperthymic temperament a desirable trait in emergency medicine professionals, performing complex medical tasks under extreme conditions. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  6. Relating Worry and Executive Functioning During Childhood: The Moderating Role of Age.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Geronimi, Elena M C; Patterson, Heather L; Woodruff-Borden, Janet

    2016-06-01

    The associations between worry and executive functioning across development have not been previously explored. Examining the interrelationships between these variables in childhood may further elucidate the cognitive nature of worry as well as its developmental course. Hypotheses predicted that difficulties with executive functioning would correlate with child worry; based on extant literature, age-related hypotheses were proposed for particular aspects of executive functioning. Children (N = 130) participated in the present study. Difficulties with executive functioning and child worry were assessed. Results demonstrated that each executive functioning subscale correlated with worry. The relations between worry and several facets of executive functioning were no longer significant at older ages, while the relations between worry and the facets of inhibition, shifting, and emotional control did not demonstrate age-related interaction effects. Overall, the findings suggest that worry is associated with executive functioning at young ages and that this association takes distinct forms during different childhood stages.

  7. Prospective associations between bilingualism and executive function in Latino children: sustained effects while controlling for biculturalism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Riggs, Nathaniel R; Shin, Hee-Sung; Unger, Jennifer B; Spruijt-Metz, Donna; Pentz, Mary Ann

    2014-10-01

    The study purpose was to test 1-year prospective associations between English-Spanish bilingualism and executive function in 5th to 6th grade students while controlling for biculturalism. Participants included 182 US Latino students (50 % female). Self-report surveys assessed biculturalism, bilingualism, and executive function (i.e., working memory, organizational skills, inhibitory control, and emotional control, as well as a summary executive function score). General linear model regressions demonstrated that bilingualism significantly predicted the summary executive function score as well as working memory such that bilingual proficiency was positively related to executive function. Results are the first to demonstrate (a) prospective associations between bilingualism to executive function while controlling for the potential third variable of biculturalism, and (b) a principal role for working memory in this relationship. Since executive function is associated with a host of health outcomes, one implication of study findings is that bilingualism may have an indirect protective influence on youth development.

  8. Interventions shown to aid executive function development in children 4 to 12 years old.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Diamond, Adele; Lee, Kathleen

    2011-08-19

    To be successful takes creativity, flexibility, self-control, and discipline. Central to all those are executive functions, including mentally playing with ideas, giving a considered rather than an impulsive response, and staying focused. Diverse activities have been shown to improve children's executive functions: computerized training, noncomputerized games, aerobics, martial arts, yoga, mindfulness, and school curricula. All successful programs involve repeated practice and progressively increase the challenge to executive functions. Children with worse executive functions benefit most from these activities; thus, early executive-function training may avert widening achievement gaps later. To improve executive functions, focusing narrowly on them may not be as effective as also addressing emotional and social development (as do curricula that improve executive functions) and physical development (shown by positive effects of aerobics, martial arts, and yoga).

  9. The early development of executive function and its relation to social interaction: A brief review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yusuke eMoriguchi

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available Executive function (EF refers to the ability to execute appropriate actions and to inhibit inappropriate actions for the attainment of a specific goal. Research has shown that this ability develops rapidly during the preschool years. Recently, it has been proposed that research on executive function should consider the importance of social interaction. In this article, recent evidence regarding the early development of executive function and its relation to social interaction has been reviewed. Research consistently showed that social interaction can influence executive function skills in young children. However, the development of executive function may facilitate the cognitive skills that are important for social interaction. Taken together, there might be functional dependency between the development of executive function and social interaction.

  10. Age-related changes in executive function: a normative study with the Dutch version of the Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function (BRIEF)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Huizinga, M.; Smidts, D.P.

    2011-01-01

    This study examined age-related change in executive function by using a Dutch translation of the Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function (BRIEF; Gioia et al., 2000) that was applied to a normative sample (age range 5-18 years). In addition, we examined the reliability and factorial

  11. The mediating role of metacognition in the relationship between executive function and self-regulated learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Follmer, D Jake; Sperling, Rayne A

    2016-12-01

    Researchers have demonstrated significant relations among executive function, metacognition, and self-regulated learning. However, prior research emphasized the use of indirect measures of executive function and did not evaluate how specific executive functions are related to participants' self-regulated learning. The primary goals of the current study were to examine and test the relations among executive function, metacognition, and self-regulated learning as well as to examine how self-regulated learning is informed by executive function. The sample comprised 117 undergraduate students attending a large, Mid-Atlantic research university in the United States. Participants were individually administered direct and indirect measures of executive function, metacognition, and self-regulated learning. A mediation model specifying the relations among the regulatory constructs was proposed. In multiple linear regression analyses, executive function predicted metacognition and self-regulated learning. Direct measures of inhibition and shifting accounted for a significant amount of the variance in metacognition and self-regulated learning beyond an indirect measure of executive functioning. Separate mediation analyses indicated that metacognition mediated the relationship between executive functioning and self-regulated learning as well as between specific executive functions and self-regulated learning. The findings of this study are supported by previous research documenting the relations between executive function and self-regulated learning, and extend prior research by examining the manner in which executive function and self-regulated learning are linked. The findings provide initial support for executive functions as key processes, mediated by metacognition, that predict self-regulated learning. Implications for the contribution of executive functions to self-regulated learning are discussed. © 2016 The British Psychological Society.

  12. The relation of executive functioning to CVLT-II learning, memory, and process indexes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hill, Benjamin David; Alosco, Michael; Bauer, Lyndsey; Tremont, Geoffrey

    2012-01-01

    Previous research has found that executive functioning plays a role in memory performance. This study sought to determine the amount of variance accounted for in the California Verbal Learning Test-Second Edition (CVLT-II) by a global executive-functioning factor score. Archival data were extracted from 285 outpatients in a mixed neurologic sample. Measures used included: CVLT-II, Wisconsin Card-Sorting Test (Perseverative Errors), Trail-Making Test-Part B, Controlled Oral Word Association Test, Animal Naming, and Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale-Third Edition Similarities. Executive data were reduced to a single executive-functioning factor score for each individual. Regression was used to determine the amount of variance accounted for by executive functioning in CVLT-II performance. Executive functioning accounted for minimal variance (0%-10%) in the following CVLT-II indexes: Total Learning (Trials 1-5), Semantic Clustering, Repetitions, Intrusions, and False Positives. However, executive functioning accounted for substantial variance (24%-31%) in CVLT-II performance for both Short- and Long-Delay Recall indexes and most discriminability indexes. CVLT-II indexes that would intuitively be associated with executive functioning accounted for a smaller-than-expected amount of variance. Additionally, level of executive functioning was related to level of CVLT-II performance. These results suggest that clinicians should consider executive deficits when interpreting mild-to-moderate memory impairments in recall and discriminability functions but that executive abilities have little effect on other aspects of memory.

  13. The neural and genetic basis of executive function: attention, cognitive flexibility, and response inhibition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Logue, Sheree F; Gould, Thomas J

    2014-08-01

    Executive function is a collection of cognitive processes essential for higher order mental function. Processes involved in executive function include, but are not limited to, working memory, attention, cognitive flexibility, and impulse control. These complex behaviors are largely mediated by prefrontal cortical function but are modulated by dopaminergic, noradrenergic, serotonergic, and cholinergic input. The ability of these neurotransmitter systems to modulate executive function allows for adaptation in cognitive behavior in response to changes in the environment. Because of the important role these neurotransmitter systems play in regulating executive function, changes in these systems can also have a grave impact on executive function. In addition, polymorphisms in genes associated with these neurotransmitters are associated with phenotypic differences in executive function. Understanding how these naturally occurring polymorphisms contribute to different executive function phenotypes will advance basic knowledge of cognition and potentially further understanding and treatment of mental illness that involve changes in executive function. In this review, we will examine the influence of dopamine, norepinephrine, serotonin, and acetylcholine on the following measures of executive function: attention, cognitive flexibility, and impulse control. We will also review the effects of polymorphisms in genes associated with these neurotransmitter systems on these measures of executive function. © 2013.

  14. The Neural and Genetic Basis of Executive Function: Attention, Cognitive Flexibility, and Response Inhibition

    OpenAIRE

    Logue, Sheree F; Gould, Thomas J.

    2013-01-01

    Executive function is a collection of cognitive processes essential for higher order mental function. Processes involved in executive function include, but are not limited to, working memory, attention, cognitive flexibility, and impulse control. These complex behaviors are largely mediated by prefrontal cortical function but are modulated by dopaminergic, noradrenergic, serotonergic, and cholinergic input. The ability of these neurotransmitter systems to modulate executive function allows fo...

  15. Executive function profiles of pedophilic and nonpedophilic child molesters.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eastvold, Angela; Suchy, Yana; Strassberg, Donald

    2011-03-01

    There is increasing evidence of neurocognitive dysfunction among child molesters, supporting the notion of brain anomalies among pedophiles. However, approximately half of child molesters are not pedophilic (i.e., are not primarily attracted to children), and neurocognitive differences between pedophilic (PED) and nonpedophilic (NPED) child molesters are not well understood. The purpose of this study was to assess neurocognition, specifically executive functioning (EF), among phallometrically defined PED and NPED child molesters, relative to nonsexual offenders (NSO). Participants (N = 89) were compared on seven EF domains. Results revealed that (a) child molesters exhibited an overall executive profile that was different from that of NSOs, with PEDs differing from NSOs but not from NPEDs; (b) child molesters on the whole performed better than NSOs on abstract reasoning and more poorly on inhibition; and (c) PEDs performed better than NPEDs on planning and exhibited better overall performance accuracy relative to NPEDs. These results suggest that PEDs exhibit a more deliberate, planful response style characterized by greater self-monitoring; whereas NPEDs appear to respond more impulsively. The current report further elucidates neurocognition among child molesters and highlights the need for future research examining subtypes of child molesters.

  16. The union of narrative and executive function: different but complementary.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Friend, Margaret; Bates, Raven Phoenix

    2014-01-01

    Oral narrative production develops dramatically from 3 to 5 years of age, and is a key factor in a child's ability to communicate about the world. Concomitant with this are developments in executive function (EF). For example, executive attention and behavioral inhibition show marked development beginning around 4 years of age. Both EF and oral narrative abilities have important implications for academic success, but the relationship between them is not well understood. The present paper utilizes a cross-lagged design to assess convergent and predictive relations between EF and narrative ability. As a collateral measure, we collected a Language Sample during 10 min of free play. Language Sample did not share significant variance with Narrative Production, thus general language growth from Wave 1 to Wave 2 cannot account for the predictive relations between EF and Narrative. Our findings suggest that although EF and Narrative ability appear independent at each Wave, they nevertheless support each other over developmental time. Specifically, the ability to maintain focus at 4 years supports subsequent narrative ability and narrative ability at 4 years supports subsequent facility and speed in learning and implementing new rules.

  17. The union of narrative and executive function: Different but complementary

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Margaret eFriend

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available Oral narrative production develops dramatically from 3 to 5 years of age, and is a key factor in a child’s ability to communicate about the world. Concomitant with this are developments in executive function (EF. For example, executive attention and behavioral inhibition show marked development beginning around 4 years of age. Both EF and oral narrative abilities have important implications for academic success, but the relationship between them is not well understood. The present paper utilizes a cross-lagged design to assess convergent and predictive relations between EF and narrative ability. As a collateral measure, we collected a Language Sample during 10 minutes of free play. Language Sample did not share significant variance with Narrative Production, thus general language growth from Wave 1 to Wave 2 cannot account for the predictive relations between EF and Narrative. Our findings suggest that although EF and Narrative ability appear independent at each wave, they nevertheless support each other over developmental time. Specifically, the ability to maintain focus at 4 years supports subsequent narrative ability and narrative ability at 4 years supports subsequent facility and speed in learning and implementing new rules.  

  18. Executive function and fluid intelligence after frontal lobe lesions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roca, María; Parr, Alice; Thompson, Russell; Woolgar, Alexandra; Torralva, Teresa; Antoun, Nagui; Manes, Facundo

    2010-01-01

    Many tests of specific ‘executive functions’ show deficits after frontal lobe lesions. These deficits appear on a background of reduced fluid intelligence, best measured with tests of novel problem solving. For a range of specific executive tests, we ask how far frontal deficits can be explained by a general fluid intelligence loss. For some widely used tests, e.g. Wisconsin Card Sorting, we find that fluid intelligence entirely explains frontal deficits. When patients and controls are matched on fluid intelligence, no further frontal deficit remains. For these tasks too, deficits are unrelated to lesion location within the frontal lobe. A second group of tasks, including tests of both cognitive (e.g. Hotel, Proverbs) and social (Faux Pas) function, shows a different pattern. Deficits are not fully explained by fluid intelligence and the data suggest association with lesions in the right anterior frontal cortex. Understanding of frontal lobe deficits may be clarified by separating reduced fluid intelligence, important in most or all tasks, from other more specific impairments and their associated regions of damage. PMID:19903732

  19. Pharmacological enhancement of memory and executive functioning in laboratory animals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Floresco, Stan B; Jentsch, James D

    2011-01-01

    Investigating how different pharmacological compounds may enhance learning, memory, and higher-order cognitive functions in laboratory animals is the first critical step toward the development of cognitive enhancers that may be used to ameliorate impairments in these functions in patients suffering from neuropsychiatric disorders. Rather than focus on one aspect of cognition, or class of drug, in this review we provide a broad overview of how distinct classes of pharmacological compounds may enhance different types of memory and executive functioning, particularly those mediated by the prefrontal cortex. These include recognition memory, attention, working memory, and different components of behavioral flexibility. A key emphasis is placed on comparing and contrasting the effects of certain drugs on different cognitive and mnemonic functions, highlighting methodological issues associated with this type of research, tasks used to investigate these functions, and avenues for future research. Viewed collectively, studies of the neuropharmacological basis of cognition in rodents and non-human primates have identified targets that will hopefully open new avenues for the treatment of cognitive disabilities in persons affected by mental disorders.

  20. Intervention for executive functions in attention deficit and hyperactivity disorder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Menezes, Amanda; Dias, Natália Martins; Trevisan, Bruna Tonietti; Carreiro, Luiz Renato R; Seabra, Alessandra Gotuzo

    2015-03-01

    This study aimed to investigate if an executive functions (EF) intervention could promote these skills in individuals with attention deficit and hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Eighteen children and adolescents, 7-13 years old, divided into experimental (EG, N = 8) and control (CG, N = 10) groups, were assessed in the Block Design and Vocabulary subtests of the WISC III and seven tests of EF. Parents answered two scales, measuring EF and inattention and hyperactivity signs. EG children participated in a program to promote EF in twice-weekly group sessions of one hour each. After 8 months of intervention, groups were assessed again. ANCOVA, controlling for age, intelligence quotient and pretest performance, revealed gains in attention/inhibition and auditory working memory measures for the EG. No effect was found for scales or measures of more complex EF. Results are not conclusive, but they illustrate some promising data about EF interventions in children and adolescents with ADHD.

  1. Intervention for executive functions in attention deficit and hyperactivity disorder

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amanda Menezes

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available This study aimed to investigate if an executive functions (EF intervention could promote these skills in individuals with attention deficit and hyperactivity disorder (ADHD. Eighteen children and adolescents, 7-13 years old, divided into experimental (EG, N = 8 and control (CG, N = 10 groups, were assessed in the Block Design and Vocabulary subtests of the WISC III and seven tests of EF. Parents answered two scales, measuring EF and inattention and hyperactivity signs. EG children participated in a program to promote EF in twice-weekly group sessions of one hour each. After 8 months of intervention, groups were assessed again. ANCOVA, controlling for age, intelligence quotient and pretest performance, revealed gains in attention/inhibition and auditory working memory measures for the EG. No effect was found for scales or measures of more complex EF. Results are not conclusive, but they illustrate some promising data about EF interventions in children and adolescents with ADHD.

  2. Motor assessment in pediatric neuropsychology: relationships to executive function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shaheen, Sandra

    2013-01-01

    Executive function often refers to control behaviors such as "initiating," "sustaining," "inhibiting," and "switching." These mechanisms contribute to regulation of thinking and emotion but can be observed most clearly in the motor system. Neuropsychology has been influenced by "top-down" models of cognitive control that emerged from information-processing theories of cognition. In fact, neural models provide evidence that control processes are highly interactive within the cortico-striatal-cerebellar circuits. Cognition unfolds in response to motor-driven adaptation, and evidence exists for similar firing of brain cells and circuits during "imagined action" as in actual motor behavior. The motor system develops early and yet is not routinely assessed in neuropsychological evaluation of children with neurodevelopmental disorders. This article reviews some of the approaches to motor assessment that have sensitivity to neurodevelopmental disorders, and advocates for inclusion of motor assessment, particularly in evaluating control processes independent of culture, language, and other confounders.

  3. Executive function and endocrinological responses to acute resistance exercise

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chia-Liang eTsai

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available This study had the following two aims: First, to explore the effects of acute resistance exercise (RE, i.e., using exercise machines to contract and stretch muscles on behavioral and electrophysiological performance when performing a cognitive task involving executive functioning in young male adults; Second, to investigate the potential biochemical mechanisms of such facilitative effects using two neurotrophic factors [i.e., growth hormone (GH and insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1] and the cortisol levels elicited by such an exercise intervention mode with two different exercise intensities. Sixty young male adults were recruited and randomly assigned to a high-intensity (HI exercise group, moderate-intensity (MI exercise group, and non-exercise-intervention (NEI group. Blood samples were taken, and the behavioral and electrophysiological indices were simultaneously measured when individuals performed a Go/No-Go task combined with the Erikson Flanker paradigm at baseline and after either an acute bout of 30 minutes of moderate- or high-intensity RE or a control period. The results showed that the acute RE could not only benefit the subjects’ behavioral (i.e., RTs and accuracy performance, as found in previous studies, but also increase the P3 amplitude. Although the serum GH and IGF-1 levels were significantly increased via moderate or high intensity RE in both the MI and HI groups, the increased serum levels of neurotrophic factors were significantly decreased about 20 minutes after exercise. In addition, such changes were not correlated with the changes in cognitive (i.e., behavioral and electrophysiological performance. In contrast, the serum levels of cortisol in the HI and MI groups were significantly lower after acute RE, and the changes in cortisol levels were significantly associated with the changes in electrophysiological (i.e., P3 amplitude performance. The findings suggest the beneficial effects of acute RE on executive

  4. Executive functions: performance-based measures and the behavior rating inventory of executive function (BRIEF) in adolescents with attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Toplak, Maggie E; Bucciarelli, Stefania M; Jain, Umesh; Tannock, Rosemary

    2009-01-01

    Performance-based measures and ratings of executive functions were examined in a sample of adolescents with attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and comparison controls. Performance-based measures of executive function included inhibition, working memory, set shifting, and planning, and ratings of these same executive functions were completed by parents and teachers. Adolescents with ADHD demonstrated lower executive function performance than controls and displayed elevated ratings on the executive function ratings by parents and teachers. Significant associations were obtained between the performance-based measures and the parent and teacher ratings, but each measure was not uniquely associated with its respective scale on the rating scales. When performance-based measures and ratings were examined as predictors of ADHD status, the parent and teacher ratings entered as significant predictors of ADHD status. Further commonality analyses indicated that performance-based measures accounted for little unique variance in predicting ADHD status and also displayed little overlap with the behavioral ratings. These findings highlight the diagnostic utility of behavioral ratings of executive function in predicting ADHD status; however, behavioral ratings should not be assumed to be a proxy for performance on measures of executive function in clinical practice.

  5. Executive function in daily life: Age-related influences of executive processes on instrumental activities of daily living.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vaughan, Leslie; Giovanello, Kelly

    2010-06-01

    The present study of older adults used structural equation modeling (SEM) to examine the relationships between 3 executive processes underlying executive function (EF) (inhibition, task switching, updating in working memory), and 2 types of instrumental activities of daily living (IADLs) (self-report, performance based). Experimental tasks of executive attention and self-report or performance-based IADL tests were administered to create latent constructs of EF and IADLs. Confirmatory factor analysis (CFA) was used to examine the construct validity of EF and IADLs. This analysis indicated a 3-factor model of inhibition, updating, and task switching and a 2-factor model of self-report and performance-based IADLs. As predicted, when the latent variable relationships were analyzed, executive processes had a significant relationship with performance-based, but not self-report, IADLs. In addition, task switching had a strong and significant relationship with performance-based IADLs. The results of this study uniquely show a direct relationship between executive processes and performance-based IADLs, thus demonstrating the ecological utility of experimental measures of EF to predict daily function. Furthermore, these results point to areas of cognitive training that may strategically impact older adults' performance on daily life activities.

  6. Longitudinal Associations Between Parental Bonding, Parenting Stress, and Executive Functioning in Toddlerhood

    OpenAIRE

    de Cock, Evi S.A.; Henrichs, Jens; Klimstra, Theo A.|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/304823007; Janneke, A.; Vreeswijk, Charlotte M.J.M.; Meeus, Wim H.J.|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/070442215; van Bakel, Hedwig J. A.

    2017-01-01

    Early executive functioning is an important predictor for future development of children’s cognitive skills and behavioral outcomes. Parenting behavior has proven to be a key environmental determinant of child executive functioning. However, the association of parental affect and cognitions directed to the child with child executive functioning has been understudied. Therefore, in the present study we examine the associations between parental bonding (i.e., the affective tie from parent to ch...

  7. Executive Functioning, Barriers to Adherence, and Nonadherence in Adolescent and Young Adult Transplant Recipients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gutiérrez-Colina, Ana M; Eaton, Cyd K; Lee, Jennifer L; Reed-Knight, Bonney; Loiselle, Kristin; Mee, Laura L; LaMotte, Julia; Liverman, Rochelle; Blount, Ronald L

    2016-08-01

    OBJECTIVE : To evaluate levels of executive functioning in a sample of adolescent and young adult (AYA) transplant recipients, and to examine executive functioning in association with barriers to adherence and medication nonadherence.  METHOD : In all, 41 caregivers and 39 AYAs were administered self- and proxy-report measures.  RESULTS : AYA transplant recipients have significant impairments in executive functioning abilities. Greater dysfunction in specific domains of executive functioning was significantly associated with more barriers to adherence and greater medication nonadherence.  CONCLUSION : AYA transplant recipients are at increased risk for executive dysfunction. The assessment of executive functioning abilities may guide intervention efforts designed to decrease barriers to adherence and promote developmentally appropriate levels of treatment responsibility.

  8. Executive function late effects in survivors of pediatric brain tumors and acute lymphoblastic leukemia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Winter, Amanda L; Conklin, Heather M; Tyc, Vida L; Stancel, Heather; Hinds, Pamela S; Hudson, Melissa M; Kahalley, Lisa S

    2014-01-01

    Survivors of pediatric brain tumors (BT) and acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) are at risk for neurocognitive late effects related to executive function. Survivors of BT (48) and ALL (50) completed neurocognitive assessment. Executive function was compared to estimated IQ and population norms by diagnostic group. Both BT and ALL demonstrated relative executive function weaknesses. As a group, BT survivors demonstrated weaker executive functioning than expected for age. Those BT survivors with deficits exhibited a profile suggestive of global executive dysfunction, while affected ALL survivors tended to demonstrate specific rapid naming deficits. Findings suggest that pediatric BT and ALL survivors may exhibit different profiles of executive function late effects, which may necessitate distinct intervention plans.

  9. Executive function in posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and the influence of comorbid depression.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Olff, Miranda; Polak, A Rosaura; Witteveen, Anke B; Denys, Damiaan

    2014-07-01

    Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) has been associated with neurocognitive deficits, such as impaired verbal memory and executive functioning. Less is known about executive function and the role of comorbid depression in PTSD. Recently, studies have shown that verbal memory impairments may be associated with comorbid depressive symptoms, but their role in executive function impairments is still unclear. To examine several domains of executive functioning in PTSD and the potentially mediating role of comorbid depressive symptoms in the relationship between executive function and PTSD. Executive functioning was assessed in 28 PTSD patients and 28 matched trauma-exposed controls. The Cambridge Neuropsychological Test Automated Battery (CANTAB) with subtests measuring response inhibition (SST), flexibility/set shifting (IED), planning/working memory (OTS) and spatial working memory (SWM) was administered in PTSD patients and trauma-exposed controls. Regression analyses were used to assess the predictive factor of PTSD symptoms (CAPS) and depressive symptoms (HADS-D) in relation to executive function when taking into account the type of trauma. Pearson's correlations were used to examine the association between PTSD symptom clusters (CAPS) and executive function. The mediating effects of depression and PTSD were assessed using regression coefficients and the Sobel's test for mediation. Our findings indicate that PTSD patients performed significantly worse on executive function than trauma-exposed controls in all domains assessed. PTSD symptoms contributed to executive functioning impairments (SST median correct, IED total errors, OTS latency to correct, SWM total errors and SWM strategy). Adding depressive symptoms to the model attenuated these effects. PTSD symptom clusters 'numbing' and to a lesser extent 'avoidance' were more frequently associated with worse executive function (i.e., IED total errors, OTS latency to correct and SWM total errors) than

  10. Balancing Automatic-Controlled Behaviors and Emotional-Salience States: A Dynamic Executive Functioning Hypothesis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kluwe-Schiavon, Bruno; Viola, Thiago W.; Sanvicente-Vieira, Breno; Malloy-Diniz, Leandro F.; Grassi-Oliveira, Rodrigo

    2017-01-01

    Recently, there has been growing interest in understanding how executive functions are conceptualized in psychopathology. Since several models have been proposed, the major issue lies within the definition of executive functioning itself. Theoretical discussions have emerged, narrowing the boundaries between “hot” and “cold” executive functions or between self-regulation and cognitive control. Nevertheless, the definition of executive functions is far from a consensual proposition and it has been suggested that these models might be outdated. Current efforts indicate that human behavior and cognition are by-products of many brain systems operating and interacting at different levels, and therefore, it is very simplistic to assume a dualistic perspective of information processing. Based upon an adaptive perspective, we discuss how executive functions could emerge from the ability to solve immediate problems and to generalize successful strategies, as well as from the ability to synthesize and to classify environmental information in order to predict context and future. We present an executive functioning perspective that emerges from the dynamic balance between automatic-controlled behaviors and an emotional-salience state. According to our perspective, the adaptive role of executive functioning is to automatize efficient solutions simultaneously with cognitive demand, enabling individuals to engage such processes with increasingly complex problems. Understanding executive functioning as a mediator of stress and cognitive engagement not only fosters discussions concerning individual differences, but also offers an important paradigm to understand executive functioning as a continuum process rather than a categorical and multicomponent structure. PMID:28154541

  11. A bidirectional relationship between physical activity and executive function in older adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Daly, Michael; McMinn, David; Allan, Julia L

    2014-01-01

    Physically active lifestyles contribute to better executive function. However, it is unclear whether high levels of executive function lead people to be more active. This study uses a large sample and multi-wave data to identify whether a reciprocal association exists between physical activity and executive function. Participants were 4555 older adults tracked across four waves of the English Longitudinal Study of Aging. In each wave executive function was assessed using a verbal fluency test and a letter cancelation task and participants reported their physical activity levels. Fixed effects regressions showed that changes in executive function corresponded with changes in physical activity. In longitudinal multilevel models low levels of physical activity led to subsequent declines in executive function. Importantly, poor executive function predicted reductions in physical activity over time. This association was found to be over 50% larger in magnitude than the contribution of physical activity to changes in executive function. This is the first study to identify evidence for a robust bidirectional link between executive function and physical activity in a large sample of older adults tracked over time.

  12. Sources of data about children's executive functioning: review and commentary.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Silver, Cheryl H

    2014-01-01

    Accurate measurement of a child's executive functioning (EF) is important for diagnosis, description of functional impairment, and treatment planning. EF assessment typically consists of administration of a battery of performance-based tests involving abilities such as attention, inhibition, reasoning, planning, and mental flexibility. In recent years, observer (e.g., parent) rating scales have been added to the typical EF battery. However, research has revealed that performance-based tests and parent rating scales are not highly correlated. In other words, level of impairment indicated by one source of data often does not match level of impairment indicated by the other source of data. This disagreement places the clinician in a difficult situation when attempting to interpret evaluation results. The profession of pediatric neuropsychology needs to provide guidance about handling this disagreement. Using the current assessment tools, specific EF subdomains may need to be examined systematically to identify precisely where the disagreements lie. Perhaps the relative validity of the two data sources can be determined, and decisions can be made about what to emphasize and what/when to interpret cautiously. Alternatively, perhaps the goal should be to develop and/or refine measurement tools to increase agreement in order to improve accuracy and validity of test interpretation. At this time, the results of performance-based tests and rating scales of EF are being used together but are not being integrated. Evidence-based practice requires that more work be done to enhance the use of these two sources of data.

  13. Sleep and executive functions in older adults: A systematic review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Francisco Wilson Nogueira Holanda Júnior

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT Introduction: A recent increase in studies suggests a role of age-related sleep changes in executive functions (EF. However, this relationship remains unclear and mixed results have emerged. Objective: To investigate how age-related sleep changes may play an important role in the extent to which healthy older adults exhibit decline in EF. Methods: A systematic strategy was employed to identify the available literature on age-related sleep changes and EF. Results: Of the 465 studies identified, 26 were included. Results suggest that multiple sleep parameters differ in the way they benefit or impair EF. Parameters such as greater wake after sleep onset and lower sleep efficiency, in addition to circadian fragmentation of sleep, showed more consistent results and are potentially correlated with worsening in EF measures. However, other results seem inconclusive. Conclusion: These findings were discussed based on the prefrontal circuitry vulnerability model, in which sleep has been identified as a beneficial factor for prefrontal cortex functioning and hence for EF, which relies mostly on this brain area and its related networks.

  14. Executive Function Training for Children with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shuai, Lan; Daley, David; Wang, Yu-Feng; Zhang, Jin-Song; Kong, Yan-Ting; Tan, Xin; Ji, Ning

    2017-01-01

    Background: Accumulating evidence indicates that attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is associated with core deficits in executive function (EF) which predicts poorer academic and occupational functioning. This makes early intervention targeting EF impairments important to prevent long-term negative outcomes. Cognitive training is a potential ADHD treatment target. The present study aimed to explore the efficacy, feasibility, and acceptability of a cognitive training program (targeting child's multiple EF components and involving parent support in daily life), as a nonpharmacological intervention for children with ADHD. Methods: Forty-four school -age children with ADHD and their parents participated in 12 sessions of EF training (last for 12 weeks) and 88 health controls (HC) were also recruited. Training effects were explored using both neuropsychological tests (Stroop color-word test, Rey-Osterrieth complex figure test, trail making test, tower of Hanoi, and false-belief task) and reports of daily life (ADHD rating scale-IV, Conners’ parent rating scale, and behavior rating inventory of executive function [BRIEF]) by analysis of paired sample t-test and Wilcoxon signed-rank test. The differences on EF performances between children with ADHD after training and HC were explored using multivariate analysis. Results: The results (before vs. after EF training) showed that after intervention, the children with ADHD presented better performances of EF both in neuropsychological tests (word interference of Stroop: 36.1 ± 14.6 vs. 27.1 ± 11.1, t = 4.731, P < 0.001; shift time of TMT: 194.9 ± 115.4 vs. 124.8 ± 72.4, Z = –4.639, P < 0.001; false-belief task: χ2 = 6.932, P = 0.008) and reports of daily life (global executive composite of BRIEF: 148.9 ± 17.5 vs. 127.8 ± 17.5, t = 6.433, P < 0.001). The performances on EF tasks for children with ADHD after EF training could match with the level of HC children. The ADHD symptoms (ADHD rating scale total

  15. Individual differences in executive functions are almost entirely genetic in origin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Friedman, Naomi P; Miyake, Akira; Young, Susan E; Defries, John C; Corley, Robin P; Hewitt, John K

    2008-05-01

    Recent psychological and neuropsychological research suggests that executive functions--the cognitive control processes that regulate thought and action--are multifaceted and that different types of executive functions are correlated but separable. The present multivariate twin study of 3 executive functions (inhibiting dominant responses, updating working memory representations, and shifting between task sets), measured as latent variables, examined why people vary in these executive control abilities and why these abilities are correlated but separable from a behavioral genetic perspective. Results indicated that executive functions are correlated because they are influenced by a highly heritable (99%) common factor that goes beyond general intelligence or perceptual speed, and they are separable because of additional genetic influences unique to particular executive functions. This combination of general and specific genetic influences places executive functions among the most heritable psychological traits. These results highlight the potential of genetic approaches for uncovering the biological underpinnings of executive functions and suggest a need for examining multiple types of executive functions to distinguish different levels of genetic influences.

  16. Compensating for Executive Function Impairments after TBI: A Single Case Study of Functional Intervention.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turkstra, Lyn S.; Flora, Tracy L.

    2002-01-01

    Compensatory strategies were designed to enable a client with traumatic brain injury to obtain professional employment. In a series of speech-language therapy sessions, compensatory strategies targeting impairments in executive function were developed, refined, and trained in mock-interview situations. Significant improvements were noted in…

  17. The role of executive functions in social impairment in Autism Spectrum Disorder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leung, Rachel C; Vogan, Vanessa M; Powell, Tamara L; Anagnostou, Evdokia; Taylor, Margot J

    2016-01-01

    Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is a neurodevelopmental disorder characterized by socio-communicative impairments. Executive dysfunction may explain some key characteristics of ASD, both social and nonsocial hallmarks. Limited research exists exploring the relations between executive function and social impairment in ASD and few studies have used a comparison control group. Thus, the objective of the present study was to investigate the relations between executive functioning using the Behavioral Rating Inventory of Executive Functioning (BRIEF), social impairment as measured by the Social Responsiveness Scale (SRS), and overall autistic symptomology as measured by the Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule (ADOS) in children and adolescents with and without ASD. Seventy children and adolescents diagnosed with ASD and 71 typically developing controls were included in this study. Findings showed that behavioral regulation executive processes (i.e., inhibition, shifting, and emotional control) predicted social function in all children. However, metacognitive executive processes (i.e., initiation, working memory, planning, organization, and monitoring) predicted social function only in children with ASD and not in typically developing children. Our findings suggest a distinct metacognitive executive function-social symptom link in ASD that is not present in the typical population. Understanding components of executive functioning that contribute to the autistic symptomology, particularly in the socio-communicative domain, is crucial for developing effective interventions that target key executive processes as well as underlying behavioral symptoms.

  18. Executive functioning in preschoolers with specific language impairment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Constance eVissers

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available The pathogenesis of Specific Language Impairment (SLI is still largely beyond our understanding. In this review, a neuropsychological perspective on language impairments in SLI is taken, focusing specifically on executive functioning (EF in preschoolers (age range: 2.6-6.1 years with SLI. Based on the studies described in this review, it can be concluded that similar to school-aged children with SLI, preschoolers with SLI show difficulties in working memory, inhibition and shifting, as revealed by both performance based measures and behavioural ratings. It seems plausible that a complex, reciprocal relationship exists between language and EF throughout development. Future research is needed to examine if, and if yes how, language and EF interact in SLI. Broad neuropsychological assessment in which both language and EF are taken into account may contribute to early detection of SLI. This in turn can lead to early and tailored treatment of children with (suspected SLI aimed not only at stimulating language development but also at strengthening EF.

  19. Automated respiratory sinus arrhythmia measurement: Demonstration using executive function assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hegarty-Craver, Meghan; Gilchrist, Kristin H; Propper, Cathi B; Lewis, Gregory F; DeFilipp, Samuel J; Coffman, Jennifer L; Willoughby, Michael T

    2017-08-08

    Respiratory sinus arrhythmia (RSA) is a quantitative metric that reflects autonomic nervous system regulation and provides a physiological marker of attentional engagement that supports cognitive and affective regulatory processes. RSA can be added to executive function (EF) assessments with minimal participant burden because of the commercial availability of lightweight, wearable electrocardiogram (ECG) sensors. However, the inclusion of RSA data in large data collection efforts has been hindered by the time-intensive processing of RSA. In this study we evaluated the performance of an automated RSA-scoring method in the context of an EF study in preschool-aged children. The absolute differences in RSA across both scoring methods were small (mean RSA differences = -0.02-0.10), with little to no evidence of bias for the automated relative to the hand-scoring approach. Moreover, the relative rank-ordering of RSA across both scoring methods was strong (rs = .96-.99). Reliable changes in RSA from baseline to the EF task were highly similar across both scoring methods (96%-100% absolute agreement; Kappa = .83-1.0). On the basis of these findings, the automated RSA algorithm appears to be a suitable substitute for hand-scoring in the context of EF assessment.

  20. Strong genetic overlap between executive functions and intelligence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Engelhardt, Laura E; Mann, Frank D; Briley, Daniel A; Church, Jessica A; Harden, K Paige; Tucker-Drob, Elliot M

    2016-09-01

    Executive functions (EFs) are cognitive processes that control, monitor, and coordinate more basic cognitive processes. EFs play instrumental roles in models of complex reasoning, learning, and decision making, and individual differences in EFs have been consistently linked with individual differences in intelligence. By middle childhood, genetic factors account for a moderate proportion of the variance in intelligence, and these effects increase in magnitude through adolescence. Genetic influences on EFs are very high, even in middle childhood, but the extent to which these genetic influences overlap with those on intelligence is unclear. We examined genetic and environmental overlap between EFs and intelligence in a racially and socioeconomically diverse sample of 811 twins ages 7 to 15 years (M = 10.91, SD = 1.74) from the Texas Twin Project. A general EF factor representing variance common to inhibition, switching, working memory, and updating domains accounted for substantial proportions of variance in intelligence, primarily via a genetic pathway. General EF continued to have a strong, genetically mediated association with intelligence even after controlling for processing speed. Residual variation in general intelligence was influenced only by shared and nonshared environmental factors, and there remained no genetic variance in general intelligence that was unique of EF. Genetic variance independent of EF did remain, however, in a more specific perceptual reasoning ability. These results provide evidence that genetic influences on general intelligence are highly overlapping with those on EF. (PsycINFO Database Record

  1. Atlas-based diffusion tensor imaging correlates of executive function

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nowrangi, Milap A.; Okonkwo, Ozioma; Lyketsos, Constantine; Oishi, Kenichi; Mori, Susumu; Albert, Marilyn; Mielke, Michelle M.

    2015-01-01

    Impairment in executive function (EF) is commonly found in Alzheimer’s Dementia (AD) and Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI). Atlas-based Diffusion Tensor Imaging (DTI) methods may be useful in relating regional integrity to EF measures in MCI and AD. 66 participants (25 NC, 22 MCI, and 19 AD) received DTI scans and clinical evaluation. DTI scans were applied to a pre-segmented atlas and fractional anisotropy (FA) and mean diffusivity (MD) were calculated. ANOVA was used to assess group differences in frontal, parietal, and cerebellar regions. For regions differing between groups (p<0.01), linear regression examined the relationship between EF scores and regional FA and MD. Anisotropy and diffusivity in frontal and parietal lobe white matter (WM) structures were associated with EF scores in MCI and only frontal lobe structures in AD. EF was more strongly associated with FA than MD. The relationship between EF and anisotropy and diffusivity was strongest in MCI. These results suggest that regional WM integrity is compromised in MCI and AD and that FA may be a better correlate of EF than MD. PMID:25318544

  2. Executive function and suicidality: a systematic qualitative review

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bredemeier, Keith; Miller, Ivan W.

    2015-01-01

    Deficits in executive function (EF) have been proposed as a possible explanation for the “cognitive rigidity” often observed in suicidal individuals. This article provides a systematic review of the existing literature testing relations between EF and suicidality, across various diagnostic and demographic populations, using the influential multidimensional model of EF proposed by Miyake and colleagues (2000) as an organizing framework. Forty-three journal articles on this topic published before January of 2014 were reviewed. Collectively, results from these studies provide tentative support for an association between EF deficits and suicidality. However, there is some evidence that this association is moderated other factors (e.g., suicide attempt lethality). Importantly, this relationship may vary across diagnostic groups. Specifically, more studies that used depressive disorder samples reported some positive findings (75%), followed by mixed diagnostic samples (54%). In contrast, fewer positive findings have emerged from studies with bipolar or psychotic disorder samples (29% and 33% respectively), and some even found that suicidality is associated with better EF in individuals with psychotic disorders. Firm conclusions about relationships between specific dimensions of EF and/or aspects of suicidality are difficult to draw this time. Limitations of the existing literature and corresponding directions for future research are discussed. PMID:26135816

  3. Structure of executive functions in typically developing kindergarteners.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Monette, Sébastien; Bigras, Marc; Lafrenière, Marc-André

    2015-12-01

    Whereas studies of the past 10 years have shown the executive functions (EFs) in adults to be differentiated into at least three principal components (working memory, inhibition, and flexibility), EF structure in children is far less well understood despite a large body of research on the subject. A study was undertaken to test different structural models of EFs through confirmatory factor analysis (CFA) on a large sample of typically developing kindergarteners (N = 272). The method employed sought to remedy the shortcomings of past research in this field such as absence of CFA, insufficient number of EF components tested, insufficient number of indicators per latent variable, and absence of control on processing speed. Children were assessed using a battery of EF tasks developed by the researchers to measure working memory (WM), flexibility, and inhibition (backward word span, backward block span, fruit Stroop, day-night test, hand Stroop, Trails-P, card sort, face sort, and verbal fluency shift). CFA results show the best-fitting model to comprise two factors, namely, an inhibition factor and a WM-flexibility factor. Invariance analyses suggest that this structure is the same for girls and boys and that latent variable means do not differ by sex. These results support the hypothesis of EF differentiation during development. The researchers formulate other hypotheses regarding neurophysiological development.

  4. Heterogeneity of executive functions among comorbid neurodevelopmental disorders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dajani, Dina R; Llabre, Maria M; Nebel, Mary Beth; Mostofsky, Stewart H; Uddin, Lucina Q

    2016-11-09

    Executive functions (EFs) are used to set goals, plan for the future, inhibit maladaptive responses, and change behavior flexibly. Although some studies point to specific EF profiles in autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) - prevalent and often highly comorbid neurodevelopmental disorders - others have not differentiated them. The objective of the current study was to identify distinct profiles of EF across typically developing (TD) children and children with ASD and ADHD. We employed a latent profile analysis using indicators of EF (e.g., working memory, inhibition, and flexibility) in a mixed group of 8-13 year-olds including TD children (n = 128), children with ASD without ADHD (n = 30), children with ADHD (n = 93), and children with comorbid ASD and ADHD (n = 66). Three EF classes emerged: "above average," "average," and "impaired." EF classes did not reproduce diagnostic categories, suggesting that differences in EF abilities are present within the ASD and ADHD groups. Further, greater EF dysfunction predicted more severe socioemotional problems, such as anxiety/depression. These results highlight the heterogeneity of current diagnostic groups and identify an "impaired" EF group, consisting of children with both ASD and ADHD, which could specifically be targeted for EF intervention.

  5. Activities and Programs That Improve Children's Executive Functions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Diamond, Adele

    2012-10-01

    Executive functions (EFs; e.g., reasoning, working memory, and self-control) can be improved. Good news indeed, since EFs are critical for school and job success and for mental and physical health. Various activities appear to improve children's EFs. The best evidence exists for computer-based training, traditional martial arts, and two school curricula. Weaker evidence, though strong enough to pass peer review, exists for aerobics, yoga, mindfulness, and other school curricula. Here I address what can be learned from the research thus far, including that EFs need to be progressively challenged as children improve and that repeated practice is key. Children devote time and effort to activities they love; therefore, EF interventions might use children's motivation to advantage. Focusing narrowly on EFs or aerobic activity alone appears not to be as efficacious in improving EFs as also addressing children's emotional, social, and character development (as do martial arts, yoga, and curricula shown to improve EFs). Children with poorer EFs benefit more from training; hence, training might provide them an opportunity to "catch up" with their peers and not be left behind. Remaining questions include how long benefits of EF training last and who benefits most from which activities.

  6. Functional neuroanatomy of executive function after neonatal brain injury in adults who were born very preterm.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anastasia K Kalpakidou

    Full Text Available Individuals who were born very preterm (VPT; <33 gestational weeks are at risk of experiencing deficits in tasks involving executive function in childhood and beyond. In addition, the type and severity of neonatal brain injury associated with very preterm birth may exert differential effects on executive functioning by altering its neuroanatomical substrates. Here we addressed this question by investigating with functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI the haemodynamic response during executive-type processing using a phonological verbal fluency and a working memory task in VPT-born young adults who had experienced differing degrees of neonatal brain injury. 12 VPT individuals with a history of periventricular haemorrhage and ventricular dilatation (PVH+VD, 17 VPT individuals with a history of uncomplicated periventricular haemorrhage (UPVH, 13 VPT individuals with no history of neonatal brain injury and 17 controls received an MRI scan whilst completing a verbal fluency task with two cognitive loads ('easy' and 'hard' letters. Two groups of VPT individuals (PVH+VD; n = 10, UPVH; n = 8 performed an n-back task with three cognitive loads (1-, 2-, 3-back. Results demonstrated that VPT individuals displayed hyperactivation in frontal, temporal, and parietal cortices and in caudate nucleus, insula and thalamus compared to controls, as demands of the verbal fluency task increased, regardless of type of neonatal brain injury. On the other hand, during the n-back task and as working memory load increased, the PVH+VD group showed less engagement of the frontal cortex than the UPVH group. In conclusion, this study suggests that the functional neuroanatomy of different executive-type processes is altered following VPT birth and that neural activation associated with specific aspects of executive function (i.e., working memory may be particularly sensitive to the extent of neonatal brain injury.

  7. Disordered cortical connectivity underlies the executive function deficits in children with autism spectrum disorders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Han, Yvonne M Y; Chan, Agnes S

    2017-02-01

    The present study examined the executive function and cortical connectivity of children with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) and investigated whether the executive function deficits exhibited by these children were differentially affected and associated with the cortical connectivity. The present study compared high-functioning (HFA) and low-functioning (LFA) children with typically developing children (TDC) on their executive functions as measured by the Hong Kong List Learning Test, D2 Test of Concentration, Five Point Test, Children's Color Trail Test, Tower of California Test, and Go/No-Go task and neural connectivity as measured by theta coherence in the distributed fronto-parietal network. Thirty-eight children with ASD (19 HFA and 19 LFA) and 28 TDC children, aged 8-17 years, participated voluntarily in the study. The results on executive function showed that the LFA group demonstrated the poorest performance as exhibited by their Executive Composite and individual executive function scores, while the TDC group exhibited the highest. These results have extended the findings of previous studies in demonstrating that HFA and LFA children have significant differences in their degree of executive function deficits. The results on neural connectivity also showed that children with ASD demonstrated a different pattern of electroencephalography (EEG) coherence from TDC children, as demonstrated by the significantly elevated theta coherence in the fronto-parietal network, and that the severity of executive dysfunction between high- and low-functioning children with ASD was found to be associated with the disordered neural connectivity in these children.

  8. The interactive effect of social pain and executive functioning on aggression: an fMRI experiment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chester, David S; Eisenberger, Naomi I; Pond, Richard S; Richman, Stephanie B; Bushman, Brad J; Dewall, C Nathan

    2014-05-01

    Social rejection often increases aggression, but the neural mechanisms underlying this effect remain unclear. This experiment tested whether neural activity in the dorsal anterior cingulate cortex (dACC) and anterior insula in response to social rejection predicted greater subsequent aggression. Additionally, it tested whether executive functioning moderated this relationship. Participants completed a behavioral measure of executive functioning, experienced social rejection while undergoing functional magnetic resonance imaging and then completed a task in which they could aggress against a person who rejected them using noise blasts . We found that dACC activation and executive functioning interacted to predict aggression. Specifically, participants with low executive functioning showed a positive association between dACC activation and aggression, whereas individuals with high executive functioning showed a negative association. Similar results were found for the left anterior insula. These findings suggest that social pain can increase or decrease aggression, depending on an individual's regulatory capability.

  9. Executive function and fluid intelligence after frontal lobe lesions

    OpenAIRE

    Roca, María; Parr, Alice; Thompson, Russell; Woolgar, Alexandra; Torralva, Teresa; Antoun, Nagui; Manes, Facundo; Duncan, John

    2009-01-01

    Many tests of specific ‘executive functions’ show deficits after frontal lobe lesions. These deficits appear on a background of reduced fluid intelligence, best measured with tests of novel problem solving. For a range of specific executive tests, we ask how far frontal deficits can be explained by a general fluid intelligence loss. For some widely used tests, e.g. Wisconsin Card Sorting, we find that fluid intelligence entirely explains frontal deficits. When patients and controls are matche...

  10. Executive Function and Food Approach Behavior in Middle Childhood

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Karoline eGroppe

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available Executive function (EF has long been considered to be a unitary, domain-general cognitive ability. However, recent research suggests differentiating ‘hot’ affective and ‘cool’ cognitive aspects of EF. Yet, findings regarding this two-factor construct are still inconsistent. In particular, the development of this factor structure remains unclear and data on school-aged children is lacking. Furthermore, studies linking EF and overweight or obesity suggest that EF contributes to the regulation of eating behavior. So far, however, the links between EF and eating behavior have rarely been investigated in children and non-clinical populations.First, we examined whether EF can be divided into hot and cool factors or whether they actually correspond to a unitary construct in middle childhood. Second, we examined how hot and cool EF are associated with different eating styles that put children at risk of becoming overweight during development. Hot and cool EF were assessed experimentally in a non-clinical population of 1,657 elementary-school children (aged 6-11 years. The ‘food approach’ behavior was rated mainly via parent questionnaires.Findings indicate that hot EF is distinguishable from cool EF. However, only cool EF seems to represent a coherent functional entity, whereas hot EF does not seem to be a homogenous construct. This was true for a younger and an older subgroup of children. Furthermore, different EF components were correlated with eating styles, such as responsiveness to food, desire to drink, and restrained eating in girls but not in boys. This shows that lower levels of EF are not only seen in clinical populations of obese patients but are already associated with food approach styles in a normal population of elementary school-aged girls. Although the direction of effect still has to be clarified, results point to the possibility that EF constitutes a risk factor for eating styles contributing to the development of

  11. Executive function and food approach behavior in middle childhood.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Groppe, Karoline; Elsner, Birgit

    2014-01-01

    Executive function (EF) has long been considered to be a unitary, domain-general cognitive ability. However, recent research suggests differentiating "hot" affective and "cool" cognitive aspects of EF. Yet, findings regarding this two-factor construct are still inconsistent. In particular, the development of this factor structure remains unclear and data on school-aged children is lacking. Furthermore, studies linking EF and overweight or obesity suggest that EF contributes to the regulation of eating behavior. So far, however, the links between EF and eating behavior have rarely been investigated in children and non-clinical populations. First, we examined whether EF can be divided into hot and cool factors or whether they actually correspond to a unitary construct in middle childhood. Second, we examined how hot and cool EF are associated with different eating styles that put children at risk of becoming overweight during development. Hot and cool EF were assessed experimentally in a non-clinical population of 1657 elementary-school children (aged 6-11 years). The "food approach" behavior was rated mainly via parent questionnaires. Findings indicate that hot EF is distinguishable from cool EF. However, only cool EF seems to represent a coherent functional entity, whereas hot EF does not seem to be a homogenous construct. This was true for a younger and an older subgroup of children. Furthermore, different EF components were correlated with eating styles, such as responsiveness to food, desire to drink, and restrained eating in girls but not in boys. This shows that lower levels of EF are not only seen in clinical populations of obese patients but are already associated with food approach styles in a normal population of elementary school-aged girls. Although the direction of effect still has to be clarified, results point to the possibility that EF constitutes a risk factor for eating styles contributing to the development of overweight in the long-term.

  12. Executive Function Differences between Bilingual ArabicEnglish and Monolingual Arabic Children

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abdelgafar, Ghada Mohammed; Moawad, Ruba AbdelMatloub

    2015-01-01

    This study aimed to explore the differences between Arabic-English bilingual and monolingual Arabic children on a battery of executive functions. Prior research on the influence of bilingualism on cognitive abilities and executive functions has shown mixed results. Some results suggested that bilinguals perform significantly better than…

  13. Alternative Measurement Paradigms for Measuring Executive Functions: SEM (Formative and Reflective Models) and IRT (Rasch Models)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Engelhard, George, Jr.; Wang, Jue

    2014-01-01

    The authors of the Focus article pose important questions regarding whether or not performance-based tasks related to executive functioning are best viewed as reflective or formative indicators. Miyake and Friedman (2012) define executive functioning (EF) as "a set of general-purpose control mechanisms, often linked to the prefrontal cortex…

  14. Profiles of Everyday Executive Functioning in Young Children with Down Syndrome

    Science.gov (United States)

    Daunhauer, Lisa A.; Fidler, Deborah J.; Hahn, Laura; Will, Elizabeth; Lee, Nancy Raitano; Hepburn, Susan

    2014-01-01

    We investigated executive functioning (EF) in children with Down syndrome (DS; n = 25) and typically developing (TD) children matched for mental age (MA; n = 23) using the Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function-Preschool. We sought to (1) compare children with DS to a developmentally matched control group, and (2) to characterize the EF…

  15. The Influence of Family Factors on the Executive Functioning of Adult Children of Alcoholics in College

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schroeder, Valarie M.; Kelley, Michelle L.

    2008-01-01

    This study examined executive functioning in college aged adult children of alcoholics (ACOAs; n = 84) and non-ACOAs (188). We examined whether characteristics of the family environment and family responsibility in one's family of origin were associated with executive functioning above the contribution of ACOA status. ACOAs reported more…

  16. Weaknesses in executive functioning predict the initiating of adolescents’ alcohol use.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Peeters, Margot; Janssen, T.; Monshouwer, Karin; Boendermaker, Wouter; Pronk, Thomas; Wiers, Reinout; Vollebergh, Wilma

    2015-01-01

    Recently, it has been suggested that impairments in executive functioning might be risk factors for the onset of alcohol use rather than a result of heavy alcohol use. In the present study, we examined whether two aspects of executive functioning, working memory and response inhibition, predicted th

  17. Mobile Innovations, Executive Functions, and Educational Developments in Conflict Zones: A Case Study from Palestine

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buckner, Elizabeth; Kim, Paul

    2012-01-01

    Prior research suggests that exposure to conflict can negatively impact the development of executive functioning, which in turn can affect academic performance. Recognizing the need to better understand the potentially widespread executive function deficiencies among Palestinian students and to help develop educational resources targeted to youth…

  18. Verbal Ability and Executive Functioning Development in Preschoolers at Head Start

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fuhs, Mary Wagner; Day, Jeanne D.

    2011-01-01

    Research suggests that executive functioning skills may enhance the school readiness of children from disadvantaged homes. Questions remain, however, concerning both the structure and the stability of executive functioning among preschoolers. In addition, there is a lack of research addressing potential predictors of longitudinal change in…

  19. Assessment of Executive Functions in Prader-Willi Syndrome and Relationship with Intellectual Level

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chevalere, J.; Postal, V.; Jauregui, J.; Copet, P.; Laurier, V.; Thuilleaux, D.

    2013-01-01

    Introduction: The aim of the present study was to determine whether individuals with Prader--Willi syndrome (PWS) have impaired global executive functioning and whether this deficit is linked with intellectual disability. Another objective focussed on the variability in performance of intellectual quotient (IQ) and executive functions (EF)…

  20. The Contribution of Executive Functions to Narrative Writing in Fourth Grade Children

    Science.gov (United States)

    Drijbooms, Elise; Groen, Margriet A.; Verhoeven, Ludo

    2015-01-01

    The present study investigated the contribution of executive functions to narrative writing in fourth grade children, and evaluated to what extent executive functions contribute differentially to different levels of narrative composition. The written skills of 102 Dutch children in fourth grade were assessed using a narrative picture-elicitation…

  1. Longitudinal Associations Between Parental Bonding, Parenting Stress, and Executive Functioning in Toddlerhood

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    de Cock, Evi S.A.; Henrichs, Jens; Klimstra, Theo A.|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/304823007; Janneke, A.; Vreeswijk, Charlotte M.J.M.; Meeus, Wim H.J.|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/070442215; van Bakel, Hedwig J.A.

    2017-01-01

    Early executive functioning is an important predictor for future development of children’s cognitive skills and behavioral outcomes. Parenting behavior has proven to be a key environmental determinant of child executive functioning. However, the association of parental affect and cognitions directed

  2. Insights from Cognitive Neuroscience: The Importance of Executive Function for Early Reading Development and Education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cartwright, Kelly B.

    2012-01-01

    Research Findings: Executive function begins to develop in infancy and involves an array of processes, such as attention, inhibition, working memory, and cognitive flexibility, which provide the means by which individuals control their own behavior, work toward goals, and manage complex cognitive processes. Thus, executive function plays a…

  3. The Role of Executive Functions in Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder: Testing Predictions from Two Models

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Donghyung; Riccio, Cynthia A.; Hynd, George W.

    2004-01-01

    The role of executive functions in attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) varies considerably depending on the models of ADHD. We examined the interrelationship of two major executive functions (i.e., inhibition and working memory) with behavioral, emotional, and school problems in a group of children who had a comprehensive…

  4. Response-Time Variability Is Related to Parent Ratings of Inattention, Hyperactivity, and Executive Function

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gomez-Guerrero, Lorena; Martin, Cristina Dominguez; Mairena, Maria Angeles; Di Martino, Adriana; Wang, Jing; Mendelsohn, Alan L.; Dreyer, Benard P.; Isquith, Peter K.; Gioia, Gerard; Petkova, Eva; Castellanos, F. Xavier

    2011-01-01

    Objective: Individuals with ADHD are often characterized as inconsistent across many contexts. ADHD is also associated with deficits in executive function. We examined the relationships between response time (RT) variability on five brief computer tasks to parents' ratings of ADHD-related features and executive function in a group of children with…

  5. Executive Functions as Endophenotypes in ADHD: Evidence from the Cambridge Neuropsychological Test Battery (CANTAB)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gau, Susan Shur-Fen; Shang, Chi-Yung

    2010-01-01

    Background: Little is known about executive functions among unaffected siblings of children with attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), and there is lack of such information from non-Western countries. We examined verbal and nonverbal executive functions in adolescents with ADHD, unaffected siblings and controls to test whether executive…

  6. Self-Regulation and Inhibition in Comorbid ADHD Children: An Evaluation of Executive Functions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sarkis, Stephanie Moulton; Sarkis, Elias H.; Marshall, David; Archer, James

    2005-01-01

    The relationship between executive function and comorbid diagnoses in ADHD children is examined. One hundred six children between 7 and 15 years of age are assessed using the Tower of London (TOL), a test of executive function, and the Kiddie Schedule of Affective Disorders and Schizophrenia, Present and Lifetime Version, a diagnostic interview.…

  7. Executive Functions and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder: Implications of Two Conflicting Views

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brown, Thomas E.

    2006-01-01

    While increasing numbers of articles and books refer to Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) as a disorder of "executive function" of the mind, two conflicting views have emerged about how ADHD and executive function are related. In one view it is argued that some, but not all, who meet the fourth edition of the "Diagnostic and…

  8. Family Environment and Parent-Child Relationships as Related to Executive Functioning in Children

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schroeder, Valarie M.; Kelley, Michelle L.

    2010-01-01

    The present study examines the associations between family environment, parenting practices and executive functions in normally developing children. One hundred parents of children between the ages of 5 and 12 completed the Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Functions from the Family Environment Scale and the Parent-Child Relationship…

  9. The contribution of executive functions to narrative writing in fourth grade children

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Drijbooms, E.; Groen, M.A.; Verhoeven, L.T.W.

    2015-01-01

    The present study investigated the contribution of executive functions to narrative writing in fourth grade children, and evaluated to what extent executive functions contribute differentially to different levels of narrative composition. The written skills of 102 Dutch children in fourth grade were

  10. Executive Function and Behavioral Problems in Students with Visual Impairments at Mainstream and Special Schools

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heyl, Vera; Hintermair, Manfred

    2015-01-01

    Introduction: In this study, executive function of school-aged children with visual impairments (that is, those who are blind or have low vision) is examined in the context of behavioral problems and communicative competence. Methods: Teachers assessed the executive function of a sample of 226 visually impaired students from mainstream schools and…

  11. The Development of Executive Functions and Early Mathematics: A Dynamic Relationship

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van der Ven, Sanne H. G.; Kroesbergen, Evelyn H.; Boom, Jan; Leseman, Paul P. M.

    2012-01-01

    Background: The relationship between executive functions and mathematical skills has been studied extensively, but results are inconclusive, and how this relationship evolves longitudinally is largely unknown. Aim: The aim was to investigate the factor structure of executive functions in inhibition, shifting, and updating; the longitudinal…

  12. Test Review: Delis, D. (2012) "Delis Rating of Executive Function (D-REF)." Bloomington, Minnesota: Pearson

    Science.gov (United States)

    Warnick, Brittany; Drake, Morgan; Vidrine, Stephanie

    2015-01-01

    The Delis Rating of Executive Function (D-REF) is a set of rating scales designed to assess executive functions and their constituent sub-processes in children and adolescents between the ages of 5 and 18. More specifically, the D-REF is a supplemental assessment of children and adolescents demonstrating behavioral or cognitive difficulties often…

  13. How Socioeconomic Status, Executive Functioning and Verbal Interactions Contribute to Early Academic Achievement in Chinese Children

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chung, Kevin K. H.; Liu, Hongyun; McBride, Catherine; Wong, Anita M. -Y.; Lo, Jason C. M.

    2017-01-01

    The present study investigated the relative importance of executive functioning, parent-child verbal interactions, phonological awareness and visual skills on reading and mathematics for Chinese children from low-versus middle-socio economic status (SES) backgrounds. A total of 199 kindergarten children were assessed on executive functioning,…

  14. The contribution of executive functions to narrative writing in fourth grade children

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Drijbooms, E.; Groen, M.A.; Verhoeven, L.T.W.

    2015-01-01

    The present study investigated the contribution of executive functions to narrative writing in fourth grade children, and evaluated to what extent executive functions contribute differentially to different levels of narrative composition. The written skills of 102 Dutch children in fourth grade were

  15. Executive Functions Are Associated With Gait and Balance in Community-Living Elderly People

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Iersel, M.B. van; Kessels, R.P.C.; Bloem, B.R.; Verbeek, A.L.M.; Olde Rikkert, M.G.M.

    2008-01-01

    Background. Cognition influences gait and balance in elderly people. Executive functions seem to play a key role in this mechanism. Previous studies used only a single test to probe executive functions, and outcome measures were restricted to gait variables. We extend this prior work by examining

  16. Executive functions and cognitive subprocesses in patients with obstructive sleep apnoea

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    S. Lis (Stefanie); S. Krieger (Stephan); D. Hennig (Dorothee); C.H. Röder (Christian); P. Kirsch (Peter); W. Seeger (Werner); B. Gallhofer (Bernd); R. Schulz (Richard)

    2008-01-01

    textabstractIn recent years, special interest has been focused on impairments of executive functions in patients with obstructive sleep apnoea syndrome (OSAS). However, the majority of studies have not clearly separated deficits in executive functions from impairments in other cognitive processes in

  17. Executive Functioning in Children with ASD : An Analysis of the BRIEF

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Blijd-Hoogewys, E. M. A.; Bezemer, M. L.; van Geert, P. L. C.

    2014-01-01

    The Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Functions (BRIEF) screens for executive function deficits in 5- to 18-year-olds. Data of three autism subgroups, according to DSM-IV-TR criteria (N = 35 Autistic Disorder, N = 27 Asperger's Disorder and N = 65 PDD-NOS), were analyzed. The total group has el

  18. Diagnostic utility of the Key Search Test as a measure of executive functions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Oosterman, J.M.; Molenveld, M.; Olde Rikkert, M.G.M.; Kessels, R.P.C.

    2010-01-01

    Background: Executive function deficits are commonly observed in many clinical populations, highlighting the importance of appropriate diagnostic tools to screen for these deficits. Most neuropsychological tests of executive function, however, are time-consuming and difficult to administer in the ca

  19. Diagnostic utility of the Key Search Test as a measure of executive functions.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Oosterman, J.M.; Molenveld, M.; Olde Rikkert, M.G.M.; Kessels, R.P.C.

    2010-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Executive function deficits are commonly observed in many clinical populations, highlighting the importance of appropriate diagnostic tools to screen for these deficits. Most neuropsychological tests of executive function, however, are time-consuming and difficult to administer in the ca

  20. Brief Report: Examining Executive and Social Functioning in Elementary-Aged Children with Autism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Freeman, Laura MacMullen; Locke, Jill; Rotheram-Fuller, Erin; Mandell, David

    2017-01-01

    There is a paucity of literature examining the relationship between executive and social functioning in children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Twenty-three school-aged children with ASD participated. Executive functioning was measured using the Developmental Neuropsychological Assessment, Second Edition and Differential Ability Scales,…

  1. Executive Function and Reading Aptitude: A Grounded Theory Analysis of Teacher Perspectives

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nordman, Jenny

    2013-01-01

    This qualitative, grounded theory study investigated teacher perspectives on the relationship between executive function and reading aptitude. The influence of executive function may be underestimated in terms of its impact on reading aptitude, which could have significant implications on how reading aptitude is currently defined. The foundational…

  2. Evidence for Causal Relations between Executive Functions and Alphabetic Skills Based on Longitudinal Data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kegel, Cornelia A. T.; Bus, Adriana G.

    2014-01-01

    Children showing poor executive functioning may not fully benefit from learning experiences at home and school and may lag behind in literacy skills. This hypothesis was tested in a sample of 276 kindergarten children. Executive functions and literacy skills were tested at about 61?months and again a year later. In line with earlier studies,…

  3. Life History Theory and Social Deviance: The Mediating Role of Executive Function

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wenner, C. J.; Bianchi, J.; Figueredo, A. J.; Rushton, J. Philippe; Jacobs, W. J.

    2013-01-01

    The present work examined predicted relations among Life History strategies, Executive Functions, socially antagonistic attitudes, socially antagonistic behaviors, and general intelligence. Life History (LH) theory predicts that Executive Functions and socially antagonistic attitudes and behaviors underpin an interrelated and coherent set of…

  4. Effects of Physical Activity on Children's Executive Function: Contributions of Experimental Research on Aerobic Exercise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Best, John R.

    2010-01-01

    Executive function refers to the cognitive processes necessary for goal-directed cognition and behavior, which develop across childhood and adolescence. Recent experimental research indicates that both acute and chronic aerobic exercise promote children's executive function. Furthermore, there is tentative evidence that not all forms of aerobic…

  5. Executive Function and Reading Aptitude: A Grounded Theory Analysis of Teacher Perspectives

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nordman, Jenny

    2013-01-01

    This qualitative, grounded theory study investigated teacher perspectives on the relationship between executive function and reading aptitude. The influence of executive function may be underestimated in terms of its impact on reading aptitude, which could have significant implications on how reading aptitude is currently defined. The foundational…

  6. Executive Function Differences between Bilingual ArabicEnglish and Monolingual Arabic Children

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abdelgafar, Ghada Mohammed; Moawad, Ruba AbdelMatloub

    2015-01-01

    This study aimed to explore the differences between Arabic-English bilingual and monolingual Arabic children on a battery of executive functions. Prior research on the influence of bilingualism on cognitive abilities and executive functions has shown mixed results. Some results suggested that bilinguals perform significantly better than…

  7. Seeing conflict and engaging control: Experience with contrastive language benefits executive function in preschoolers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Doebel, Sabine; Zelazo, Philip David

    2016-12-01

    Engaging executive function often requires overriding a prepotent response in favor of a conflicting but adaptive one. Language may play a key role in this ability by supporting integrated representations of conflicting rules. We tested whether experience with contrastive language that could support such representations benefits executive function in 3-year-old children. Children who received brief experience with language highlighting contrast between objects, attributes, and actions showed greater executive function on two of three 'conflict' executive function tasks than children who received experience with contrasting stimuli only and children who read storybooks with the experimenter, controlling for baseline executive function. Experience with contrasting stimuli did not benefit executive function relative to reading books with the experimenter, indicating experience with contrastive language, rather than experience with contrast generally, was key. Experience with contrastive language also boosted spontaneous attention to contrast, consistent with improvements in representing contrast. These findings indicate a role for language in executive function that is consistent with the Cognitive Complexity and Control theory's key claim that coordinating conflicting rules is critical to overcoming perseveration, and suggest new ideas for testing theories of executive function. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  8. The Contribution of Executive Functions to Narrative Writing in Fourth Grade Children

    Science.gov (United States)

    Drijbooms, Elise; Groen, Margriet A.; Verhoeven, Ludo

    2015-01-01

    The present study investigated the contribution of executive functions to narrative writing in fourth grade children, and evaluated to what extent executive functions contribute differentially to different levels of narrative composition. The written skills of 102 Dutch children in fourth grade were assessed using a narrative picture-elicitation…

  9. The Relationship between Media Multitasking and Executive Function in Early Adolescents

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baumgartner, Susanne E.; Weeda, Wouter D.; van der Heijden, Lisa L.; Huizinga, Mariëtte

    2014-01-01

    The increasing prevalence of media multitasking among adolescents is concerning because it may be negatively related to goal-directed behavior. This study investigated the relationship between media multitasking and executive function in 523 early adolescents (aged 11-15; 48% girls). The three central components of executive functions (i.e.,…

  10. Executive function in posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and the influence of comorbid depression

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Olff, Miranda; Polak, A Rosaura; Witteveen, Anke B; Denys, D.

    BACKGROUND: Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) has been associated with neurocognitive deficits, such as impaired verbal memory and executive functioning. Less is known about executive function and the role of comorbid depression in PTSD. Recently, studies have shown that verbal memory impairments

  11. How Do Families Help or Hinder the Emergence of Early Executive Function?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hughes, Claire H.; Ensor, Rosie A.

    2009-01-01

    This chapter describes longitudinal findings from a socially diverse sample of 125 British children seen at ages two and four. Four models of social influence on executive function are tested, using multiple measures of family life as well as comprehensive assessments of children's executive functions. Our results confirm the importance of…

  12. Designing Homework to Mediate Executive Functioning Deficits in Students with Disabilities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stockall, Nancy

    2017-01-01

    Designing homework to mediate executive functioning disorders of students with disabilities is critical to their future academic success. The article explains and defines different executive functions of the brain and how these impact students' ability to benefit from homework assignments. Specific strategies are provided for designing…

  13. The Development of Executive Functions and Early Mathematics: A Dynamic Relationship

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van der Ven, Sanne H. G.; Kroesbergen, Evelyn H.; Boom, Jan; Leseman, Paul P. M.

    2012-01-01

    Background: The relationship between executive functions and mathematical skills has been studied extensively, but results are inconclusive, and how this relationship evolves longitudinally is largely unknown. Aim: The aim was to investigate the factor structure of executive functions in inhibition, shifting, and updating; the longitudinal…

  14. Executive Function Skills and Academic Achievement Gains in Prekindergarten: Contributions of Learning-Related Behaviors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nesbitt, Kimberly Turner; Farran, Dale Clark; Fuhs, Mary Wagner

    2015-01-01

    Although research suggests associations between children's executive function skills and their academic achievement, the specific mechanisms that may help explain these associations in early childhood are unclear. This study examined whether children's (N = 1,103; M age = 54.5 months) executive function skills at the beginning of prekindergarten…

  15. Executive Functions among Youth with Down Syndrome and Co-Existing Neurobehavioural Disorders

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pritchard, A. E.; Kalback, S.; McCurdy, M.; Capone, G. T.

    2015-01-01

    Background: Executive function (EF) deficits are :a recognised component of the cognitive phenotype of youth with Down Syndrome (DS). Recent research in this area emphasises the use of behaviour ratings, such as the Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Functions-Preschool Version (BRIEF-P), to capture the real-world applications of executive…

  16. Life History Theory and Social Deviance: The Mediating Role of Executive Function

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wenner, C. J.; Bianchi, J.; Figueredo, A. J.; Rushton, J. Philippe; Jacobs, W. J.

    2013-01-01

    The present work examined predicted relations among Life History strategies, Executive Functions, socially antagonistic attitudes, socially antagonistic behaviors, and general intelligence. Life History (LH) theory predicts that Executive Functions and socially antagonistic attitudes and behaviors underpin an interrelated and coherent set of…

  17. Test Review: J. A. Naglieri & S. Goldstein "Comprehensive Executive Function Inventory." Toronto, Ontario, Canada: MHS, 2013

    Science.gov (United States)

    Climie, Emma A.; Cadogan, Sarah; Goukon, Rina

    2014-01-01

    The "Comprehensive Executive Function Inventory" (CEFI; Naglieri & Goldstein, 2013), published by Multi-Health Systems Inc. (MHS), is a new executive function (EF) rating scale for children and youth ages 5 to 18 years. The CEFI strives to accurately assess EF abilities based on self, parent, and teacher reports, and provides…

  18. Measuring the executive functions in schizophrenia : The voluntary allocation of effort

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Beilen, M; van Zomeren, EH; van den Bosch, RJ; Withaar, FK; Bouma, A

    2005-01-01

    Introduction: Executive functioning reflects not only what a patient does, but also how he does it or whether he does it at all [Lezak MD. The problem of assessing executive functions. Int. J. Psychol. 17 (1982) 28 1]. Standard test procedures strongly prompt subjects to certain behavior, so that

  19. Executive Function Skills and Academic Achievement Gains in Prekindergarten: Contributions of Learning-Related Behaviors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nesbitt, Kimberly Turner; Farran, Dale Clark; Fuhs, Mary Wagner

    2015-01-01

    Although research suggests associations between children's executive function skills and their academic achievement, the specific mechanisms that may help explain these associations in early childhood are unclear. This study examined whether children's (N = 1,103; M age = 54.5 months) executive function skills at the beginning of prekindergarten…

  20. A self administered executive functions ecological questionnaire (the Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function - Adult Version shows impaired scores in a sample of patients with schizophrenia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrei Szöke

    2013-02-01

    Full Text Available Subjective measurements of cognition have seldom been used in schizophrenia. This is mainly due to the assumption that such measurements lack sensitivity in a disorder characterized by poor insight. We investigated the capacity of BRIEF-A (Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function - Adult Version: a self-administered, ecological questionnaire to identify executive deficits in adults with schizophrenia. The global score and each domain-specific score was significantly lower in patients than in healthy controls. BRIEF-A could be a useful complement to objective measurements, providing a subjective assessment of everyday consequences of executive dysfunction in patients with schizophrenia.

  1. The effects of lifelong cognitive lifestyle on executive function in older people with Parkinson's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hindle, John V; Martin-Forbes, Pamela A; Martyr, Anthony; Bastable, Alexandra J M; Pye, Kirstie L; Mueller Gathercole, Virginia C; Thomas, Enlli M; Clare, Linda

    2017-02-07

    Active lifelong cognitive lifestyles increase cognitive reserve and have beneficial effects on global cognition, cognitive decline and dementia risk in Parkinson's disease (PD). Executive function is particularly impaired even in early PD, and this impacts on quality of life. The effects of lifelong cognitive lifestyle on executive function in PD have not been studied previously. This study examined the association between lifelong cognitive lifestyle, as a proxy measure of cognitive reserve, and executive function in people with PD. Sixty-nine people diagnosed with early PD without dementia were recruited as part of the Bilingualism as a protective factor in Age-related Neurodegenerative Conditions study. Participants completed a battery of tests of executive function. The Lifetime of Experiences Questionnaire was completed as a comprehensive assessment of lifelong cognitive lifestyle. Non-parametric correlations compared clinical measures with executive function scores. Cross-sectional analyses of covariance were performed comparing the performance of low and high cognitive reserve groups on executive function tests. Correlational analyses showed that better executive function scores were associated with younger age, higher levodopa dose and higher Lifetime of Experiences Questionnaire scores. Higher cognitive reserve was associated with better motor function, but high and low cognitive reserve groups did not differ in executive function. Cognitive reserve, although associated with global cognition, does not appear to be associated with executive function. This differential effect may reflect the specific cognitive profile of PD. The long-term effects of cognitive reserve on executive function in PD require further exploration. Copyright © 2017 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. Copyright © 2017 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  2. The impact of motivation and teachers’ autonomy support on children’s executive functions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sosic-Vasic, Zrinka; Keis, Oliver; Lau, Maren; Spitzer, Manfred; Streb, Judith

    2015-01-01

    The present study investigates the interplay of executive functions, motivation, and teacher’s autonomy support in school context. In a cross-sectional study design 208 students from different school types completed a standardized motivation questionnaire and processed two executive function tasks. All teachers who teach these students were asked about their autonomy supporting behavior by a standardized test. Multilevel analyses assessed the effects of the student’s motivation and their teachers’ autonomy support on student’s executive functions. Our results show considerable relationships between these variables: high executive function capacities came along with teacher’s autonomy support and student’s intrinsic motivation styles, whereas low executive function capacities were related to external regulation styles. The results indicate the importance of autonomy support in school instruction and disclose the need to popularize the self-regulation approach. PMID:25762958

  3. The impact of motivation and teachers' autonomy support on children's executive functions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sosic-Vasic, Zrinka; Keis, Oliver; Lau, Maren; Spitzer, Manfred; Streb, Judith

    2015-01-01

    The present study investigates the interplay of executive functions, motivation, and teacher's autonomy support in school context. In a cross-sectional study design 208 students from different school types completed a standardized motivation questionnaire and processed two executive function tasks. All teachers who teach these students were asked about their autonomy supporting behavior by a standardized test. Multilevel analyses assessed the effects of the student's motivation and their teachers' autonomy support on student's executive functions. Our results show considerable relationships between these variables: high executive function capacities came along with teacher's autonomy support and student's intrinsic motivation styles, whereas low executive function capacities were related to external regulation styles. The results indicate the importance of autonomy support in school instruction and disclose the need to popularize the self-regulation approach.

  4. The Impact of Motivation and Teachers’ Autonomy Support on Children’s Executive Functions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zrinka eSosic-Vasic

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available The present study investigates the interplay of executive functions, motivation and teacher’s autonomy support in school context. In a cross-sectional study design 208 students from different school types completed a standardized motivation questionnaire and processed two executive function tasks. All teachers who teach these students were asked about their autonomy supporting behavior by a standardized test. Multilevel analyses assessed the effects of the student’s motivation and their teachers’ autonomy support on student’s executive functions. Our results show considerable relationships between these variables: high executive function capacities came along with teacher’s autonomy support and student’s intrinsic motivation styles, whereas low executive function capacities were related to external regulation styles. The results indicate the importance of autonomy support in school instruction and disclose the need to popularize the self-regulation approach.

  5. The relationship of maternal mentalization and executive functioning to maternal recognition of infant cues and bonding.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turner, Jennifer M; Wittkowski, Anja; Hare, Dougal Julian

    2008-11-01

    The study examined associations between maternal mentalization ability, executive functioning, recognition of infant cues, and bonding in a non-clinical sample of mothers. It employed a correlational design. Sixty-four mothers of young infants completed assessments of mentalization ability, executive functioning, and bonding. Photographs of infant facial expressions were utilized to assess ability to recognize infant cues of emotion, but this was not found to correlate with either maternal mentalization or executive functioning ability. Whilst a trend towards a significant positive relationship between mothers' cued ability to attribute mental states and their ability to recognize infant facial expressions was observed, no significant relationships were found between bonding scores and performance on the executive functioning and mentalization measures. The present study contributes to our current understanding of the influence of maternal cognitive factors, specifically mentalization and executive functioning, on the development of the mother-infant relationship. Future research, methodological issues, and clinical and theoretical implications are discussed.

  6. Stereotype threat and executive functions: which functions mediate different threat-related outcomes?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rydell, Robert J; Van Loo, Katie J; Boucher, Kathryn L

    2014-03-01

    Stereotype threat research shows that women's math performance can be reduced by activating gender-based math stereotypes. Models of stereotype threat assert that threat reduces cognitive functioning, thereby accounting for its negative effects. This work provides a more detailed understanding of the cognitive processes through which stereotype threat leads women to underperform at math and to take risks, by examining which basic executive functions (inhibition, shifting, and updating) account for these outcomes. In Experiments 1 and 2, women under threat showed reduced inhibition, reduced updating, and reduced math performance compared with women in a control condition (or men); however, only updating accounted for women's poor math performance under threat. In Experiment 3, only updating accounted for stereotype threat's effect on women's math performance, whereas only inhibition accounted for the effect of threat on risk-taking, suggesting that distinct executive functions can account for different stereotype threat-related outcomes.

  7. Executive Functions and Social Competence in Young Children 6 Months Following Traumatic Brain Injury

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ganesalingam, Kalaichelvi; Yeates, Keith Owen; Taylor, H. Gerry; Walz, Nicolay Chertkoff; Stancin, Terry; Wade, Shari

    2011-01-01

    Objective This study examined the impact of traumatic brain injury (TBI) in young children on executive functions and social competence, and particularly on the role of executive functions as a predictor of social competence. Method Data were drawn from a prospective, longitudinal study. Participants were children aged 3.0 to 6.11 years at time of injury. The initial sample included 23 with severe TBI, 64 with moderate TBI, and 119 with orthopedic injuries (OI). All participants were assessed at 3 and 6 months post injury. Executive functions were assessed using neuropsychological tests (Delayed Alternation task and Shape School) and parent ratings on the Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function and Child Behavior Questionnaire. Parents rated children’s social competence on the Adaptive Behavior Assessment System, Preschool and Kindergarten Behavior Scales, and Home and Community Social Behavior Scales. Results Children with severe TBI displayed more negative outcomes than children with OI on neuropsychological tests and ratings of executive functions, and ratings of social competence (η2 ranged from 0.03 to 0.11). Neuropsychological tests of executive functions had significant but weak relationships with behavioral ratings of executive functions (ΔR2 ranged from .06 to .08). Behavioral ratings of executive functions were strongly related to social competence (ΔR2 ranged from .32 to .42), although shared rater and method variance likely contributed to these associations. Conclusions Severe TBI in young children negatively impacts executive functions and social competence. Executive functions may be an important determinant of social competence following TBI. PMID:21463038

  8. Hyperactivity in boys with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD): The role of executive and non-executive functions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hudec, Kristen L; Alderson, R Matt; Patros, Connor H G; Lea, Sarah E; Tarle, Stephanie J; Kasper, Lisa J

    2015-01-01

    Motor activity of boys (age 8-12 years) with (n=19) and without (n=18) ADHD was objectively measured with actigraphy across experimental conditions that varied with regard to demands on executive functions. Activity exhibited during two n-back (1-back, 2-back) working memory tasks was compared to activity during a choice-reaction time (CRT) task that placed relatively fewer demands on executive processes and during a simple reaction time (SRT) task that required mostly automatic processing with minimal executive demands. Results indicated that children in the ADHD group exhibited greater activity compared to children in the non-ADHD group. Further, both groups exhibited the greatest activity during conditions with high working memory demands, followed by the reaction time and control task conditions, respectively. The findings indicate that large-magnitude increases in motor activity are predominantly associated with increased demands on working memory, though demands on non-executive processes are sufficient to elicit small to moderate increases in motor activity as well. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  9. Estimation of the cool executive function using frontal electroencephalogram signals in first-episode schizophrenia patients

    OpenAIRE

    Yu, Yi; Zhao, Yun; Si, Yajing; Ren, Qiongqiong; Ren, Wu; JING, CHANGQIN; Zhang, Hongxing

    2016-01-01

    Background In schizophrenia, executive dysfunction is the most critical cognitive impairment, and is associated with abnormal neural activities, especially in the frontal lobes. Complexity estimation using electroencephalogram (EEG) recording based on nonlinear dynamics and task performance tests have been widely used to estimate executive dysfunction in schizophrenia. Methods The present study estimated the cool executive function based on fractal dimension (FD) values of EEG data recorded f...

  10. Fast modulation of executive function by language context in bilinguals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Yan Jing; Thierry, Guillaume

    2013-08-14

    Mastering two languages has been associated with enhancement in human executive control, but previous studies of this phenomenon have exclusively relied on comparisons between bilingual and monolingual individuals. In the present study, we tested a single group of Welsh-English bilinguals engaged in a nonverbal conflict resolution task and manipulated language context by intermittently presenting words in Welsh, English, or both languages. Surprisingly, participants showed enhanced executive capacity to resolve interference when exposed to a mixed compared with a single language context, even though they ignored the irrelevant contextual words. This result was supported by greater response accuracy and reduced amplitude of the P300, an electrophysiological correlate of cognitive interference. Our findings introduce a new level of plasticity in bilingual executive control dependent on fast changing language context rather than long-term language experience.

  11. Episodic memory and executive functioning in currently depressed patients compared to healthy controls.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pauls, Franz; Petermann, Franz; Lepach, Anja Christina

    2015-01-01

    At present, little is still known about the link between depression, memory and executive functioning. This study examined whether there are memory-related impairments in depressed patients and whether the size of such deficits depends on the age group and on specific types of cognitive measures. Memory performances of 215 clinically depressed patients were compared to the data of a matched control sample. Regression analyses were performed to determine the extent to which executive dysfunctions contributed to episodic memory impairments. When compared with healthy controls, significantly lower episodic memory and executive functioning performances were found for depressed patients of all age groups. Effect sizes appeared to vary across different memory and executive functioning measures. The extent to which executive dysfunctions could explain episodic memory impairments varied depending on the type of measure examined. These findings emphasise the need to consider memory-related functioning of depressed patients in the context of therapeutic treatments.

  12. The Function of Executive Function: Everyday Manifestations of Regulated Thinking in Preschool Settings

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moreno, Amanda J.; Shwayder, Irena; Friedman, Ilana Dvorin

    2017-01-01

    Executive function (EF) encompasses higher-order mental processes necessary for the conscious control of thought and action in the service of goals. Once thought not to apply to children at all, EF is now at the center of a burgeoning body of research on young children over the last 10-15 years indicating that it is a critical foundation of school…

  13. The Function of Executive Function: Everyday Manifestations of Regulated Thinking in Preschool Settings

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moreno, Amanda J.; Shwayder, Irena; Friedman, Ilana Dvorin

    2017-01-01

    Executive function (EF) encompasses higher-order mental processes necessary for the conscious control of thought and action in the service of goals. Once thought not to apply to children at all, EF is now at the center of a burgeoning body of research on young children over the last 10-15 years indicating that it is a critical foundation of school…

  14. Assessing the Executive Function Deficits of Patients with Parkinsons Disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Culbertson, William; Moberg, Paul; Duda, John; Stern, Matthew; Weintraub, Daniel

    2004-01-01

    The aim of the study was to investigate the utility of the Tower of London-Drexel (TOL DX ) in assessing the executive deficits associated with Parkinsons disease (PD). We sought to determine whether the TOL DX would differentiate between (a) patients with PD and healthy control participants (HCP), (b) demented and nondemented patients, and (c)…

  15. Coordination of Executive Functions in Monolingual and Bilingual Children

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bialystok, Ellen

    2011-01-01

    Two groups of 8-year-old children who were monolingual or bilingual completed a complex classification task in which they made semantic judgments on stimuli that were presented either visually or auditorily. The task requires coordinating a variety of executive control components, specifically working memory, inhibition, and shifting. When each of…

  16. Neurofeedback Improves Executive Functioning in Children with Autism Spectrum Disorders

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kouijzer, Mirjam E. J.; de Moor, Jan M. H.; Gerrits, Berrie J. L.; Congedo, Marco; van Schie, Hein T.

    2009-01-01

    Seven autistic children diagnosed with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) received a neurofeedback treatment that aimed to improve their level of executive control. Neurofeedback successfully reduced children's heightened theta/beta ratio by inhibiting theta activation and enhancing beta activation over sessions. Following treatment, children's…

  17. The role of executive functioning in children's attentional pain control: an experimental analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Verhoeven, Katrien; Dick, Bruce; Eccleston, Christopher; Goubert, Liesbet; Crombez, Geert

    2014-02-01

    Directing attention away from pain is often used in children's pain treatment programs to control pain. However, empirical evidence concerning its effectiveness is inconclusive. We therefore sought to understand other influencing factors, including executive function and its role in the pain experience. This study investigates the role of executive functioning in the effectiveness of distraction. School children (n=164) completed executive functioning tasks (inhibition, switching, and working memory) and performed a cold-pressor task. One half of the children simultaneously performed a distracting tone-detection task; the other half did not. Results showed that participants in the distraction group were engaged in the distraction task and were reported to pay significantly less attention to pain than controls. Executive functioning influenced distraction task engagement. More specifically, participants with good inhibition and working memory abilities performed the distraction task better; participants with good switching abilities reported having paid more attention to the distraction task. Furthermore, distraction was found to be ineffective in reducing pain intensity and affect. Executive functioning did not influence the effectiveness of distraction. However, a relationship was found between executive functioning and pain affect, indicating that participants with good inhibition and working memory abilities experienced the cold-pressor task as less stressful and unpleasant. Our findings suggest that distraction as a process for managing pain is complex. While it appears that executive function may play a role in adult distraction, in this study it did not direct attention away from pain. It may instead be involved in the overall pain experience.

  18. Executive functions and theory of mind as predictors of social adjustment in childhood traumatic brain injury.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robinson, Kristen E; Fountain-Zaragoza, Stephanie; Dennis, Maureen; Taylor, H Gerry; Bigler, Erin D; Rubin, Kenneth; Vannatta, Kathryn; Gerhardt, Cynthia A; Stancin, Terry; Yeates, Keith Owen

    2014-11-15

    This study examined whether executive function and theory of mind mediate the effects of pediatric traumatic brain injury (TBI) on social adjustment, relative to children with orthopedic injury (OI). Participants included 19 children with severe TBI, 41 children with complicated mild/moderate TBI, and 57 children with OI. They completed measures of executive function, as well as cognitive, affective, and conative theory of mind. Parents provided ratings of children's social adjustment. Children with severe TBI performed more poorly than children with OI on executive function and theory of mind tasks and were rated by parents as having more behavioral symptoms and worse communication and social skills. Executive function and theory of mind were positively correlated with social skills and communication skills, and negatively correlated with behavioral symptoms. In multiple mediator models, theory of mind and executive function were not significant direct predictors of any measure of social adjustment, but mediated the association between injury and adjustment for children with severe TBI. Theory of mind was a significant independent mediator when predicting social skills, but executive function was not. TBI in children, particularly severe injury, is associated with poor social adjustment. The impact of TBI on children's social adjustment is likely mediated by its effects on executive function and theory of mind.

  19. The role of executive functions in the control of aggressive behavior

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ulrike M Krämer

    2011-07-01

    Full Text Available An extensive literature suggests a link between executive functions and aggressive behavior in humans, pointing mostly to an inverse relationship, i.e. increased tendencies towards aggression in individuals scoring low on executive function tests. This literature is limited, though, in terms of the groups studied and the measures of executive functions. In this paper, we present data from two studies addressing these issues. In a first behavioral study, we asked whether high trait aggressiveness is related to reduced executive functions. A sample of over 600 students performed in an extensive behavioral test-battery including paradigms addressing executive functions such as the Eriksen Flanker task, Stroop task, n-back task and Tower of London. High trait aggressive participants were found to have a significantly reduced latency score in the Tower of London, indicating more impulsive behavior compared to low trait aggressive participants. No other differences were detected. In an EEG-study, we assessed neural and behavioral correlates of error monitoring and response inhibition in participants who were characterized based on their laboratory-induced aggressive behavior in a competitive reaction time task. Participants who retaliated more in the aggression paradigm and had reduced frontal activity when being provoked did not, however, show any reduction in behavioral or neural correlates of executive control compared to the more aggressive participants. Our results question a strong relationship between aggression and executive functions at least for healthy, high-functioning people.

  20. The most frequently used tests for assessing executive functions in aging

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Camila de Assis Faria

    Full Text Available There are numerous neuropsychological tests for assessing executive functions in aging, which vary according to the different domains assessed. OBJECTIVE: To present a systematic review of the most frequently used instruments for assessing executive functions in older adults with different educational levels in clinical and experimental research. METHODS: We searched for articles published in the last five years, using the PubMed database with the following terms: "neuropsychological tests", "executive functions", and "mild cognitive impairment". There was no language restriction. RESULTS: 25 articles fulfilled all the inclusion criteria. The seven neuropsychological tests most frequently used to evaluate executive functions in aging were: [1] Trail Making Test (TMT Form B; [2] Verbal Fluency Test (VFT - F, A and S; [3] VFT Animals category; [4] Clock Drawing Test (CDT; [5] Digits Forward and Backward subtests (WAIS-R or WAIS-III; [6] Stroop Test; and [7] Wisconsin Card Sorting Test (WCST and its variants. The domains of executive functions most frequently assessed were: mental flexibility, verbal fluency, planning, working memory, and inhibitory control. CONCLUSION: The study identified the tests and domains of executive functions most frequently used in the last five years by research groups worldwide to evaluate older adults. These results can direct future research and help build evaluation protocols for assessing executive functions, taking into account the different educational levels and socio-demographic profiles of older adults in Brazil.

  1. Executive Functions and Theory of Mind as Predictors of Social Adjustment in Childhood Traumatic Brain Injury

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fountain-Zaragoza, Stephanie; Dennis, Maureen; Taylor, H. Gerry; Bigler, Erin D.; Rubin, Kenneth; Vannatta, Kathryn; Gerhardt, Cynthia A.; Stancin, Terry; Yeates, Keith Owen

    2014-01-01

    Abstract This study examined whether executive function and theory of mind mediate the effects of pediatric traumatic brain injury (TBI) on social adjustment, relative to children with orthopedic injury (OI). Participants included 19 children with severe TBI, 41 children with complicated mild/moderate TBI, and 57 children with OI. They completed measures of executive function, as well as cognitive, affective, and conative theory of mind. Parents provided ratings of children's social adjustment. Children with severe TBI performed more poorly than children with OI on executive function and theory of mind tasks and were rated by parents as having more behavioral symptoms and worse communication and social skills. Executive function and theory of mind were positively correlated with social skills and communication skills, and negatively correlated with behavioral symptoms. In multiple mediator models, theory of mind and executive function were not significant direct predictors of any measure of social adjustment, but mediated the association between injury and adjustment for children with severe TBI. Theory of mind was a significant independent mediator when predicting social skills, but executive function was not. TBI in children, particularly severe injury, is associated with poor social adjustment. The impact of TBI on children's social adjustment is likely mediated by its effects on executive function and theory of mind. PMID:25003478

  2. Executive function is an important consideration for coping strategy use in people with multiple sclerosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grech, Lisa B; Kiropoulos, Litza A; Kirby, Katherine M; Butler, Ernest; Paine, Mark; Hester, Robert

    2017-10-01

    Executive function deficits are prevalent in people with multiple sclerosis (PwMS), and PwMS use less adaptive coping than healthy controls. This cross-sectional study assessed whether there is a relationship between executive function and coping in PwMS. One hundred and seven participants with relapsing remitting or secondary progressive MS (n = 83 and 24, respectively; age M = 48.8 ± 11.1 years) completed measures of coping and executive function. A positive relationship was found between verbal fluency and use of active, emotional, and instrumental social support coping, and total executive function and substance abuse coping. There was a negative relationship between coping strategies and core (social support, acceptance, religion, restraint, and total coping), higher order (denial and humor), and total executive function indices (acceptance, religion, behavioral disengagement, denial, and total coping). These directional differences provide support for the importance of specific executive functions in coping strategy utilization. Understanding these relationships will assist psychologists and neuropsychologists with patient psychoeducation, adaptive coping strategy intervention and management for PwMS with reduced executive function ability.

  3. Applying an Integrative Framework of Executive Function to Preschoolers With Specific Language Impairment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kapa, Leah L; Plante, Elena; Doubleday, Kevin

    2017-08-16

    The first goal of this research was to compare verbal and nonverbal executive function abilities between preschoolers with and without specific language impairment (SLI). The second goal was to assess the group differences on 4 executive function components in order to determine if the components may be hierarchically related as suggested within a developmental integrative framework of executive function. This study included 26 4- and 5-year-olds diagnosed with SLI and 26 typically developing age- and sex-matched peers. Participants were tested on verbal and nonverbal measures of sustained selective attention, working memory, inhibition, and shifting. The SLI group performed worse compared with typically developing children on both verbal and nonverbal measures of sustained selective attention and working memory, the verbal inhibition task, and the nonverbal shifting task. Comparisons of standardized group differences between executive function measures revealed a linear increase with the following order: working memory, inhibition, shifting, and sustained selective attention. The pattern of results suggests that preschoolers with SLI have deficits in executive functioning compared with typical peers, and deficits are not limited to verbal tasks. A significant linear relationship between group differences across executive function components supports the possibility of a hierarchical relationship between executive function skills.

  4. The relationship between executive functions and IQ in Korean children and the comparison with Chinese children.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Song, Hyunjoo; Jinyu, An

    2017-01-01

    This study aimed to investigate the relationship between perceived/performance-based executive function and IQ. Additionally, the relationship between perceived executive function and intelligence was investigated cross-culturally between South Korea and China. Korean children (60; M = 34, F = 26, Mean age = 10.35) were included in study 1, and Korean children (43, M = 23, F = 20, Mean age = 10.05) and Chinese children (56; M = 29, F = 27, Mean age = 10.40) were included in study 2. The Korean-Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children-IV, the Stroop test, the CTT-2, and the executive function questionnaire were used for Korean subjects, and the Raven's matrix test and the executive function questionnaire were used for Korean and Chinese subjects. Multiple regression showed that CTT-2(RT), emotional control difficulty, and Color Word within a 45' Stroop test trial were significant predictors of total IQ. The cross-cultural analysis showed a statistically significant difference between the two countries in the emotional control aspect of perceived executive function. There were no interactions between country and intelligence. In conclusion, intelligence was related to overall executive function. Korean children and Chinese children showed cultural differences in processing emotion. These results are expected to contribute to developing therapeutic strategies for executive function in children and to exchanging these strategies between Korea and China.

  5. Emotional Reactivity and Regulation in Infancy Interact to Predict Executive Functioning in Early Childhood

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ursache, Alexandra; Blair, Clancy; Stifter, Cynthia; Voegtline, Kristin

    2013-01-01

    The relation of observed emotional reactivity and regulation in infancy to executive function in early childhood was examined in a prospective longitudinal sample of 1,292 children from predominantly low-income and rural communities. Children participated in a fear eliciting task at ages 7, 15, and 24 months and completed an executive function…

  6. Executive Functioning Characteristics Associated with ADHD Comorbidity in Adolescents with Disruptive Behavior Disorders

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hummer, Tom A.; Kronenberger, William G.; Wang, Yang; Dunn, David W.; Mosier, Kristine M.; Kalnin, Andrew J.; Mathews, Vincent P.

    2011-01-01

    The nature of executive dysfunction in youth with disruptive behavior disorders (DBD) remains unclear, despite extensive research in samples of children with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). To determine the relationship between DBD, ADHD, and executive function deficits in aggressive teens, adolescents with DBD and comorbid ADHD…

  7. Formative versus Reflective Measurement in Executive Functions: A Critique of Willoughby et al.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peterson, Eric; Welsh, Marilyn C.

    2014-01-01

    Research into executive functioning (EF) has indeed grown exponentially across the past few decades, but as the Willoughby et al. critique makes clear, there remain fundamental questions to be resolved. The crux of their argument is built upon an examination of the confirmatory factor analysis (CFA) approach to understanding executive processes.…

  8. Contrasting Deficits on Executive Functions between ADHD and Reading Disabled Children

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marzocchi, Gian Marco; Oosterlaan, Jaap; Zuddas, Alessandro; Cavolina, Pina; Geurts, Hilde; Redigolo, Debora; Vio, Claudio; Sergeant, Joseph A.

    2008-01-01

    Background: The object of this study was to analyze the executive functioning of children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) or reading disability (RD) independent of their non-executive deficits. Methods: Three carefully diagnosed groups of children, aged between 7 and 12 years (35 ADHD, 22 RD and 30 typically developing…

  9. Contrasting deficits on executive functions between ADHD and reading disabled children

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    G.M. Marzocchi; J. Oosterlaan; A. Zuddas; P. Cavolina; H. Geurts; D. Redigilo; C. Vio; J.A. Sergeant

    2008-01-01

    Background: The object of this study was to analyze the executive functioning of children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) or reading disability (RD) independent of their non-executive deficits. Methods: Three carefully diagnosed groups of children, aged between 7 and 12 years (3

  10. Executive and Attentional Functions in Chronic Pain: Does Performance Decrease with Increasing Task Load?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joukje M Oosterman

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Diminished executive function and attentional control has been reported in chronic pain patients. However, the precise pattern of impairment in these aspects of cognition in chronic pain remains unclear. Moreover, a decline in psychomotor speed could potentially influence executive and attentional control performance in pain patients.

  11. Formative versus Reflective Measurement in Executive Functions: A Critique of Willoughby et al.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peterson, Eric; Welsh, Marilyn C.

    2014-01-01

    Research into executive functioning (EF) has indeed grown exponentially across the past few decades, but as the Willoughby et al. critique makes clear, there remain fundamental questions to be resolved. The crux of their argument is built upon an examination of the confirmatory factor analysis (CFA) approach to understanding executive processes.…

  12. Less-structured time in children’s daily lives predicts self-directed executive functioning

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jane Elizabeth Barker

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Executive functions in childhood predict important life outcomes. Thus, there is great interest in attempts to improve executive functions early in life. Many interventions are led by trained adults, including structured training activities in the lab, and less-structured activities implemented in schools. Such programs have yielded gains in children’s externally-driven executive functioning, where they are instructed on what goal-directed actions to carry out and when. However, it is less clear how children’s experiences relate to their development of self-directed executive functioning, where they must determine on their own what goal-directed actions to carry out and when. We hypothesized that time spent in less-structured activities would give children opportunities to practice self-directed executive functioning, and lead to benefits. To investigate this possibility, we collected information from parents about their 6-7 year-old children’s daily, annual, and typical schedules. We categorized children’s activities as structured or less-structured based on categorization schemes from prior studies on child leisure time use. We assessed children’s self-directed executive functioning using a well-established verbal fluency task, in which children generate members of a category and can decide on their own when to switch from one subcategory to another. The more time that children spent in less-structured activities, the better their self-directed executive functioning. The opposite was true of structured activities, which predicted poorer self-directed executive functioning. These relationships were robust (holding across increasingly strict classifications of structured and less-structured time and specific (time use did not predict externally-driven executive functioning. We discuss implications, caveats, and ways in which potential interpretations can be distinguished in future work, to advance an understanding of this fundamental

  13. RELATIONSHIP OF EXECUTIVE FUNCTION, EDUCATIONAL STATUS AND QUALITY OF LIFE WITH THE FUNCTIONAL BALANCE IN OLDER ADULTS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rushikesh K. Joshi

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Background: Balance is a complex construct which is affected by cognition. It is necessary to know the cognitive correlates of functional balance to design necessary interventions for the individuals with balance problems. Objectives: To determine the relationship of executive function, educational status and quality of life with the functional balance in older adults. Methodology: 120 healthy elderly subjects were taken for the study based on the inclusion criteria. Following the initial screening, the executive function, educational status and quality of life of the subjects were measured. Executive function performance test was used for measuring executive function. The quality of life was measured using SF36 questionnaire. The functional balance was measured using the berg balance scale and timed up and go test. The relationship among the outcome measure was found out using the Pearson correlation coefficient. Results: The results of the present study showed that EFPT and BBS are negatively correlated to each other with r-value -0.271. The educational status score showed a low positive correlation with functional balance with r-value 0.358. The quality of life did not show any significant correlation with functional balance. Interpretation & Conclusion: Executive function and functional balance showed a low correlation. This means that higher the executive function, better will be the functional balance of the individual. Moreover, educational status also affects the functional balance of the individual.

  14. The Development of Metaphor Comprehension and Its Relationship with Relational Verbal Reasoning and Executive Function.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nuria Carriedo

    Full Text Available Our main objective was to analyse the different contributions of relational verbal reasoning (analogical and class inclusion and executive functioning to metaphor comprehension across development. We postulated that both relational reasoning and executive functioning should predict individual and developmental differences. However, executive functioning would become increasingly involved when metaphor comprehension is highly demanding, either because of the metaphors' high difficulty (relatively novel metaphors in the absence of a context or because of the individual's special processing difficulties, such as low levels of reading experience or low semantic knowledge. Three groups of participants, 11-year-olds, 15-year-olds and young adults, were assessed in different relational verbal reasoning tasks-analogical and class-inclusion-and in executive functioning tasks-updating information in working memory, inhibition, and shifting. The results revealed clear progress in metaphor comprehension between ages 11 and 15 and between ages 15 and 21. However, the importance of executive function in metaphor comprehension was evident by age 15 and was restricted to updating information in working memory and cognitive inhibition. Participants seemed to use two different strategies to interpret metaphors: relational verbal reasoning and executive functioning. This was clearly shown when comparing the performance of the "more efficient" participants in metaphor interpretation with that of the "less efficient" ones. Whereas in the first case none of the executive variables or those associated with relational verbal reasoning were significantly related to metaphor comprehension, in the latter case, both groups of variables had a clear predictor effect.

  15. Executive functions and social skills in survivors of pediatric brain tumor.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wolfe, Kelly R; Walsh, Karin S; Reynolds, Nina C; Mitchell, Frances; Reddy, Alyssa T; Paltin, Iris; Madan-Swain, Avi

    2013-01-01

    Medical advances have resulted in increased survival rates for children with brain tumors. Consequently, issues related to survivorship have become more critical. The use of multimodal treatment, in particular cranial radiation therapy, has been associated with subsequent cognitive decline. Specifically, deficits in executive functions have been reported in survivors of various types of pediatric brain tumor. Survivors are left with difficulties, particularly in self-monitoring, initiation, inhibition, and planning, to name a few. Another domain in which survivors of pediatric brain tumor have been reported to show difficulty is that of social skills. Parents, teachers, and survivors themselves have reported decreased social functioning following treatment. Deficits in executive functions and social skills are likely interrelated in this population, as executive skills are needed to navigate various aspects of social interaction; however, this has yet to be studied empirically. Twenty-four survivors of pediatric brain tumor were assessed using a computerized task of executive functions, as well as paper-and-pencil measures of social skills and real-world executive skills. Social functioning was related to a specific aspect of executive functions, that is, the survivors' variability in response time, such that inconsistent responding was associated with better parent-reported and survivor-reported social skills, independent of intellectual abilities. Additionally, parent-reported real-world global executive abilities predicted parent-reported social skills. The implications of these findings for social skills interventions and future research are discussed.

  16. The Development of Metaphor Comprehension and Its Relationship with Relational Verbal Reasoning and Executive Function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carriedo, Nuria; Corral, Antonio; Montoro, Pedro R; Herrero, Laura; Ballestrino, Patricia; Sebastián, Iraia

    2016-01-01

    Our main objective was to analyse the different contributions of relational verbal reasoning (analogical and class inclusion) and executive functioning to metaphor comprehension across development. We postulated that both relational reasoning and executive functioning should predict individual and developmental differences. However, executive functioning would become increasingly involved when metaphor comprehension is highly demanding, either because of the metaphors' high difficulty (relatively novel metaphors in the absence of a context) or because of the individual's special processing difficulties, such as low levels of reading experience or low semantic knowledge. Three groups of participants, 11-year-olds, 15-year-olds and young adults, were assessed in different relational verbal reasoning tasks-analogical and class-inclusion-and in executive functioning tasks-updating information in working memory, inhibition, and shifting. The results revealed clear progress in metaphor comprehension between ages 11 and 15 and between ages 15 and 21. However, the importance of executive function in metaphor comprehension was evident by age 15 and was restricted to updating information in working memory and cognitive inhibition. Participants seemed to use two different strategies to interpret metaphors: relational verbal reasoning and executive functioning. This was clearly shown when comparing the performance of the "more efficient" participants in metaphor interpretation with that of the "less efficient" ones. Whereas in the first case none of the executive variables or those associated with relational verbal reasoning were significantly related to metaphor comprehension, in the latter case, both groups of variables had a clear predictor effect.

  17. The Development of Metaphor Comprehension and Its Relationship with Relational Verbal Reasoning and Executive Function

    Science.gov (United States)

    Montoro, Pedro R.; Herrero, Laura; Ballestrino, Patricia; Sebastián, Iraia

    2016-01-01

    Our main objective was to analyse the different contributions of relational verbal reasoning (analogical and class inclusion) and executive functioning to metaphor comprehension across development. We postulated that both relational reasoning and executive functioning should predict individual and developmental differences. However, executive functioning would become increasingly involved when metaphor comprehension is highly demanding, either because of the metaphors’ high difficulty (relatively novel metaphors in the absence of a context) or because of the individual’s special processing difficulties, such as low levels of reading experience or low semantic knowledge. Three groups of participants, 11-year-olds, 15-year-olds and young adults, were assessed in different relational verbal reasoning tasks—analogical and class-inclusion—and in executive functioning tasks—updating information in working memory, inhibition, and shifting. The results revealed clear progress in metaphor comprehension between ages 11 and 15 and between ages 15 and 21. However, the importance of executive function in metaphor comprehension was evident by age 15 and was restricted to updating information in working memory and cognitive inhibition. Participants seemed to use two different strategies to interpret metaphors: relational verbal reasoning and executive functioning. This was clearly shown when comparing the performance of the "more efficient" participants in metaphor interpretation with that of the "less efficient” ones. Whereas in the first case none of the executive variables or those associated with relational verbal reasoning were significantly related to metaphor comprehension, in the latter case, both groups of variables had a clear predictor effect. PMID:26954501

  18. Socioeconomic Risk Moderates the Link between Household Chaos and Maternal Executive Function

    OpenAIRE

    Deater-Deckard, Kirby; Chen, Nan; Wang, Zhe; Bell, Martha Ann

    2012-01-01

    We examined the link between household chaos (i.e., noise, clutter, disarray, lack of routines) and maternal executive function (i.e., effortful regulation of attention and memory), and whether it varied as a function of socioeconomic risk (i.e., single parenthood, lower mother and father educational attainment, housing situation, and father unemployment). We hypothesized that: 1) higher levels of household chaos would be linked with poorer maternal executive function, even when controlling f...

  19. Cross-sectional study of executive functioning in children with developmental coordination disorders

    OpenAIRE

    2012-01-01

    Background Children with Developmental Coordination Disorder (DCD) have multiple impairments in movement, in learning, and in the activities of daily living. Studies from other countries have associated these impairments with cognitive function, particularly executive functioning, but these findings have not been confirmed in China. Aim Compare the executive functioning of children with DCD with that of normal children. Methods The Wisconsin Card Sorting Test (WCST) was administered to 39 chi...

  20. Executive functions for reading and writing in typical literacy development and dyslexia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Altemeier, Leah E; Abbott, Robert D; Berninger, Virginia W

    2008-07-01

    Experiment 1: Hierarchical linear modeling of growth trajectories of three executive functions (inhibition; rapid automatic switching, RAS; and combined inhibition/switching) in typical readers and writers showed steady improvement of inhibition but leveling of RAS and inhibition/switching about fourth grade. In multiple regressions, RAS, entered after inhibition, contributed uniquely to literacy outcomes at every grade. Improvement of executive functions over the first four grades predicted literacy outcomes at fourth grade. Experiment 2: For children with dyslexia, executive functions explained less variance in literacy outcomes, and boys were worse in inhibition and inhibition/switching. Developmental, educational, and clinical significance of findings are discussed.

  1. Development of affective theory of mind across adolescence: disentangling the role of executive functions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vetter, Nora C; Altgassen, Mareike; Phillips, Louise; Mahy, Caitlin E V; Kliegel, Matthias

    2013-01-01

    Theory of mind, the ability to understand mental states, involves inferences about others' cognitive (cognitive theory of mind) and emotional (affective theory of mind) mental states. The current study explored the role of executive functions in developing affective theory of mind across adolescence. Affective theory of mind and three subcomponents of executive functions (inhibition, updating, and shifting) were measured. Affective theory of mind was positively related to age, and all three executive functions. Specifically, inhibition explained the largest amount of variance in age-related differences in affective theory of mind.

  2. Are executive functions related to emotional intelligence? A correlational study in schizophrenia and borderline personality disorder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hurtado, M M; Triviño, M; Arnedo, M; Roldán, G; Tudela, P

    2016-12-30

    This research explored the relationship between executive functions (working memory and reasoning subtests of the Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale, Trail Making and Stroop tests, fluency and planning tasks, and Wisconsin Card Sorting Test) and emotional intelligence measured by the Mayer-Salovey-Caruso Emotional Intelligence Test in patients with schizophrenia or borderline personality disorder compared to a control group. As expected, both clinical groups performed worse than the control group in executive functions and emotional intelligence, although the impairment was greater in the borderline personality disorder group. Executive functions significantly correlated with social functioning. Results are discussed in relation to the brain circuits that mediate executive functions and emotional intelligence and the findings obtained with other models of social cognition.

  3. Benefits of sports participation for executive function in disabled athletes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Di Russo, Francesco; Bultrini, Alessandro; Brunelli, Stefano; Delussu, Anna Sofia; Polidori, Lorenzo; Taddei, Francesco; Traballesi, Marco; Spinelli, Donatella

    2010-12-01

    We investigated the effect of sports activity on physically-disabled individuals using behavioral and electrophysiological techniques. Visual go/no-go discriminative and simple response tasks were used. Participants included 17 disabled athletes, 9 from open-skill (wheelchair basketball) and eight from closed-skill (swimming) sports, and 18 healthy non-athletes. Reaction times of the disabled athletes were slower than those of healthy non-athletes on both tasks (7% and 13% difference, respectively). Intra-individual variations in reaction times, switch cost, and number of false alarms, were higher in the swimmers, but comparable to healthy non-athletes, in the basketball group. Event-related potentials (ERPs) early components P1, N1, and P2 had longer latencies in the disabled athletes. The late P3 component had longer latency and smaller amplitude in the disabled athletes only in the discriminative response task. The N2 component, which reflected inhibition/execution processing in the discriminative response task, was delayed and reduced in the swimmer group, but was comparable to healthy subjects in the basketball group. Our results show that (1) the ERP components related to perceptual processing, and late components related to executive processing, were impaired in disabled subjects; and (2) open-skill sports such as basketball may partially compensate for executive control impairment by fostering the stability of motor responses and favoring response flexibility.

  4. Future thinking in Parkinson's disease: an executive function?

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Vito, Stefania; Gamboz, Nadia; Brandimonte, Maria Antonella; Barone, Paolo; Amboni, Marianna; Della Sala, Sergio

    2012-06-01

    Contrary to what was originally thought (Hassabis, Kumaran, Vann, & Maguire, 2007) recent data have shown that imagining the future is not entirely dependent on the hippocampus (Squire et al., 2010) and neuroimaging studies have demonstrated a frontopolar activation during future thinking tasks (Okuda et al., 2003). The present study investigated whether the performance of people with Parkinson's disease (PD) on future simulation tasks was dependent on memory or executive control. Thirty-one PD patients, asked to imagine possible future scenarios, generated fewer future episodic details than matched controls. The seven patients who clearly performed below the range of controls in future thinking, were also significantly poorer on the Frontal Assessment Battery (FAB), a battery assessing executive control, but showed no deficits in immediate or delayed memory tests. These results suggest that poor performance in the future thinking task is associated with poor executive control and less so with memory impairment. Flexible searching activities of past details might be crucial capacities for envisaging one's own future. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. Modulation of Higher-Order Olfaction Components on Executive Functions in Humans

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fagundo, Ana B.; Jiménez-Murcia, Susana; Giner-Bartolomé, Cristina; Islam, Mohammed Anisul; de la Torre, Rafael; Pastor, Antoni; Casanueva, Felipe F.; Crujeiras, Ana B.; Granero, Roser; Baños, Rosa; Botella, Cristina; Fernández-Real, Jose M.; Frühbeck, Gema; Gómez-Ambrosi, Javier; Menchón, José M.; Tinahones, Francisco J.; Fernández-Aranda, Fernando

    2015-01-01

    The prefrontal (PFC) and orbitofrontal cortex (OFC) appear to be associated with both executive functions and olfaction. However, there is little data relating olfactory processing and executive functions in humans. The present study aimed at exploring the role of olfaction on executive functioning, making a distinction between primary and more cognitive aspects of olfaction. Three executive tasks of similar difficulty were used. One was used to assess hot executive functions (Iowa Gambling Task-IGT), and two as a measure of cold executive functioning (Stroop Colour and Word Test-SCWT and Wisconsin Card Sorting Test-WCST). Sixty two healthy participants were included: 31 with normosmia and 31 with hyposmia. Olfactory abilities were assessed using the ‘‘Sniffin’ Sticks’’ test and the olfactory threshold, odour discrimination and odour identification measures were obtained. All participants were female, aged between 18 and 60. Results showed that participants with hyposmia displayed worse performance in decision making (IGT; Cohen’s-d = 0.91) and cognitive flexibility (WCST; Cohen’s-d between 0.54 and 0.68) compared to those with normosmia. Multiple regression adjusted by the covariates participants’ age and education level showed a positive association between odour identification and the cognitive inhibition response (SCWT-interference; Beta = 0.29; p = .034). The odour discrimination capacity was not a predictor of the cognitive executive performance. Our results suggest that both hot and cold executive functions seem to be associated with higher-order olfactory functioning in humans. These results robustly support the hypothesis that olfaction and executive measures have a common neural substrate in PFC and OFC, and suggest that olfaction might be a reliable cognitive marker in psychiatric and neurologic disorders. PMID:26083418

  6. Modulation of Higher-Order Olfaction Components on Executive Functions in Humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fagundo, Ana B; Jiménez-Murcia, Susana; Giner-Bartolomé, Cristina; Islam, Mohammed Anisul; de la Torre, Rafael; Pastor, Antoni; Casanueva, Felipe F; Crujeiras, Ana B; Granero, Roser; Baños, Rosa; Botella, Cristina; Fernández-Real, Jose M; Frühbeck, Gema; Gómez-Ambrosi, Javier; Menchón, José M; Tinahones, Francisco J; Fernández-Aranda, Fernando

    2015-01-01

    The prefrontal (PFC) and orbitofrontal cortex (OFC) appear to be associated with both executive functions and olfaction. However, there is little data relating olfactory processing and executive functions in humans. The present study aimed at exploring the role of olfaction on executive functioning, making a distinction between primary and more cognitive aspects of olfaction. Three executive tasks of similar difficulty were used. One was used to assess hot executive functions (Iowa Gambling Task-IGT), and two as a measure of cold executive functioning (Stroop Colour and Word Test-SCWT and Wisconsin Card Sorting Test-WCST). Sixty two healthy participants were included: 31 with normosmia and 31 with hyposmia. Olfactory abilities were assessed using the ''Sniffin' Sticks'' test and the olfactory threshold, odour discrimination and odour identification measures were obtained. All participants were female, aged between 18 and 60. Results showed that participants with hyposmia displayed worse performance in decision making (IGT; Cohen's-d = 0.91) and cognitive flexibility (WCST; Cohen's-d between 0.54 and 0.68) compared to those with normosmia. Multiple regression adjusted by the covariates participants' age and education level showed a positive association between odour identification and the cognitive inhibition response (SCWT-interference; Beta = 0.29; p = .034). The odour discrimination capacity was not a predictor of the cognitive executive performance. Our results suggest that both hot and cold executive functions seem to be associated with higher-order olfactory functioning in humans. These results robustly support the hypothesis that olfaction and executive measures have a common neural substrate in PFC and OFC, and suggest that olfaction might be a reliable cognitive marker in psychiatric and neurologic disorders.

  7. Physical aggression, diagnostic presentation, and executive functioning in inpatient adolescents diagnosed with mood disorders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holler, Karen; Kavanaugh, Brian

    2013-08-01

    While a relationship has been identified between physical aggression and executive functioning within the adult population, this relationship has not yet been consistently examined in the adolescent population. This study examined the association between physical aggression towards others, self-reported depressive symptoms, and executive functioning within an adolescent inpatient sample diagnosed with a mood disorder. This study consisted of a retrospective chart review of 105 adolescent inpatients (ages 13-19) that received a diagnosis of a mood disorder (excluding Bipolar Disorder). Participants were grouped based on history of aggression towards others, resulting in a mood disorder with physically aggressive symptoms group (n = 49) and a mood disorder without physically aggressive symptoms group (n = 56). Ten scores on various measures of executive functioning were grouped into five executive functioning subdomains: Problem Solving/Planning, Cognitive Flexibility/Set Shifting, Response Inhibition/Interference Control, Fluency, and Working Memory/Simple Attention. Results from analyses of covariance indicated that there were no significant differences (p executive functioning subdomains. Correlation analyses (p executive dysfunction in adolescent psychiatric conditions, and the specific executive subdomains that are implicated.

  8. Default mode network in the effects of Δ9-Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC on human executive function.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matthijs G Bossong

    Full Text Available Evidence is increasing for involvement of the endocannabinoid system in cognitive functions including attention and executive function, as well as in psychiatric disorders characterized by cognitive deficits, such as schizophrenia. Executive function appears to be associated with both modulation of active networks and inhibition of activity in the default mode network. In the present study, we examined the role of the endocannabinoid system in executive function, focusing on both the associated brain network and the default mode network. A pharmacological functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI study was conducted with a placebo-controlled, cross-over design, investigating effects of the endocannabinoid agonist Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC on executive function in 20 healthy volunteers, using a continuous performance task with identical pairs. Task performance was impaired after THC administration, reflected in both an increase in false alarms and a reduction in detected targets. This was associated with reduced deactivation in a set of brain regions linked to the default mode network, including posterior cingulate cortex and angular gyrus. Less deactivation was significantly correlated with lower performance after THC. Regions that were activated by the continuous performance task, notably bilateral prefrontal and parietal cortex, did not show effects of THC. These findings suggest an important role for the endocannabinoid system in both default mode modulation and executive function. This may be relevant for psychiatric disorders associated with executive function deficits, such as schizophrenia and ADHD.

  9. Socioeconomic Risk Moderates the Link between Household Chaos and Maternal Executive Function

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deater-Deckard, Kirby; Chen, Nan; Wang, Zhe; Bell, Martha Ann

    2012-01-01

    We examined the link between household chaos (i.e., noise, clutter, disarray, lack of routines) and maternal executive function (i.e., effortful regulation of attention and memory), and whether it varied as a function of socioeconomic risk (i.e., single parenthood, lower mother and father educational attainment, housing situation, and father unemployment). We hypothesized that: 1) higher levels of household chaos would be linked with poorer maternal executive function, even when controlling for other measures of cognitive functioning (e.g., verbal ability), and 2) this link would be strongest in the most socioeconomically distressed or lowest-socioeconomic status households. The diverse sample included 153 mothers from urban and rural areas who completed a questionnaire and a battery of cognitive executive function tasks and a verbal ability task in the laboratory. Results were mixed for hypothesis 1, and consistent with hypothesis 2. Two-thirds of the variance overlapped between household chaos and maternal executive function, but only in families with high levels of socioeconomic risk. This pattern was not found for chaos and maternal verbal ability, suggesting that the potentially deleterious effects of household chaos may be specific to maternal executive function. The findings implicate household chaos as a powerful statistical predictor of maternal executive function in socioeconomically distressed contexts. PMID:22563703

  10. Default mode network in the effects of Δ9-Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) on human executive function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bossong, Matthijs G; Jansma, J Martijn; van Hell, Hendrika H; Jager, Gerry; Kahn, René S; Ramsey, Nick F

    2013-01-01

    Evidence is increasing for involvement of the endocannabinoid system in cognitive functions including attention and executive function, as well as in psychiatric disorders characterized by cognitive deficits, such as schizophrenia. Executive function appears to be associated with both modulation of active networks and inhibition of activity in the default mode network. In the present study, we examined the role of the endocannabinoid system in executive function, focusing on both the associated brain network and the default mode network. A pharmacological functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) study was conducted with a placebo-controlled, cross-over design, investigating effects of the endocannabinoid agonist Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) on executive function in 20 healthy volunteers, using a continuous performance task with identical pairs. Task performance was impaired after THC administration, reflected in both an increase in false alarms and a reduction in detected targets. This was associated with reduced deactivation in a set of brain regions linked to the default mode network, including posterior cingulate cortex and angular gyrus. Less deactivation was significantly correlated with lower performance after THC. Regions that were activated by the continuous performance task, notably bilateral prefrontal and parietal cortex, did not show effects of THC. These findings suggest an important role for the endocannabinoid system in both default mode modulation and executive function. This may be relevant for psychiatric disorders associated with executive function deficits, such as schizophrenia and ADHD.

  11. Executive Function in Children with Intellectual Disability--The Effects of Sex, Level and Aetiology of Intellectual Disability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Memisevic, H.; Sinanovic, O.

    2014-01-01

    Background: Executive function is very important in the children's overall development. The goal of this study was to assess the executive function in children with intellectual disability (ID) through the use of the Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function (BRIEF) teacher version. An additional goal was to examine the differences in…

  12. Investigating executive functions in children with severe speech and movement disorders using structured tasks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kristine eStadskleiv

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available Executive functions are the basis for goal-directed activity and include planning, monitoring, and inhibition, and language seems to play a role in the development of these functions. There is a tradition of studying executive function in both typical and atypical populations, and the present study investigates executive functions in children with severe speech and motor impairments who are communicating using communication aids with graphic symbols, letters and/or words. There are few neuropsychological studies of children in this group and little is known about their cognitive functioning, including executive functions. It was hypothesized that aided communication would tax executive functions more than speech. 29 children using communication aids and 27 naturally speaking children participated. Structured tasks resembling everyday activities, where the action goals had to be reached through communication with a partner, were used to get information about executive functions. The children a directed the partner to perform actions like building a Lego tower from a model the partner could not see and b gave information about an object without naming it to a person who had to guess what object it was. The executive functions of planning, monitoring and impulse control were coded from the children’s on-task behavior. Both groups solved most of the tasks correctly, indicating that aided communicators are able to use language to direct another person to do a complex set of actions. Planning and lack of impulsivity was positively related to task success in both groups. The aided group completed significantly fewer tasks, spent longer time and showed more variation in performance than the comparison group. The aided communicators scored lower on planning and showed more impulsivity than the comparison group, while both groups showed an equal degree of monitoring of the work progress. The results are consistent with the hypothesis that aided language

  13. Prefrontal Cortex and Executive Functions in Healthy Adults: A Meta-Analysis of Structural Neuroimaging Studies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yuan, Peng; Raz, Naftali

    2014-01-01

    Lesion studies link the prefrontal cortex (PFC) to executive functions. However, the evidence from in vivo investigations in healthy people is mixed, and there are no quantitative estimates of the association strength. To examine the relationship between PFC volume and cortical thickness with executive cognition in healthy adults, we conducted a meta-analysis of studies that assessed executive functions and PFC volume (31 samples,) and PFC thickness (10 samples) in vivo, N=3272 participants. We found that larger PFC volume and greater PFC thickness were associated with better executive performance. Stronger associations between executive functions and PFC volume were linked to greater variance in the sample age but was unrelated to the mean age of a sample. Strength of association between cognitive and neuroanatomical indices depended on the executive task used in the study. PFC volume correlated stronger with Wisconsin Card Sorting Test than with digit backwards span, Trail Making Test and verbal fluency. Significant effect size was observed in lateral and medial but not orbital PFC. The results support the “bigger is better” hypothesis of brain-behavior relation in healthy adults and suggest different neural correlates across the neuropsychological tests used to assess executive functions. PMID:24568942

  14. Verbal Memory Abilities in Severe Childhood Psychiatric Disorders and the Influence of Attention and Executive Functions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kavanaugh, Brian C; Gaudet, Charles E; Dupont-Frechette, Jennifer A; Tellock, Perrin P; Maher, Isolde D; Haisley, Lauren D; Holler, Karen A

    2016-04-28

    Despite prior adult research regarding the influence of executive functions on memory performance, there has been inconsistent prior research on the role of executive functions on memory performance in children, particularly those children with severe psychiatric disorders. A medical chart review was conducted for 76 children (ages 6-12 years) who received a neuropsychological evaluation during children's psychiatric inpatient program hospitalization. A series of hierarchical regression analyses investigated the role of attention/executive and non-executive functions in verbal memory performance (immediate recall, delayed recall, and delayed recognition). Demographic and verbal measures were entered into blocks 1 and 2 for all analyses, followed by attention and executive functions (i.e., attention span, sustained attention, verbal fluency, cognitive flexibility, inhibitory control, and planning/organization). Nearly 15% of the participants displayed memory impairment. Results of regression analyses indicated attention/executive dysfunction severity predicted overall memory performance. Attention span predicted performance on all three memory conditions. Planning/organization accounted for unique variance in immediate recall condition while inhibitory control accounted for unique variance in delayed recall condition. These results indicate that verbal memory problems frequently occur in severe childhood psychiatric disorders. Further, planning/organization deficits may influence immediate recall, while inhibitory control deficits may influence delayed recall. Alternatively, delayed recognition memory may be the most resistant to the negative influence of executive deficits on verbal memory performance in childhood psychiatric disorders.

  15. Executive Function Differences Between Bilingual Arabic-English and Monolingual Arabic Children.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abdelgafar, Ghada Mohammed; Moawad, Ruba AbdelMatloub

    2015-10-01

    This study aimed to explore the differences between Arabic-English bilingual and monolingual Arabic children on a battery of executive functions. Prior research on the influence of bilingualism on cognitive abilities and executive functions has shown mixed results. Some results suggested that bilinguals perform significantly better than monolinguals, while others showed that monolinguals perform significantly better. Other studies showed no significant differences between both groups, findings which were argued to be due to methodological issues. A total of 50 Arabic monolingual and Arabic-English bilingual children ranging 7-10 years of age participated in the current study. Six executive function tasks, divided into two categories (inhibition of improper response tasks, and behavioral operational control tasks), were administered. Results did not show significant differences for most executive functions.

  16. Effects of Adult Age and Blood Pressure on Executive Function and Speed of Processing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bucur, Barbara; Madden, David J.

    2009-01-01

    Previous research has established that the effects of chronically increased blood pressure (BP) on cognition interact with adult age, but the relevant cognitive processes are not well defined. In this cross sectional study, using a sample matched for age, years of education, and sex, 134 individuals with either normal BP (n = 71) or chronically high BP (n = 63) were categorized into younger (19-39 years), middle-aged (41-58 years), and older (60-79 years) groups. Using a between-subjects ANOVA, covarying for race and years of education, composite measures of executive function and perceptual speed both exhibited age-related decline. The executive function measure, however, was associated with a differential decline in high BP older adults. This result held even when the executive function scores were covaried for speed, demonstrating an independent, age-related effect of higher BP on executive function. PMID:20209419

  17. Baroreflex sensitivity during rest and executive functioning in attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder. The TRAILS study.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dietrich, A.; Althaus, M.; Hartman, C.A.; Buitelaar, J.K.; Mindera, R.B.; Hoofdakker, B.J. van den; Hoekstra, P.J.

    2012-01-01

    Children with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) often show executive function (EF) problems and neurophysiological hypoarousal. Baroreceptor activation, as part of the baroreflex short-term blood pressure regulatory mechanism, has been linked to cortical inhibition and attenuated cogni

  18. Teachers' Understanding of the Role of Executive Functions in Mathematics Learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gilmore, Camilla; Cragg, Lucy

    2014-01-01

    Cognitive psychology research has suggested an important role for executive functions, the set of skills that monitor and control thought and action, in learning mathematics. However, there is currently little evidence about whether teachers are aware of the importance of these skills and, if so, how they come by this information. We conducted an online survey of teachers' views on the importance of a range of skills for mathematics learning. Teachers rated executive function skills, and in particular inhibition and shifting, to be important for mathematics. The value placed on executive function skills increased with increasing teaching experience. Most teachers reported that they were aware of these skills, although few knew the term “executive functions.” This awareness had come about through their teaching experience rather than from formal instruction. Researchers and teacher educators could do more to highlight the importance of these skills to trainee or new teachers. PMID:25674156

  19. Baroreflex sensitivity during rest and executive functioning in attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder. The TRAILS study

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dietrich, A.; Althaus, M.; Hartman, C.A.; Buitelaar, J.K.; Minderaa, R.B.; van den Hoofdakker, B.J.; Hoekstra, P.J.

    2012-01-01

    Children with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) often show executive function (EF) problems and neurophysiological hypoarousal. Baroreceptor activation, as part of the baroreflex short-term blood pressure regulatory mechanism, has been linked to cortical inhibition and attenuated cogni

  20. Executive Functioning Shows Differential Maturation From Early to Late Adolescence : Longitudinal Findings From a TRAILS Study

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Boelema, Sarai R.; Harakeh, Zeena; Ormel, Johan; Hartman, Catharina A.; Vollebergh, Wilma A. M.; van Zandvoort, Martine J. E.

    2014-01-01

    Objective: Maturation of executive functioning (EF) is topical, especially in relation to adolescence, yet longitudinal research covering early and late adolescence is lacking. This, however, is a prerequisite for drawing conclusions on normal cognitive development, and understanding deviant maturat

  1. Bilingualism as a potential strategy to improve executive function in preterm infants: a review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Head, Lauren M; Baralt, Melissa; Darcy Mahoney, Ashley E

    2015-01-01

    Preterm birth is associated with long-term deficits in executive functioning and cognitive performance. Using the model of brain plasticity as a theoretical framework, it is possible that preterm infants' neurodevelopmental sequelae can be altered. Evidence suggests that bilingualism confers cognitive advantages on executive functioning, so it is possible that bilingualism may improve preterm infants' neurodevelopment. However, bilingualism has only been studied in term children. This review examined literature that compared the performance of preterm-born children to term children and bilingual children to monolingual children on executive function tasks. To address cognitive disparities in preterm-born children, studies investigating the effect of bilingualism on preterm infants' executive functioning is warranted.

  2. Executive functioning predicts reading, mathematics, and theory of mind during the elementary years.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cantin, Rachelle H; Gnaedinger, Emily K; Gallaway, Kristin C; Hesson-McInnis, Matthew S; Hund, Alycia M

    2016-06-01

    The goal of this study was to specify how executive functioning components predict reading, mathematics, and theory of mind performance during the elementary years. A sample of 93 7- to 10-year-old children completed measures of working memory, inhibition, flexibility, reading, mathematics, and theory of mind. Path analysis revealed that all three executive functioning components (working memory, inhibition, and flexibility) mediated age differences in reading comprehension, whereas age predicted mathematics and theory of mind directly. In addition, reading mediated the influence of executive functioning components on mathematics and theory of mind, except that flexibility also predicted mathematics directly. These findings provide important details about the development of executive functioning, reading, mathematics, and theory of mind during the elementary years. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  3. Executive Functions: Influence of Sex, Age and Its Relationship With Intelligence

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Larissa de Oliveira e Ferreira

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available AbstractThe Tower of Hanoi is a tool used to evaluate executive functions. However, few studies describe what functions are evaluated in this test. This study investigates the executive functions, evaluated by the Tower of Hanoi (ToH, and the influence of gender, age and its relationship with intelligence. We evaluated 55 children and adolescents, between the ages of ten and 16, without diagnosed neuropsychiatric disorders. The results showed that the performance and time in to complete the Tower of Hanoi have no discriminative power when comparing age groups and sex; there was also no significant correlation found between the ToH and the execution quotient of the Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children - Third Edition (WISC III, perceptual organization and the speed of processing. Only the subtest coding were positively related to the ToH, demonstrating that these instruments may be measuring related aspects of intelligence and executive functions, namely intelligence and working memory.

  4. Teachers' Understanding of the Role of Executive Functions in Mathematics Learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gilmore, Camilla; Cragg, Lucy

    2014-09-01

    Cognitive psychology research has suggested an important role for executive functions, the set of skills that monitor and control thought and action, in learning mathematics. However, there is currently little evidence about whether teachers are aware of the importance of these skills and, if so, how they come by this information. We conducted an online survey of teachers' views on the importance of a range of skills for mathematics learning. Teachers rated executive function skills, and in particular inhibition and shifting, to be important for mathematics. The value placed on executive function skills increased with increasing teaching experience. Most teachers reported that they were aware of these skills, although few knew the term "executive functions." This awareness had come about through their teaching experience rather than from formal instruction. Researchers and teacher educators could do more to highlight the importance of these skills to trainee or new teachers.

  5. Interventions Shown to Aid Executive Function Development in Children 4 to 12 Years Old

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Adele Diamond; Kathleen Lee

    2011-01-01

    To be successful takes creativity, flexibility, self-control, and discipline. Central to all those are executive functions, including mentally playing with ideas, giving a considered rather than an impulsive response, and staying focused...

  6. Revealing hot executive function in children with motor coordination problems: What's the go?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Rahimi-Golkhandan, S.; Steenbergen, B.; Piek, J.P.; Caeyenberghs, K.; Wilson, P.H.

    2016-01-01

    Recent research suggests that children with Developmental Coordination Disorder (DCD) often show deficits in executive functioning (EF) and, more specifically, the ability to use inhibitory control in 'hot', emotionally rewarding contexts. This study optimized the assessment of sensitivity of childr

  7. Specific early number skills mediate the association between executive functioning skills and mathematics achievement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fuhs, Mary Wagner; Hornburg, Caroline Byrd; McNeil, Nicole M

    2016-08-01

    A growing literature reports significant associations between children's executive functioning skills and their mathematics achievement. The purpose of this study was to examine if specific early number skills, such as quantity discrimination, number line estimation, number sets identification, fast counting, and number word comprehension, mediate this association. In 141 kindergarteners, cross-sectional analyses controlling for IQ revealed that number sets identification (but not the other early number skills) mediated the association between executive functioning skills and mathematics achievement. A longitudinal analysis showed that higher executive functioning skills predicted higher number sets identification in kindergarten, which in turn predicted growth in mathematics achievement from kindergarten to second grade. Results suggest that executive functioning skills may help children quickly and accurately identify number sets as wholes instead of getting distracted by the individual components of the sets, and this focus on sets, in turn, may help children learn more advanced mathematics concepts in the early elementary grades. (PsycINFO Database Record

  8. Mapping the association of global executive functioning onto diverse measures of psychopathic traits

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Baskin-Sommers, A.R.; Brazil, I.A.; Ryan, J.; Kohlenberg, N.; Neumann, C.S.; Newman, J.P.

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Psychopathic individuals display a callous-coldhearted approach to interpersonal and affective situations and engage in impulsive and antisocial behaviors. Despite early conceptualizations suggesting that psychopathy is related to enhanced cognitive functioning, research examining executive

  9. Characterizing Cognitive Aging of Working Memory and Executive Function in Animal Models

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jennifer Lynn Bizon

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available Executive functions supported by prefrontal cortical systems provide essential control and planning mechanisms to guide goal-directed behavior. As such, age-related alterations in executive functions can mediate profound and widespread deficits on a diverse array of neurocognitive processes. Many of the critical neuroanatomical and functional characteristics of prefrontal cortex are preserved in rodents, allowing for meaningful cross-species comparisons relevant to the study of cognitive aging. In particular, as rodents lend themselves to genetic, cellular and biochemical approaches, rodent models of executive function stand to significantly contribute to our understanding of the critical neurobiological mechanisms that mediate decline of executive processes across the lifespan. Moreover, rodent analogues of executive functions that decline in human aging represent an essential component of a targeted, rational approach for developing and testing effective treatment and prevention therapies for age-related cognitive decline. This paper reviews behavioral approaches used to study executive function in rodents, with a focus on those assays that share a foundation in the psychological and neuroanatomical constructs important for human aging. A particular emphasis is placed on behavioral approaches used to assess working memory and cognitive flexibility, which are sensitive to decline with age across species and for which strong rodent models currently exist. In addition, other approaches in rodent behavior that have potential for providing analogues to functions that reliably decline to human aging (e.g., information processing speed are discussed.

  10. Characterizing cognitive aging of working memory and executive function in animal models.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bizon, Jennifer L; Foster, Thomas C; Alexander, Gene E; Glisky, Elizabeth L

    2012-01-01

    Executive functions supported by prefrontal cortical (PFC) systems provide essential control and planning mechanisms to guide goal-directed behavior. As such, age-related alterations in executive functions can mediate profound and widespread deficits on a diverse array of neurocognitive processes. Many of the critical neuroanatomical and functional characteristics of prefrontal cortex are preserved in rodents, allowing for meaningful cross species comparisons relevant to the study of cognitive aging. In particular, as rodents lend themselves to genetic, cellular and biochemical approaches, rodent models of executive function stand to significantly contribute to our understanding of the critical neurobiological mechanisms that mediate decline of executive processes across the lifespan. Moreover, rodent analogs of executive functions that decline in human aging represent an essential component of a targeted, rational approach for developing and testing effective treatment and prevention therapies for age-related cognitive decline. This paper reviews behavioral approaches used to study executive function in rodents, with a focus on those assays that share a foundation in the psychological and neuroanatomical constructs important for human aging. A particular emphasis is placed on behavioral approaches used to assess working memory and cognitive flexibility, which are sensitive to decline with age across species and for which strong rodent models currently exist. In addition, other approaches in rodent behavior that have potential for providing analogs to functions that reliably decline to human aging (e.g., information processing speed) are discussed.

  11. Real-Life Impact of Executive Function Impairments in Adults Who Were Born Very Preterm.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kroll, Jasmin; Karolis, Vyacheslav; Brittain, Philip J; Tseng, Chieh-En Jane; Froudist-Walsh, Sean; Murray, Robin M; Nosarti, Chiara

    2017-05-01

    Children and adolescents who were born very preterm (≤32 weeks' gestation) are vulnerable to experiencing cognitive problems, including in executive function. However, it remains to be established whether cognitive deficits are evident in adulthood and whether these exert a significant effect on an individual's real-lifeachievement. Using a cross-sectional design, we tested a range of neurocognitive abilities, with a focus on executive function, in a sample of 122 very preterm individuals and 89 term-born controls born between 1979 and 1984. Associations between executive function and a range of achievement measures, indicative of a successful transition to adulthood, were examined. Very preterm adults performed worse compared to controls on measures of intellectual ability and executive function with moderate to large effect sizes. They also demonstrated significantly lower achievement levels in terms of years spent in education, employment status, and on a measure of functioning in work and social domains. Results of regression analysis indicated a stronger positive association between executive function and real-life achievement in the very preterm group compared to controls. Very preterm born adults demonstrate executive function impairments compared to full-term controls, and these are associated with lower achievement in several real-life domains. (JINS, 2017, 23, 381-389).

  12. Bilingualism and the Development of Executive Function: The Role of Attention

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bialystok, Ellen

    2015-01-01

    This paper reviews research examining the effect of bilingualism on children’s cognitive development, and in particular, executive function. Studies reporting bilingual advantages in various tasks are described with the purpose of identifying the process or executive function component that might be responsible for this bilingual advantage. Several possibilities are discussed, such as inhibitory control. Finally, the role of attention is proposed as a fundamental process that initiates developmental differences in bilingual children from as early as infancy. PMID:26019718

  13. Bilingualism and the Development of Executive Function: The Role of Attention

    OpenAIRE

    Bialystok, Ellen

    2015-01-01

    This paper reviews research examining the effect of bilingualism on children’s cognitive development, and in particular, executive function. Studies reporting bilingual advantages in various tasks are described with the purpose of identifying the process or executive function component that might be responsible for this bilingual advantage. Several possibilities are discussed, such as inhibitory control. Finally, the role of attention is proposed as a fundamental process that initiates develo...

  14. The impact of motivation and teachers’ autonomy support on children’s executive functions

    OpenAIRE

    Zrinka eSosic-Vasic; Oliver eKeis; Maren eLau; Manfred eSpitzer; Judith eStreb

    2015-01-01

    The present study investigates the interplay of executive functions, motivation, and teacher’s autonomy support in school context. In a cross-sectional study design 208 students from different school types completed a standardized motivation questionnaire and processed two executive function tasks. All teachers who teach these students were asked about their autonomy supporting behavior by a standardized test. Multilevel analyses assessed the effects of the student’s motivation and their teac...

  15. Teachers’ Beliefs and Practices Regarding the Role of Executive Functions in Reading and Arithmetic

    OpenAIRE

    Shirley Rapoport; Orly Rubinsten; Tami Katzir

    2016-01-01

    The current study investigated early elementary school teachers’ beliefs and practices regarding the role of Executive Functions in reading and arithmetic. A new research questionnaire was developed and judged by professionals in the academia and the field. Reponses were obtained from 144 teachers from Israel. Factor analysis divided the questionnaire into three valid and reliable subscales, reflecting (1) beliefs regarding the contribution of executive functions to reading and arithmetic...

  16. Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) symptoms, anxiety symptoms, and executive functioning in emerging adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jarrett, Matthew A

    2016-02-01

    The current study examined attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and anxiety symptoms in relation to self-reported executive functioning deficits in emerging adults. College students (N = 421; ages 17-25; 73.1% female) completed self-reports of ADHD, anxiety, and executive functioning in a laboratory setting. Structural equation modeling analyses revealed that self-reported executive functioning deficits were significantly related to all 3 symptom domains. Executive functioning deficits were most strongly related to inattention followed by hyperactivity/impulsivity and anxiety. Analyses based on clinical groups revealed that groups with ADHD and comorbid anxiety showed greater deficits on self-regulation of emotion and self-organization/problem solving than those with ADHD only or anxiety only. Groups with ADHD showed greater deficits with self-motivation and self-restraint than those with anxiety only. All clinical groups differed from a control group on executive functioning deficits. Overall, anxiety symptoms appear to be associated with college students' self-reported executive functioning deficits above and beyond relationships with ADHD symptomatology. Further, those with ADHD and anxiety appear to show increased difficulties with self-regulation of emotion and self-organization/problem solving, a domain which appears to overlap substantially with working memory. Future studies should seek to replicate our findings with a clinical population, utilize both report-based and laboratory task measures of executive functioning, and integrate both state and trait anxiety indices into study designs. Finally, future studies should seek to determine how executive functioning deficits can be best ameliorated in emerging adults with ADHD and anxiety. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2016 APA, all rights reserved).

  17. Lack of executive function deficits among adult ADHD individuals from a Brazilian clinical sample

    OpenAIRE

    Eloisa Saboya; Gabriel Coutinho; Daniel Segenreich; Vanessa Ayrão; Paulo Mattos

    2009-01-01

    Abstract Executive function deficits have been previously documented in individuals with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). Objective: The current study aimed to compare measures of executive functions among a clinical sample of adults with ADHD and normal control subjects, matched for age, gender and education. Methods: Twenty-three self-referred adults diagnosed with ADHD according to DSM-IV criteria, and twenty-five control subjects were assessed using a neuropsychological ...

  18. Executive Functioning in Children with ASD: An Analysis of the BRIEF

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blijd-Hoogewys, E. M.; Bezemer, M. L.; van Geert, P. L.

    2014-01-01

    The Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Functions (BRIEF) screens for executive function deficits in 5- to 18-year-olds. Data of three autism subgroups, according to DSM-IV-TR criteria (N = 35 Autistic Disorder, N = 27 Asperger's Disorder and N = 65 PDD-NOS), were analyzed. The total group has elevated scores on almost all BRIEF scales.…

  19. Bilingualism and the Development of Executive Function: The Role of Attention.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bialystok, Ellen

    2015-06-01

    This paper reviews research examining the effect of bilingualism on children's cognitive development, and in particular, executive function. Studies reporting bilingual advantages in various tasks are described with the purpose of identifying the process or executive function component that might be responsible for this bilingual advantage. Several possibilities are discussed, such as inhibitory control. Finally, the role of attention is proposed as a fundamental process that initiates developmental differences in bilingual children from as early as infancy.

  20. Executive function and attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder in Ugandan children with perinatal HIV exposure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burkey, M D; Murray, S M; Bangirana, P; Familiar, I; Opoka, R O; Nakasujja, N; Boivin, M; Bass, J K

    2015-01-01

    Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is among the most commonly diagnosed mental disorders in childhood and is associated with substantial deficits in executive functioning and lost academic and occupational attainment. This study evaluates symptoms of ADHD and their association with neurocognitive deficits in a cohort of rural Ugandan children who were born to HIV-infected mothers. We assessed ADHD symptoms and executive function (including memory and attention) in a non-clinical sample of children born to HIV-infected mothers in rural eastern Uganda. Analyses included assessments of the psychometric properties, factor structure, and convergent and discriminant validity of the ADHD measure (ADHD-Rating Scale-IV); and executive function deficits in children meeting symptom criteria for ADHD. 232 children [54% female; mean age 7.8 years (s.d. 2.0)] were assessed for ADHD and executive function deficits. The ADHD measure showed good internal consistency (α = 0.85.) Confirmatory factor analysis showed an acceptable fit for the diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders (DSM-5) two-factor model. Subjects meeting DSM-5 symptom criteria for ADHD had worse parent-rated executive function on six out of seven subscales. Our results demonstrate structural validity of the ADHD measure with this population, strong associations between ADHD symptom severity and poorer executive function, and higher levels of executive function problems in perinatally HIV-exposed Ugandan children with ADHD. These findings suggest that ADHD may be an important neurocognitive disorder associated with executive function problems among children in sub-Saharan African settings where perinatal HIV exposure is common.

  1. The Executive Functions of Rejected Children in an Urban Elementary School

    Science.gov (United States)

    Naylor, Gregory

    2013-01-01

    The relationship between Executive Functions and Peer Rejection was explored. Thirty-Five students in an urban elementary school, (mean 10.7 years of age (sd=2.8), 34% male, and 88% African American) completed measures of executive functions: KABC-II Rover, The Wisconsin Card Sort and NEPSY-II Statue (below age 9) or The Iowa Gambling Task (age 9…

  2. Less-structured time in children's daily lives predicts self-directed executive functioning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barker, Jane E; Semenov, Andrei D; Michaelson, Laura; Provan, Lindsay S; Snyder, Hannah R; Munakata, Yuko

    2014-01-01

    Executive functions (EFs) in childhood predict important life outcomes. Thus, there is great interest in attempts to improve EFs early in life. Many interventions are led by trained adults, including structured training activities in the lab, and less-structured activities implemented in schools. Such programs have yielded gains in children's externally-driven executive functioning, where they are instructed on what goal-directed actions to carry out and when. However, it is less clear how children's experiences relate to their development of self-directed executive functioning, where they must determine on their own what goal-directed actions to carry out and when. We hypothesized that time spent in less-structured activities would give children opportunities to practice self-directed executive functioning, and lead to benefits. To investigate this possibility, we collected information from parents about their 6-7 year-old children's daily, annual, and typical schedules. We categorized children's activities as "structured" or "less-structured" based on categorization schemes from prior studies on child leisure time use. We assessed children's self-directed executive functioning using a well-established verbal fluency task, in which children generate members of a category and can decide on their own when to switch from one subcategory to another. The more time that children spent in less-structured activities, the better their self-directed executive functioning. The opposite was true of structured activities, which predicted poorer self-directed executive functioning. These relationships were robust (holding across increasingly strict classifications of structured and less-structured time) and specific (time use did not predict externally-driven executive functioning). We discuss implications, caveats, and ways in which potential interpretations can be distinguished in future work, to advance an understanding of this fundamental aspect of growing up.

  3. Fantasy Orientation Constructs and Related Executive Function Development in Preschool: Developmental Benefits to Executive Functions by Being a Fantasy-Oriented Child

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pierucci, Jillian M.; O'Brien, Christopher T.; McInnis, Melissa A.; Gilpin, Ansley Tullos; Barber, Angela B.

    2014-01-01

    This study explored unique constructs of fantasy orientation and whether there are developmental benefits for fantasy-oriented children. By age 3, children begin developing executive functions, with some children exhibiting high fantasy orientation in their cognitions and behaviors. Preschoolers ("n" = 106) completed fantasy orientation…

  4. Exploring the Incorporation of Executive Functions in Intelligence Testing: Factor Analysis of the WAIS-III and Traditional Tasks of Executive Functioning

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Aken, L. van; Kessels, R.P.C.; Wingbermühle, P.A.M.; Wiltink, M.; Heijden, P.T. van der; Egger, J.I.M.

    2014-01-01

    The aim of this study was to examine the relationship between subtests of the Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale – third edition (WAIS-III) and executive functions. The Behavioural Assessment of the Dysexecutive Syndrome, Wisconsin Card Sorting Test, and Stroop Color-Word Test were administered to a

  5. Age-related commonalities and differences in the relationship between executive functions and intelligence: Analysis of the NAB executive functions module and WAIS-IV scores.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buczylowska, Dorota; Petermann, Franz

    2017-01-01

    Data from five subtests of the Executive Functions Module of the German Neuropsychological Assessment Battery (NAB) and all ten core subtests of the German Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale - Fourth Edition (WAIS-IV) were used to examine the relationship between executive functions and intelligence in a comparison of two age groups: individuals aged 18-59 years and individuals aged 60-88 years. The NAB subtests Categories and Word Generation demonstrated a consistent correlation pattern for both age groups. However, the NAB Judgment subtest correlated more strongly with three WAIS-IV indices, the Full Scale IQ (FSIQ), and the General Ability Index (GAI) in the older adult group than in the younger group. Additionally, in the 60-88 age group, the Executive Functions Index (EFI) was more strongly correlated with the Verbal Comprehension Index (VCI) than with the Perceptual Reasoning Index (PRI). Both age groups demonstrated a strong association of the EFI with the FSIQ and the Working Memory Index (WMI). The results imply the potential diagnostic utility of the Judgment subtest and a significant relationship between executive functioning and crystallized intelligence at older ages. Furthermore, it may be concluded that there is a considerable age-independent overlap between the EFI and general intelligence, as well as between the EFI and working memory.

  6. Fantasy Orientation Constructs and Related Executive Function Development in Preschool: Developmental Benefits to Executive Functions by Being a Fantasy-Oriented Child

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pierucci, Jillian M.; O'Brien, Christopher T.; McInnis, Melissa A.; Gilpin, Ansley Tullos; Barber, Angela B.

    2014-01-01

    This study explored unique constructs of fantasy orientation and whether there are developmental benefits for fantasy-oriented children. By age 3, children begin developing executive functions, with some children exhibiting high fantasy orientation in their cognitions and behaviors. Preschoolers ("n" = 106) completed fantasy orientation…

  7. Meta-analysis of executive functioning in ecstasy/polydrug users.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roberts, C A; Jones, A; Montgomery, C

    2016-06-01

    Ecstasy/3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA) use is proposed to cause damage to serotonergic (5-HT) axons in humans. Therefore, users should show deficits in cognitive processes that rely on serotonin-rich, prefrontal areas of the brain. However, there is inconsistency in findings to support this hypothesis. The aim of the current study was to examine deficits in executive functioning in ecstasy users compared with controls using meta-analysis. We identified k = 39 studies, contributing 89 effect sizes, investigating executive functioning in ecstasy users and polydrug-using controls. We compared function-specific task performance in 1221 current ecstasy users and 1242 drug-using controls, from tasks tapping the executive functions - updating, switching, inhibition and access to long-term memory. The significant main effect demonstrated overall executive dysfunction in ecstasy users [standardized mean difference (SMD) = -0.18, 95% confidence interval (CI) -0.26 to -0.11, Z = 5.05, p executive functions. Ecstasy users showed significant performance deficits in access (SMD = -0.33, 95% CI -0.46 to -0.19, Z = 4.72, p executive function in ecstasy users to date and provides a behavioural correlate of potential serotonergic neurotoxicity.

  8. Executive functioning deficits and childhood trauma in juvenile violent offenders in China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zou, Zhili; Meng, Huaqing; Ma, Zhongrui; Deng, Wei; Du, Lian; Wang, Hui; Chen, Pinhong; Hu, Hua

    2013-05-30

    A large body of evidence indicates that violent offenders have executive functioning deficits. However, previous studies have not considered childhood trauma, which is likely to influence the executive functioning of violent offenders. The aim of the present study was to compare the difference of executive functioning among juvenile violent offenders, with non-violent offenders and normal controls, and then to analyse whether executive functioning was affected independently of childhood trauma. In addition to using a battery of tests assessing executive functioning including the Intra/Extradimensional Shift Test(IED), the Stockings of Cambridge Test (SOC), and the Spatial Working Memory Test (SWM) from the Cambridge Automated Neuropsychological Testing Battery (CANTAB), the short form of the Chinese Revision of the Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale (WAIS-RC) and Childhood Trauma Questionnaire-28 item Short Form (CTQ) were also used among 107 violent offenders, 107 non-violent offenders and 107 normal controls. Our results showed that both offender groups obtained significantly lower estimated Intelligence Quotient (IQ) scores and experienced more childhood trauma than did normal controls. Violent offenders showed impaired executive functioning on tasks of attention set-shifting, working memory and planning. Finally, spatial working memory (SWM) deficits, particularly SWM strategy scores, may be associated with childhood trauma.

  9. Theory of mind and executive function during middle childhood across cultures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Zhenlin; Devine, Rory T; Wong, Keri K; Hughes, Claire

    2016-09-01

    Previous studies with preschoolers have reported "East-West" contrasts in children's executive function (East>West) and theory of mind (Eastchildren from the United Kingdom and Hong Kong aimed to test competing accounts of these contrasts that focus on either global effects of culture or more specific effects of pedagogical experience. Both groups of children in Hong Kong outperformed the British children on executive function tasks. That is, with respect to executive function, general cultural influences appear to be salient. In contrast, compared with their U.K. counterparts, children attending local schools in Hong Kong (but not those attending British-based international schools in Hong Kong) performed poorly on age-appropriate tests of theory of mind. With respect to theory of mind, therefore, pedagogical experiences appear to be more salient than factors related to the broad contrast between individualist and collectivist cultures. Our findings also contribute to the debate surrounding the relationship between theory of mind and executive function; although scores on these two sets of tasks were robustly correlated within each country, the double dissociation between delayed theory of mind but superior executive function for children in local schools in Hong Kong compared with their U.K. peers suggests that variation in executive function may be necessary but is not sufficient to explain variation in theory of mind.

  10. Executive functions and consumption of fruits/ vegetables and high saturated fat foods in young adults.

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    Limbers, Christine A; Young, Danielle

    2015-05-01

    Executive functions play a critical role in regulating eating behaviors and have been shown to be associated with overeating which over time can result in overweight and obesity. There has been a paucity of research examining the associations among healthy dietary behaviors and executive functions utilizing behavioral rating scales of executive functioning. The objective of the present cross-sectional study was to evaluate the associations among fruit and vegetable consumption, intake of foods high in saturated fat, and executive functions using the Behavioral Rating Inventory of Executive Functioning-Adult Version. A total of 240 university students completed the Behavioral Rating Inventory of Executive Functioning-Adult Version, the 26-Item Eating Attitudes Test, and the Diet subscale of the Summary of Diabetes Self-Care Activities Questionnaire. Multiple linear regression analysis was conducted with two separate models in which fruit and vegetable consumption and saturated fat intake were the outcomes. Demographic variables, body mass index, and eating styles were controlled for in the analysis. Better initiation skills were associated with greater intake of fruits and vegetables in the last 7 days (standardized beta = -0.17; p fruit and vegetable consumption are distinct from those that predict avoidance of foods high in saturated fat. Future research should investigate whether continued skill enhancement in initiation and inhibition following standard behavioral interventions improves long-term maintenance of weight loss.

  11. Effects of early psychosocial deprivation on the development of memory and executive function

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Karen J Bos

    2009-09-01

    Full Text Available This study investigated the effects of early institutional care on memory and executive functioning. Subjects were participants in the Bucharest Early Intervention Project (BEIP and included institutionalized children, children with a history of institutionalization who were assigned to a foster care intervention, and community children in Bucharest, Romania. Memory and executive functioning were assessed at the age of eight years using the Cambridge Neuropsychological Test and Automated Battery (CANTAB. As expected, children with a history of early institutional care performed worse on measures of both visual memory and executive functioning compared to their peers without a history of institutional care. In comparing children randomly assigned to the foster care intervention with their peers who had continued care in the institution, initial comparisons did not show significant differences on any of the memory or executive functioning outcomes. However, for one of the measures of executive functioning, after controlling for birth weight, head circumference, and duration of time spent in early institutional care, the foster care intervention was a significant predictor of scores. These results support and extend previous findings of deficits in memory and executive functioning among school-age children with a history of early deprivation due to institutional care. This study has implications for the millions of children who continue to experience the psychosocial deprivation associated with early institutional care.

  12. Attentional costs of visually guided walking: effects of age, executive function and stepping-task demands.

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    Mazaheri, Masood; Roerdink, Melvyn; Bood, Robert Jan; Duysens, Jacques; Beek, Peter J; Peper, C Lieke E

    2014-01-01

    During walking, attention needs to be flexibly allocated to deal with varying environmental constraints. This ability may be affected by aging and lower overall executive function. The present study examined the influence of aging and executive function on the attentional costs of visually guided walking under different task demands. Three groups, young adults (n=15) and elderly adults with higher (n=16) and lower (n=10) executive function, walked on a treadmill in three conditions: uncued walking and walking with regular and irregular patterns of visual stepping targets projected onto the belt. Attentional costs were assessed using a secondary probe reaction time task and corrected by subtracting baseline single-task reaction time, yielding an estimate of the additional attentional costs of each walking condition. We found that uncued walking was more attentionally demanding for elderly than for young participants. In young participants, the attentional costs increased significantly from uncued to regularly cued to irregularly cued walking, whereas for the higher executive function group, attentional costs only increased significantly from regularly cued to irregularly cued walking. For the group with lower executive function, no significant differences were observed. The observed decreased flexibility of elderly, especially those with lower executive function, to allocate additional attentional resources to more challenging walking conditions may be attributed to the already increased attentional costs of uncued walking, presumably required for visuomotor and/or balance control of walking.

  13. Benefits of regular aerobic exercise for executive functioning in healthy populations.

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    Guiney, Hayley; Machado, Liana

    2013-02-01

    Research suggests that regular aerobic exercise has the potential to improve executive functioning, even in healthy populations. The purpose of this review is to elucidate which components of executive functioning benefit from such exercise in healthy populations. In light of the developmental time course of executive functions, we consider separately children, young adults, and older adults. Data to date from studies of aging provide strong evidence of exercise-linked benefits related to task switching, selective attention, inhibition of prepotent responses, and working memory capacity; furthermore, cross-sectional fitness data suggest that working memory updating could potentially benefit as well. In young adults, working memory updating is the main executive function shown to benefit from regular exercise, but cross-sectional data further suggest that task-switching and post error performance may also benefit. In children, working memory capacity has been shown to benefit, and cross-sectional data suggest potential benefits for selective attention and inhibitory control. Although more research investigating exercise-related benefits for specific components of executive functioning is clearly needed in young adults and children, when considered across the age groups, ample evidence indicates that regular engagement in aerobic exercise can provide a simple means for healthy people to optimize a range of executive functions.

  14. Family socioeconomic status and child executive functions: the roles of language, home environment, and single parenthood.

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    Sarsour, Khaled; Sheridan, Margaret; Jutte, Douglas; Nuru-Jeter, Amani; Hinshaw, Stephen; Boyce, W Thomas

    2011-01-01

    The association between family socioeconomic status (SES) and child executive functions is well-documented. However, few studies have examined the role of potential mediators and moderators. We studied the independent and interactive associations between family SES and single parenthood to predict child executive functions of inhibitory control, cognitive flexibility, and working memory and examined child expressive language abilities and family home environment as potential mediators of these associations. Sixty families from diverse SES backgrounds with a school-age target child (mean [SD] age = 9.9 [0.96] years) were evaluated. Child executive functioning was measured using a brief battery. The quality of the home environment was evaluated using the Home Observation for the Measurement of the Environment inventory. Family SES predicted the three child executive functions under study. Single parent and family SES were interactively associated with children's inhibitory control and cognitive flexibility; such that children from low SES families who were living with one parent performed less well on executive function tests than children from similarly low SES who were living with two parents. Parental responsivity, enrichment activities and family companionship mediated the association between family SES and child inhibitory control and working memory. This study demonstrates that family SES inequalities are associated with inequalities in home environments and with inequalities in child executive functions. The impact of these disparities as they unfold in the lives of typically developing children merits further investigation and understanding.

  15. Executive function predicts the development of play skills for verbal preschoolers with autism spectrum disorders.

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    Faja, Susan; Dawson, Geraldine; Sullivan, Katherine; Meltzoff, Andrew N; Estes, Annette; Bernier, Raphael

    2016-12-01

    Executive function and play skills develop in early childhood and are linked to cognitive and language ability. The present study examined these abilities longitudinally in two groups with autism spectrum disorder-a group with higher initial language (n = 30) and a group with lower initial language ability (n = 36). Among the lower language group, concurrent nonverbal cognitive ability contributed most to individual differences in executive function and play skills. For the higher language group, executive function during preschool significantly predicted play ability at age 6 over and above intelligence, but early play did not predict later executive function. These results suggested that factors related to the development of play and executive function differ for subgroups of children with different language abilities and that early executive function skills may be critical in order for verbal children with autism to develop play. Autism Res 2016, 9: 1274-1284. © 2016 International Society for Autism Research, Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2016 International Society for Autism Research, Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  16. The Contributions of Parental Management Language to Executive Function in Preschool Children

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    Bindman, Samantha W.; Hindman, Annemarie H.; Bowles, Ryan P.; Morrison, Frederick J.

    2013-01-01

    This study investigated relations between preschoolers’ emergent executive function skills and their interactions with parents, with particular focus on the verbal utterances parents use to guide children’s behavior (i.e., management language). Parent-child dyads (N = 127) were videotaped during a structured play task and the frequency of two types of management language, Direction (high control) and Suggestion (low control), was observed. Children’s executive function was assessed using the Head-Toes-Knees-Shoulders (HTKS) task. Latent growth modeling was used to investigate relations between management language and the development of children’s executive function. Direction language (i.e., commands) was negatively associated with children’s age three executive function but not significantly related to the rate of executive function development over time. Conversely, Suggestion language (i.e., questions and statements that offer children some degree of choice) was positively related to executive function at age three but negatively related to growth. The potential importance of management language as a parenting behavior that contributes to various aspects of children’s self-regulation during preschool and kindergarten is discussed. PMID:23997425

  17. Motor and Executive Function Profiles in Adult Residents ...

    Science.gov (United States)

    Objective: Exposure to elevated levels of manganese (Mn) may be associated with tremor, motor and executive dysfunction (EF), clinically resembling Parkinson’s disease (PD). PD research has identified tremor-dominant (TD) and non-tremor dominant (NTD) profiles. NTD PD presents with bradykinesia, rigidity, and postural sway, and is associated with EF impairment with lower quality of life (QoL). Presence and impact of tremor, motor, and executive dysfunction profiles on health-related QoL and life satisfaction were examined in air-Mn exposed residents of two Ohio, USA towns. Participants and Methods: From two Ohio towns exposed to air-Mn, 186 residents (76 males) aged 30-75 years were administered measures of EF (Animal Naming, ACT, Rey-O Copy, Stroop Color-Word, and Trails B), motor and tremor symptoms (UPDRS), QoL (BRFSS), life satisfaction (SWLS), and positive symptom distress (SCL-90-R). Air-Mn exposure in the two towns was modeled with 10 years of air-monitoring data. Cluster analyses detected the presence of symptom profiles by grouping together residents with similar scores on these measures. Results: Overall, mean air-Mn concentration for the two towns was 0.53 µg/m3 (SD=.92). Two-step cluster analyses identified TD and NTD symptom profiles. Residents in the NTD group lacked EF impairment; EF impairment represented a separate profile. An unimpaired group also emerged. The NTD and EF impairment groups were qualitatively similar, with relatively lo

  18. Independence of hot and cold executive function deficits in high-functioning adults with autism spectrum disorder

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David Laird Zimmerman

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available Individuals with autistic spectrum disorder (ASD display diverse deficits in social, cognitive and behavioral functioning. To date, there has been mixed findings on the profile of executive function deficits for high-functioning adults (IQ >70 with ASD. A conceptual distinction is commonly made between cold and hot executive functions. Cold executive functions refer to mechanistic higher-order cognitive operations (e.g., working memory, whereas hot executive functions entail cognitive abilities supported by emotional awareness and social perception (e.g., social cognition. This study aimed to determine the independence of deficits in hot and cold executive functions for high-functioning adults with ASD. Forty-two adults with ASD (64% male, aged 18-66 years and 40 age and gender matched controls were administered The Awareness of Social Inference Test (TASIT; emotion recognition and social inference, Letter Number Sequencing (working memory and Hayling Sentence Completion Test (response initiation and suppression. Between-group analyses identified that the ASD group performed significantly worse than matched controls on all measures of cold and hot executive functions (d = .54-1.5. Hierarchical multiple regression analyses revealed that the ASD sample performed more poorly on emotion recognition and social inference tasks than matched controls after controlling for cold executive functions and employment status. The findings also indicated that the ability to recognise emotions and make social inferences was supported by working memory and response initiation and suppression processes. Overall, this study supports the distinction between hot and cold executive function impairments for adults with ASD. Moreover, it advances understanding of higher-order impairments underlying social interaction difficulties for this population which, in turn, may assist with diagnosis and inform intervention programs.

  19. Parent-rated emotional-behavioral and executive functioning in childhood epilepsy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kavanaugh, Brian C; Scarborough, Vanessa Ramos; Salorio, Cynthia F

    2015-01-01

    The present study examined clinical and demographic risk factors associated with parent-rated emotional-behavioral and executive functioning in children and adolescents with epilepsy. The medical records of 152 children and adolescents with epilepsy referred for neuropsychological evaluation were reviewed. Results indicated that the sample displayed significantly elevated symptoms across the emotional-behavioral and executive domains assessed. Executive functioning and behavioral symptoms had the highest rates of clinically elevated scores, with lowest rates of elevated scores in internalizing and externalizing emotional problems. Only 34% of those participants with clinically significant emotional-behavioral or executive functioning difficulties had a history of psychological or counseling services, highlighting the underserved mental health needs of this population. In regard to clinical factors, the majority of seizure-related variables were not associated with emotional-behavioral or executive functioning. However, the frequency of seizures (i.e., seizure status) was associated with behavioral regulation aspects of executive functioning, and the age at evaluation was associated with externalizing problems and behavioral symptoms. Family psychiatric history (with the exception of ADHD) was associated with all domains of executive and emotional-behavioral functioning. In summary, emotional-behavioral and executive functioning difficulties frequently co-occur with seizures in childhood epilepsy, with both seizure-related and demographic factors contributing to the presentation of such neurobehavioral comorbidities. The present findings provide treatment providers of childhood epilepsy with important information to assist in better identifying children and adolescents who may be at risk for neurobehavioral comorbidities and may benefit from intervention.

  20. Functional mobility and executive function in elderly diabetics and non-diabetics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alvarenga, Patrícia P; Pereira, Daniele S; Anjos, Daniela M C

    2010-01-01

    Elderly diabetics tend to show cognitive deficits related to more complex processes such as the executive function, which can lead to a greater risk of falls. The aims of this study were to compare the functional mobility, the risk of falls and the executive function among elderly with and without type 2 diabetes, and to check the correlation between these variables. Forty community elderly participated in the study and were divided into two groups: G1 elderly with type 2 diabetes and G2 elderly without diabetes, being the variables age, body mass index and gender similar between the groups. The functional mobility and the risk of falls were assessed by the "Timed Up and Go" test (TUG and cognitive TUG) and the executive function was assessed by the Verbal Fluency Test (VFT) (animal category). Elderly with diabetes showed worse performance in the verbal fluency test (G1:14.9 ± 4.5; G2:17.7 ± 5.6; p = 0.031). A statistically between-group difference was observed regarding the functional mobility; being the G1 presenting worse performance in TUG (G1:10.5 ± 1.8 sec; G2:8.9 ± 1.9 sec; p = 0.01) and cognitive TUG (G1:13.9 ± 3.2 sec; G2:10.9 ± 2.3 sec; p = 0.004) tests. A significant correlation was observed between the cognitive TUG and VFT only in G1 (G1: Spearman's rho = -0.535; p = 0.015; G2: Spearman's rho =-0.250; p = 0.288). Diabetics presented worse performance in the functional mobility and in the verbal fluency test than non-diabetics elderly that suggests a greater risk of falls for the elderly with diabetes. The inclusion of these evaluation parameters for diabetics on the physical therapy clinical practice is crucial in order to maintain the functionality and to prevent falls.

  1. The longitudinal development of social and executive functions in late adolescence and early adulthood.

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    Taylor, Sophie J; Barker, Lynne A; Heavey, Lisa; McHale, Sue

    2015-01-01

    Our earlier work suggests that, executive functions and social cognition show protracted development into late adolescence and early adulthood (Taylor et al., 2013). However, it remains unknown whether these functions develop linearly or non-linearly corresponding to dynamic changes to white matter density at these age ranges. Executive functions are particularly in demand during the transition to independence and autonomy associated with this age range (Ahmed and Miller, 2011). Previous research examining executive function (Romine and Reynolds, 2005) and social cognition (Dumontheil et al., 2010a) in late adolescence has utilized a cross sectional design. The current study employed a longitudinal design with 58 participants aged 17, 18, and 19 years completing social cognition and executive function tasks, Wechsler Abbreviated Scale of Intelligence (Wechsler, 1999), Positive and Negative Affect Schedule (Watson et al., 1988), and Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (Zigmond and Snaith, 1983) at Time 1 with follow up testing 12-16 months later. Inhibition, rule detection, strategy generation and planning executive functions and emotion recognition with dynamic stimuli showed longitudinal development between time points. Self-report empathy and emotion recognition functions using visual static and auditory stimuli were stable by age 17 whereas concept formation declined between time points. The protracted development of some functions may reflect continued brain maturation into late adolescence and early adulthood including synaptic pruning (Sowell et al., 2001) and changes to functional connectivity (Stevens et al., 2007) and/or environmental change. Clinical implications, such as assessing the effectiveness of rehabilitation following Head Injury, are discussed.

  2. Emotion suppression moderates the quadratic association between RSA and executive function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spangler, Derek P; Bell, Martha Ann; Deater-Deckard, Kirby

    2015-09-01

    There is uncertainty about whether respiratory sinus arrhythmia (RSA), a cardiac marker of adaptive emotion regulation, is involved in relatively low or high executive function performance. In the present study, we investigated (a) whether RSA during rest and tasks predict both relatively low and high executive function within a larger quadratic association among the two variables, and (b) the extent to which this quadratic trend was moderated by individual differences in emotion regulation. To achieve these aims, a sample of ethnically and socioeconomically diverse women self-reported reappraisal and emotion suppression. They next experienced a 2-min resting period during which electrocardiogram (ECG) was continually assessed. In the next phase, the women completed an array of executive function and nonexecutive cognitive tasks while ECG was measured throughout. As anticipated, resting RSA showed a quadratic association with executive function that was strongest for high suppression. These results suggest that relatively high resting RSA may predict poor executive function ability when emotion regulation consumes executive control resources needed for ongoing cognitive performance. © 2015 Society for Psychophysiological Research.

  3. Neuropsychological consequences of alcohol and drug abuse on different components of executive functions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fernández-Serrano, María José; Pérez-García, Miguel; Schmidt Río-Valle, Jacqueline; Verdejo-García, Antonio

    2010-09-01

    Several studies have shown alterations in different components of executive functioning in users of different drugs, including cannabis, cocaine and heroin. However, it is difficult to establish a specific association between the use of each of these drugs and executive alterations, since most drug abusers are polysubstance abusers, and alcohol is a ubiquitous confounding factor. Moreover, in order to study the association between consumption of different drugs and executive functioning, the patterns of quantity and duration of drugs used must be considered, given the association between these parameters and the executive functioning alteration degree. Based on the multicomponent approach to executive functions, the aims of the present study were: (i) to analyse the differential contribution of alcohol versus cocaine, heroin and cannabis use on executive functions performance; and (ii) to analyse the contribution made by the severity of the different drugs used (quantity and duration patterns) on these functions in a sample of polysubstance abusers that requested treatment for cannabis-, cocaine- or heroin-related problems. We administered measures of fluency, working memory, analogical reasoning, interference, cognitive flexibility, decision-making and self-regulation to two groups: 60 substance-dependent individuals (SDIs) and 30 healthy control individuals (HCIs). SDIs had significantly poorer performance than HCIs across all of the executive domains assessed. Results from hierarchical regression models showed the existence of common correlates of the use of alcohol, cannabis and cocaine on verbal fluency and decision-making; common correlates of quantity of cannabis and cocaine use on verbal working memory and analogical reasoning; common correlates of duration of cocaine and heroin use on shifting; and specific effects of duration of cocaine use on inhibition measures. These findings indicate that alcohol abuse is negatively associated with fluency and

  4. The relationship between depression and executive function and the impact of vascular disease burden in younger and older adults

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lugtenburg, Astrid; Voshaar, Richard C. Oude; Van Zelst, Willeke; Schoevers, Robert A.; Enriquez-Geppert, Stefanie; Zuidersma, Marij

    2017-01-01

    Background: depression is associated with worse executive function, but underlying mechanisms might differ by age. Aims: to investigate whether vascular disease burden affects the association between depression and executive dysfunction differentially by age. Method: among 83,613 participants of

  5. Estimation of the cool executive function using frontal electroencephalogram signals in first-episode schizophrenia patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Yi; Zhao, Yun; Si, Yajing; Ren, Qiongqiong; Ren, Wu; Jing, Changqin; Zhang, Hongxing

    2016-11-25

    In schizophrenia, executive dysfunction is the most critical cognitive impairment, and is associated with abnormal neural activities, especially in the frontal lobes. Complexity estimation using electroencephalogram (EEG) recording based on nonlinear dynamics and task performance tests have been widely used to estimate executive dysfunction in schizophrenia. The present study estimated the cool executive function based on fractal dimension (FD) values of EEG data recorded from first-episode schizophrenia patients and healthy controls during the performance of three cool executive function tasks, namely, the Trail Making Test-A (TMT-A), Trail Making Test-B (TMT-B), and Tower of Hanoi tasks. The results show that the complexity of the frontal EEG signals that were measured using FD was different in first-episode schizophrenia patients during the manipulation of executive function. However, no differences between patients and controls were found in the FD values of the EEG data that was recorded during the performance of the Tower of Hanoi task. These results suggest that cool executive function exhibits little impairment in first-episode schizophrenia patients.

  6. Functioning in the Real World: Using Storytelling to Improve Validity in the Assessment of Executive Functions.

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    Annotti, Lee A; Teglasi, Hedwig

    2016-08-02

    Real-world contexts differ in the clarity of expectations for desired responses, as do assessment procedures, ranging along a continuum from maximal conditions that provide well-defined expectations to typical conditions that provide ill-defined expectations. Executive functions guide effective social interactions, but relations between them have not been studied with measures that are matched in the clarity of response expectations. In predicting teacher-rated social competence (SC) from kindergarteners' performance on tasks of executive functions (EFs), we found better model-data fit indexes when both measures were similar in the clarity of response expectations for the child. The maximal EF measure, the Developmental Neuropsychological Assessment, presents well-defined response expectations, and the typical EF measure, 5 scales from the Thematic Apperception Test (TAT), presents ill-defined response expectations (i.e., Abstraction, Perceptual Integration, Cognitive-Experiential Integration, and Associative Thinking). To assess SC under maximal and typical conditions, we used 2 teacher-rated questionnaires, with items, respectively, that emphasize well-defined and ill-defined expectations: the Behavior Rating Inventory: Behavioral Regulation Index and the Social Skills Improvement System: Social Competence Scale. Findings suggest that matching clarity of expectations improves generalization across measures and highlight the usefulness of the TAT to measure EF.

  7. Default mode, executive function, and language functional connectivity networks are compromised in mild Alzheimer's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weiler, Marina; Fukuda, Aya; Massabki, Lilian H P; Lopes, Tatila M; Franco, Alexandre R; Damasceno, Benito P; Cendes, Fernando; Balthazar, Marcio L F

    2014-03-01

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) is characterized by mental and cognitive problems, particularly with memory, language, visuospatial skills (VS), and executive functions (EF). Advances in the neuroimaging of AD have highlighted dysfunctions in functional connectivity networks (FCNs), especially in the memory related default mode network (DMN). However, little is known about the integrity and clinical significance of FNCs that process other cognitive functions than memory. We evaluated 22 patients with mild AD and 26 healthy controls through a resting state functional MRI scan. We aimed to identify different FCNs: the DMN, language, EF, and VS. Seed-based functional connectivity was calculated by placing a seed in the DMN (posterior cingulate cortex), language (Broca's and Wernicke's areas), EF (right and left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex), and VS networks (right and left associative visual cortex). We also performed regression analyses between individual connectivity maps for the different FCNs and the scores on cognitive tests. We found areas with significant decreases in functional connectivity in patients with mild AD in the DMN and Wernicke's area compared with controls. Increased connectivity in patients was observed in the EF network. Regarding multiple linear regression analyses, a significant correlation was only observed between the connectivity of the DMN and episodic memory (delayed recall) scores. In conclusion, functional connectivity alterations in mild AD are not restricted to the DMN. Other FCNs related to language and EF may be altered. However, we only found significant correlations between cognition and functional connectivity in the DMN and episodic memory performance.

  8. Rehabilitation of executive functioning in patients with frontal lobe brain damage with Goal Management Training

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brian eLevine

    2011-02-01

    Full Text Available Executive functioning deficits due to brain disease affecting frontal lobe functions cause significant real-life disability, yet solid evidence in support of executive functioning interventions is lacking. Goal Management Training (GMT, an executive functioning intervention that draws upon theories concerning goal processing and sustained attention, has received empirical support in studies of patients with traumatic brain injury, normal aging, and case studies. GMT promotes a mindful approach to complex real-life tasks that pose problems for patients with executive functioning deficits, with a main goal of periodically stopping ongoing behavior to monitor and adjust goals. In this controlled trial, an expanded version of GMT was compared to an alternative intervention, Brain Health Workshop (BHW that was matched to GMT on non-specific characteristics that can affect intervention outcome. Participants included 19 individuals in the chronic phase of recovery from brain disease (predominantly stroke affecting frontal lobe function. Outcome data indicated specific effects of GMT on the Sustained Attention to Response Task (SART as well as the Tower Test, a visuospatial problem solving measure that reflected far transfer of training effects. There were no significant effects on self-report questionnaires, likely owing to the complexity of these measures in this heterogeneous patient sample. Overall, these data support the efficacy of GMT in the rehabilitation of executive functioning deficits.

  9. Executive Functions and the improvement of thinking abilities: The intervention in reading comprehension.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Juan Antonio eGarcía Madruga

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available In this paper, we propose a preliminary theory of executive functions that address in a specific way their relationship with working memory (WM and higher-level cognition. It includes: a four core on-line WM executive functions that are involved in every novel and complex cognitive task; b two higher order off-line executive functions, planning and revision, that are required to resolving the most complex intellectual abilities; and c emotional control that is involved in any complex, novel and difficult task. The main assumption is that efficiency on thinking abilities may be improved by specific instruction or training on the executive functions necessary to solving novel and complex tasks involved in these abilities. Evidence for the impact of our training proposal on WM´s executive functions involved in higher-level cognitive abilities comes from three studies applying an adaptive program designed to improve reading comprehension in primary school students by boosting the core WM´s executive functions involved in it: focusing on relevant information, switching (or shifting between representations or tasks, connecting incoming information from text with long-term representations, updating of the semantic representation of the text in WM, and inhibition of irrelevant information. The results are consistent with the assumption that cognitive enhancements from the training intervention may have affected not only a specific but also a more domain-general mechanism involved in various executive functions. We discuss some methodological issues in the studies of effects of WM training on reading comprehension. The perspectives and limitations of our approach are finally discussed.

  10. Executive function on the 16-day of bed rest in young healthy men

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ishizaki, Yuko; Fukuoka, Hideoki; Tanaka, Hidetaka; Ishizaki, Tatsuro; Fujii, Yuri; Hattori-Uchida, Yuko; Nakamura, Minako; Ohkawa, Kaoru; Kobayashi, Hodaka; Taniuchi, Shoichiro; Kaneko, Kazunari

    2009-05-01

    Microgravity due to prolonged bed rest may cause changes in cerebral circulation, which is related to brain function. We evaluate the effect of simulated microgravity due to a 6° head-down tilt bed rest experiment on executive function among 12 healthy young men. Four kinds of psychoneurological tests—the table tapping test, the trail making test, the pointing test and losing at rock-paper-scissors—were performed on the baseline and on day 16 of the experiment. There was no significant difference in the results between the baseline and day 16 on all tests, which indicated that executive function was not impaired by the 16-day 6° head-down tilting bed rest. However, we cannot conclude that microgravity did not affect executive function because of the possible contribution of the following factors: (1) the timing of tests, (2) the learning effect, or (3) changes in psychophysiology that were too small to affect higher brain function.

  11. Executive Function Is Associated With Antisocial Behavior and Aggression in Athletes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Micai, Martina; Kavussanu, Maria; Ring, Christopher

    2015-10-01

    Poor executive function has been linked to increased antisocial and aggressive behavior in clinical and nonclinical populations. The present study investigated the relationship between executive and nonexecutive cognitive function and antisocial behavior in sport as well as reactive and proactive aggression. Cognitive function was assessed in young adult male and female athletes using the Cambridge Neuropsychological Test Automated Battery (CANTAB). Antisocial behavior in sport and aggression were assessed via self-report instruments and were found to be positively correlated. Executive function (but not nonexecutive function) scores were negatively correlated with both self-reported antisocial behavior and aggression in males but not females. Our findings suggest that prefrontal deficits among male athletes could contribute to poor impulse control and difficulty in anticipating the consequences of their antisocial and aggressive behavior.

  12. Investigating executive functions in children with severe speech and movement disorders using structured tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stadskleiv, Kristine; von Tetzchner, Stephen; Batorowicz, Beata; van Balkom, Hans; Dahlgren-Sandberg, Annika; Renner, Gregor

    2014-01-01

    Executive functions are the basis for goal-directed activity and include planning, monitoring, and inhibition, and language seems to play a role in the development of these functions. There is a tradition of studying executive function in both typical and atypical populations, and the present study investigates executive functions in children with severe speech and motor impairments who are communicating using communication aids with graphic symbols, letters, and/or words. There are few neuropsychological studies of children in this group and little is known about their cognitive functioning, including executive functions. It was hypothesized that aided communication would tax executive functions more than speech. Twenty-nine children using communication aids and 27 naturally speaking children participated. Structured tasks resembling everyday activities, where the action goals had to be reached through communication with a partner, were used to get information about executive functions. The children (a) directed the partner to perform actions like building a Lego tower from a model the partner could not see and (b) gave information about an object without naming it to a person who had to guess what object it was. The executive functions of planning, monitoring, and impulse control were coded from the children's on-task behavior. Both groups solved most of the tasks correctly, indicating that aided communicators are able to use language to direct another person to do a complex set of actions. Planning and lack of impulsivity was positively related to task success in both groups. The aided group completed significantly fewer tasks, spent longer time and showed more variation in performance than the comparison group. The aided communicators scored lower on planning and showed more impulsivity than the comparison group, while both groups showed an equal degree of monitoring of the work progress. The results are consistent with the hypothesis that aided language tax

  13. Executive functioning in daily life in Parkinson's disease: initiative, planning and multi-task performance.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Janneke Koerts

    Full Text Available Impairments in executive functioning are frequently observed in Parkinson's disease (PD. However, executive functioning needed in daily life is difficult to measure. Considering this difficulty the Cognitive Effort Test (CET was recently developed. In this multi-task test the goals are specified but participants are free in their approach. This study applies the CET in PD patients and investigates whether initiative, planning and multi-tasking are associated with aspects of executive functions and psychomotor speed. Thirty-six PD patients with a mild to moderate disease severity and thirty-four healthy participants were included in this study. PD patients planned and demonstrated more sequential task execution, which was associated with a decreased psychomotor speed. Furthermore, patients with a moderate PD planned to execute fewer tasks at the same time than patients with a mild PD. No differences were found between these groups for multi-tasking. In conclusion, PD patients planned and executed the tasks of the CET sequentially rather than in parallel presumably reflecting a compensation strategy for a decreased psychomotor speed. Furthermore, patients with moderate PD appeared to take their impairments into consideration when planning how to engage the tasks of the test. This compensation could not be detected in patients with mild PD.

  14. Executive Function and Postural Instability in People with Parkinson’s Disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dong Xu

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available The specific aspects of cognition contributing to balance and gait have not been clarified in people with Parkinson’s disease (PD. Twenty PD participants and twenty age- and gender-matched healthy controls were assessed on cognition and clinical mobility tests. General cognition was assessed with the Mini Mental State Exam and Addenbrooke’s Cognitive Exam. Executive function was evaluated using the Trail Making Tests (TMT-A and TMT-B and a computerized cognitive battery which included a series of choice reaction time (CRT tests. Clinical gait and balance measures included the Tinetti, Timed Up & Go, Berg Balance, and Functional Reach tests. PD participants performed significantly worse than the controls on the tests of cognitive and executive function, balance, and gait. PD participants took longer on Trail Making Tests, CRT-Location, and CRT-Colour (inhibition response. Furthermore, executive function, particularly longer times on CRT-Distracter and greater errors on the TMT-B, was associated with worse balance and gait performance in the PD group. Measures of general cognition were not associated with balance and gait measures in either group. For PD participants, attention and executive function were impaired. Components of executive function, particularly those involving inhibition response and distracters, were associated with poorer balance and gait performance in PD.

  15. Longitudinal and concurrent links between memory span, anxiety symptoms, and subsequent executive functioning in young children

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Laura eVisu-Petra

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available It has been conjectured that basic individual differences in attentional control influence higher-level executive functioning and subsequent academic performance in children. The current study sets out to complement the limited body of research on early precursors of executive functions. It provides both a cross-sectional, as well as a longitudinal exploration of the relationship between executive functions and more basic attentional control mechanisms, assessed via children’s performance on memory storage tasks, and influenced by individual differences in anxiety. Multiple measures of verbal and visuospatial short-term memory (STM were administered to children between 3 and 6 years old, alongside a nonverbal measure of intelligence, and a parental report of anxiety symptoms. After 9 months, children were re-tested on the same STM measures, at which time we also administered multiple measures of executive functioning: verbal and visuospatial working memory (WM, inhibition, and shifting. A cross-sectional view of STM development indicated that between 3 and 6 years the trajectory of visuospatial STM and executive functions underwent a gradual linear improvement. However, between 5 and 6 years progress in verbal STM performance stagnated. Hierarchical regression models revealed that trait anxiety was negatively associated with WM and shifting, while nonverbal intelligence was positively related to WM span. When age, gender, nonverbal intelligence, and anxiety were controlled for, STM (measured at the first assessment was a very good predictor of overall executive performance. The models were most successful in predicting WM, followed by shifting, yet poorly predicted inhibition measures. Further longitudinal research is needed to directly address the contribution of attentional control mechanisms to emerging executive functioning and to the development of problematic behavior during early development.

  16. Episodic and semantic memory functioning in very old age: Explanations from executive functioning and processing speed theories

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pauline E.J. Spaan

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Structural equation modeling was used to investigate whether age-related episodic and semantic memory impairments are better explained by decline in processing speed or executive functioning (or both, rather than directly in terms of memory components. The models tested were based on an extensive review of the literature on cognitive decline in normal aging, up to very old age. A computerized test battery, measuring episodic memory (free and cued recall; recognition, semantic memory (fluency; naming accuracy and latencies, processing speed and executive functioning, was administered to 234 elderly persons ranging from young-old to very old age (55–96 years. To avoid large variance in response times due to physical instead of cognitive limitations, no motor responses were required from participants. Age-related decline in episodic and semantic memory performance was found to be the consequence of declines in processing speed and executive functioning. Processing speed mainly mediated decline of semantic memory, whereas executive functioning mainly mediated episodic memory decline. The most parsimonious model showed that both processing speed and executive functioning attributed to memory decline but independent from one another. The results suggest that at very old age, the impact of executive dysfunctions on episodic memory performance exceeds the influence of cognitive slowing.

  17. Sensory processing in preterm preschoolers and its association with executive function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adams, Jenna N; Feldman, Heidi M; Huffman, Lynne C; Loe, Irene M

    2015-03-01

    Symptoms of abnormal sensory processing have been related to preterm birth, but have not yet been studied specifically in preterm preschoolers. The degree of association between sensory processing and other domains is important for understanding the role of sensory processing symptoms in the development of preterm children. To test two related hypotheses: (1) preterm preschoolers have more sensory processing symptoms than full term preschoolers and (2) sensory processing is associated with both executive function and adaptive function in preterm preschoolers. Cross-sectional study. Preterm children (≤34weeks of gestation; n=54) and full term controls (≥37weeks of gestation; n=73) ages 3-5years. Sensory processing was assessed with the Short Sensory Profile. Executive function was assessed with (1) parent ratings on the Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function - Preschool version and (2) a performance-based battery of tasks. Adaptive function was assessed with the Vineland Adaptive Behavior Scales-II. Preterm preschoolers showed significantly more sensory symptoms than full term controls. A higher percentage of preterm than full term preschoolers had elevated numbers of sensory symptoms (37% vs. 12%). Sensory symptoms in preterm preschoolers were associated with scores on executive function measures, but were not significantly associated with adaptive function. Preterm preschoolers exhibited more sensory symptoms than full term controls. Preterm preschoolers with elevated numbers of sensory symptoms also showed executive function impairment. Future research should further examine whether sensory processing and executive function should be considered independent or overlapping constructs. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  18. Physical activity in the elderly is associated with improved executive function and processing speed

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Frederiksen, Kristian Steen; Verdelho, Ana; Madureira, Sofia;

    2015-01-01

    OBJECTIVES: Physical activity reduces the risk of cognitive decline but may affect cognitive domains differently. We examined whether physical activity modifies processing speed, executive function and memory in a population of non-dementia elderly subjects with age-related white matter changes...... or dementia, were included. Multiple variable linear regression analysis with baseline MMSE, education, gender, age, stroke, diabetes and ARWMC rating as covariates revealed that physical activity was associated with better scores at baseline and 3-year follow-up for executive function (baseline: β: 0.39, 95......-up scores, executive function remained significant (β: 0.11, 95% CI: 0-0.22, p = 0.04). CONCLUSION: Our findings confirm previous findings of a positive effect of physical activity on cognitive functions in elderly subjects, and further extends these by showing that the association is also present...

  19. Physical Performance Is Associated with Executive Functioning in Older African American Women

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brooke C. Schneider

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available An older adult's ability to perform physical tasks is predictive of disability onset and is associated with declines in cognition. Risk factors for physical performance declines among African Americans, a group with the highest rates of disability, remain understudied. This study sought to identify demographic, health, and cognitive factors associated with lower-extremity physical performance in a sample of 106 African American women ages 56 to 91. After controlling for global cognitive functioning (Mini Mental State Exam, physical performance was associated with executive functioning (Stroop Color/Word, but not visuospatial construction (WASI Block Design or processing speed (Trail Making Test, Part A. Executive functioning remained associated with physical performance after entry of demographic variables, exercise, depression, disease burden, and body mass index (BMI. Age, and BMI were also significant in this model. Executive functioning, age and BMI are associated with lower-extremity physical performance among older African American women.

  20. Media violence exposure and executive functioning in aggressive and control adolescents.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kronenberger, William G; Mathews, Vincent P; Dunn, David W; Wang, Yang; Wood, Elisabeth A; Giauque, Ann L; Larsen, Joelle J; Rembusch, Mary E; Lowe, Mark J; Li, Tie-Qiang

    2005-06-01

    The relationship between media violence exposure and executive functioning was investigated in samples of adolescents with no psychiatric diagnosis or with a history of aggressive-disruptive behavior. Age-, gender-, and IQ-matched samples of adolescents who had no Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders-fourth edition (DSM-IV; American Psychiatric Association, 1994) diagnosis (N = 27) and of adolescents who had DSM-IV Disruptive Behavior Disorder diagnoses (N = 27) completed measures of media violence exposure and tests of executive functioning. Moderate to strong relationships were found between higher amounts of media violence exposure and deficits in self-report, parent-report, and laboratory-based measures of executive functioning. A significant diagnosis by media violence exposure interaction effect was found for Conners' Continuous Performance Test scores, such that the media violence exposure-executive functioning relationship was stronger for adolescents who had Disruptive Behavior Disorder diagnoses. Results indicate that media violence exposure is related to poorer executive functioning, and this relationship may be stronger for adolescents who have a history of aggressive-disruptive behavior. Copyright 2004 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  1. Children's Elementary School Social Experience and Executive Functions Development: Introduction to a Special Section.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Lier, Pol A C; Deater-Deckard, Kirby

    2016-01-01

    Children's executive functions, encompassing inhibitory control, working memory and attention are vital for their self-regulation. With the transition to formal schooling, children need to learn to manage their emotions and behavior in a new and complex social environment that with age increases in the intensity of social interactions with peers and teachers. Stronger executive functions skills facilitate children's social development. In addition, new experiences in the social environments of school also may influence executive function development. The focus of this special section is on this potential impact of elementary school social experiences with peers and teacher on the development of children's executive functions. The collection of papers encompass various aspects of peer and teacher social environments, and cover broad as well as specific facets and measures of executive functions including neural responses. The collection of papers sample developmental periods that span preschool through mid-adolescence. In this introduction, we summarize and highlight the main findings of each of the papers, organized around social interactions with peers and interactions with teachers. We conclude our synopsis with implications for future research, and a specific focus on prevention and intervention.

  2. Multicenter validation of a bedside antisaccade task as a measure of executive function

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hellmuth, J.; Mirsky, J.; Heuer, H.W.; Matlin, A.; Jafari, A.; Garbutt, S.; Widmeyer, M.; Berhel, A.; Sinha, L.; Miller, B.L.; Kramer, J.H.

    2012-01-01

    Objective: To create and validate a simple, standardized version of the antisaccade (AS) task that requires no specialized equipment for use as a measure of executive function in multicenter clinical studies. Methods: The bedside AS (BAS) task consisted of 40 pseudorandomized AS trials presented on a laptop computer. BAS performance was compared with AS performance measured using an infrared eye tracker in normal elders (NE) and individuals with mild cognitive impairment (MCI) or dementia (n = 33). The neuropsychological domain specificity of the BAS was then determined in a cohort of NE, MCI, and dementia (n = 103) at UCSF, and the BAS was validated as a measure of executive function in a 6-center cohort (n = 397) of normal adults and patients with a variety of brain diseases. Results: Performance on the BAS and laboratory AS task was strongly correlated and BAS performance was most strongly associated with neuropsychological measures of executive function. Even after controlling for disease severity and processing speed, BAS performance was associated with multiple assessments of executive function, most strongly the informant-based Frontal Systems Behavior Scale. Conclusions: The BAS is a simple, valid measure of executive function in aging and neurologic disease. PMID:22573640

  3. Studying self-awareness in children: validation of the Questionnaire of Executive Functioning (QEF).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Geurten, Marie; Catale, Corinne; Geurten, Claire; Wansard, Murielle; Meulemans, Thierry

    2016-05-01

    People with accurate representations of their own cognitive functioning (i.e. cognitive self-awareness) tend to use appropriate strategies to regulate their behavior. Due to the lack of appropriate instruments, few studies have examined the development of this ability among children. This study tested the measurement properties of the self-rating and other-rating forms of the Questionnaire of Executive Functioning (QEF), designed to tap children's knowledge of their executive functioning. Specifically, the construct, convergent, and discriminant validities were investigated and a self-other discrepancy score was computed to assess children's executive self-awareness. Participants were 317 children aged 7-14 years old. Confirmatory factor analyses carried out on the QEF confirmed the eight-factor structure of both versions. There were significant correlations between the QEF and the parent versions of the Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function, the Dysexecutive Questionnaire for Children, and the Childhood Executive Functioning Inventory. Both forms of the QEF were able to distinguish between children who had sustained a traumatic brain injury (TBI) and control participants. A statistical difference was observed between the TBI and control groups on this score, suggesting that TBI may trigger self-awareness impairments in children. The good psychometric properties of the two forms of the QEF were established. Furthermore, results of the analyses carried out on the different discrepancy scores seem to indicate that the QEF could help clinicians to detect patients with self-awareness deficits.

  4. Child Behavior Problems, Teacher Executive Functions, and Teacher Stress in Head Start Classrooms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Friedman-Krauss, Allison H; Raver, C Cybele; Neuspiel, Juliana M; Kinsel, John

    2014-01-01

    The current article explores the relationship between teachers' perceptions of child behavior problems and preschool teacher job stress, as well as the possibility that teachers' executive functions moderate this relationship. Data came from 69 preschool teachers in 31 early childhood classrooms in 4 Head Start centers and were collected using Web-based surveys and Web-based direct assessment tasks. Multilevel models revealed that higher levels of teachers' perceptions of child behavior problems were associated with higher levels of teacher job stress and that higher teacher executive function skills were related to lower job stress. However, findings did not yield evidence for teacher executive functions as a statistical moderator. Many early childhood teachers do not receive sufficient training for handling children's challenging behaviors. Child behavior problems increase a teacher's workload and consequently may contribute to feelings of stress. However, teachers' executive function abilities may enable them to use effective, cognitive-based behavior management and instructional strategies during interactions with students, which may reduce stress. Providing teachers with training on managing challenging behaviors and enhancing executive functions may reduce their stress and facilitate their use of effective classroom practices, which is important for children's school readiness skills and teachers' health.

  5. Elevated triglycerides are associated with decreased executive function among adolescents with bipolar disorder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Naiberg, M R; Newton, D F; Collins, J E; Dickstein, D P; Bowie, C R; Goldstein, B I

    2016-09-01

    Cardiovascular risk factors that comprise metabolic syndrome (MetS) have been linked with cognition in adults with bipolar disorder (BD). This study examines the association between MetS components and executive function in adolescents with BD. A total of 34 adolescents with BD and 35 healthy control (HC) adolescents were enrolled. MetS components included triglycerides, high-density lipoprotein, glucose, waist circumference, and systolic and diastolic blood pressure. Executive functioning was measured using the intra-extra-dimensional (IED) set-shifting task from the Cambridge Neuropsychological Tests Automated Battery. Adolescents with BD were more likely to have ≥1 MetS components (64.7%) as compared to HC participants (22.9%, χ(2) = 12.29, P = triglyceride levels (ρ = -0.358, P = 0.041 and ρ = -0.396, P = 0.020 respectively). The association of triglycerides with executive function remained significant after controlling for age, IQ, and current use of second-generation antipsychotics. Elevated triglycerides are associated with poorer executive function among adolescents with BD. Studies of behavioural and pharmacological interventions targeting MetS components for the purpose of improving executive function among adolescents with BD are warranted. © 2016 John Wiley & Sons A/S. Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  6. Effects of the Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy for Stress Management on Executive Function Components.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santos-Ruiz, Ana; Robles-Ortega, Humbelina; Pérez-García, Miguel; Peralta-Ramírez, María Isabel

    2017-02-13

    This study aims to determine whether it is possible to modify executive function in stressed individuals by means of cognitive-behavioral therapy for stress management. Thirty-one people with high levels of perceived stress were recruited into the study (treatment group = 18; wait-list group = 13). The treatment group received 14 weeks of stress management program. Psychological and executive function variables were evaluated in both groups pre and post-intervention. The treatment group showed improved psychological variables of perceived stress (t = 5.492; p = .001), vulnerability to stress (t = 4.061; p = .001) and superstitious thinking (t = 2.961; p = .009). Likewise, the results showed statistically significant differences in personality variables related to executive function, positive urgency (t = 3.585; p = .002) and sensitivity to reward (t = -2.201; p = .042), which improved after the therapy. These variables showed a moderate to high effect size (oscillates between 1.30 for perceived stress and .566 for sensitivity to reward). The cognitive-behavioral therapy for stress management may be an appropriate strategy for improving personality construct components related to executive function, however effects of the therapy are not showed on performance on the tests of executive function applied, as presented studies previous.

  7. Selected executive functions in children with ADHD in early school age

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aneta Rita Borkowska

    2010-09-01

    Full Text Available The study was aimed at finding out whether at the early school age the effectiveness of executive functions distinguishes children with ADHD from those of the control group. Besides, the aim was to check to what extent the use of diagnostic methods evaluating executive functions in children at the early school age is justified. The analysis comprised cognitive flexibility, sustained attention, interference control and planning ability. Those methods of neuropsychological evaluation were used which are mostly applied to characterize executive functions: Wisconsin Card Sorting Test, interference task based on the Stroop Interference Test, and tests of verbal fluency and Tower of London. The examined group consisted of 50 children aged 7-10: 25 children with hyperactivity of combined type and 25 children of the control group. Each group consisted of 23 boys and 2 girls. The average age in the criterial group was 8 years and 10 months (SD=10 months, whereas in the control group – 8 years and 6 months (SD=11 months. According to the obtained results, children with ADHD at early school age do not exhibit a wide spectrum of executive functions deficits, which is probably associated with immaturity of executive processes in all children of that age. The findings comprised only difficulties in inhibition of response, monitoring of activity, and ability of executive attention to intentional guidance of the mental effort depending on the task’s requirements. In investigations of children with ADHD at early school age the use of neuropsychological tests and trials designed for evaluation of executive functions is justified only in limited degree. They do not significantly distinguish between children with ADHD and children without this disorder, therefore the results may be mainly of descriptive, and not explanatory, value.

  8. Catechol-O-methyltransferase Val158Met polymorphism influences prefrontal executive function in early Parkinson's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Youwen; Feng, Shujun; Nie, Kun; Zhao, Xin; Gan, Rong; Wang, Limin; Zhao, Jiehao; Tang, Hongmei; Gao, Liang; Zhu, Ruiming; Wang, Lijuan; Zhang, Yuhu

    2016-10-15

    The catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) Val158Met polymorphism has been proposed to be associated with increased risk of Parkinson's disease (PD) and have a specific impact on dopamine-mediated prefrontal executive function in an inverted-U curve manner. We explored the influence of this genetic polymorphism on prefrontal executive function in a well-established Chinese cohort of early PD patients with no current or past history of motor fluctuations or dyskinesias. Cognitive functions were assessed in 250 patients with early PD using Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale-Chinese Revision (WAIS-RC) and Wechsler Memory Scale-Chinese Revision (WMS-RC). These patients and 300 healthy controls were subsequently genotyped for the COMT gene Val158Met polymorphism. We employed analysis of covariance (ANCOVA) and a stratified analysis to determine the associations between the COMT Val158Met genotype and cognitive functions. The COMT Val158Met allele frequency and genotype distributions showed no statistically significant differences between PD patients and controls. However, patients with met/met genotype performed significantly worse on WAIS-RC similarities, a measure of executive function, compared to individuals with val/val genotype. Subsequent ANCOVA analysis revealed that COMT genotype interacted with sex and daily levodopa equivalent dose (LED) to influence executive function. Further stratified analysis showed that the lower-activity COMT met/met genotype has a detrimental effect on executive function among women. Our results demonstrate that COMT Val158Met polymorphism is probably not associated with increased risk of PD, but has an effect on prefrontal executive function interacting with gender and dopaminergic medication. Copyright © 2016. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  9. The role of executive functioning in quality of life in pediatric intractable epilepsy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Love, Christina Eguizabal; Webbe, Frank; Kim, Gunha; Lee, Ki Hyeong; Westerveld, Michael; Salinas, Christine M

    2016-11-01

    Children with epilepsy are vulnerable to executive dysfunction, but the relationship between executive functioning (EF) and quality of life (QOL) in children with epilepsy is not fully delineated. This exploratory study elucidated the relationship between ecological EF and QOL in pediatric intractable epilepsy. Fifty-four consecutively referred pediatric epilepsy surgery candidates and their parents were administered IQ measures, the Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function (BRIEF), and the Quality of Life in Childhood Epilepsy (QOLCE) as part of a comprehensive neuropsychological evaluation. A significant difference was found in QOL between those with and without clinical impairments on the BRIEF [t(52)=3.93; p<.001]. That is, children with executive dysfunction had lower overall QOL. All seizure variables and BRIEF scales were associated with overall QOL [F(12, 40)=6.508; p=.001; R(2)=.661]. Working memory from the BRIEF was the most frequently elevated scale in our sample (57%). Those with executive dysfunction had 9.7 times the risk of having poor QOL. Poor EF control according to behavior ratings is significantly related to QOL in intractable pediatric epilepsy. Identification of executive dysfunction in home environments is an essential component of presurgical evaluations and target for intervention, which may improve QOL. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. Impaired executive function following ischemic stroke in the rat medial prefrontal cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cordova, Chris A; Jackson, Danielle; Langdon, Kristopher D; Hewlett, Krista A; Corbett, Dale

    2014-01-01

    Small (lacunar) infarcts frequently arise in frontal and midline thalamic regions in the absence of major stroke. Damage to these areas often leads to impairment of executive function likely as a result of interrupting connections of the prefrontal cortex. Thus, patients experience frontal-like symptoms such as impaired ability to shift ongoing behavior and attention. In contrast, executive dysfunction has not been demonstrated in rodent models of stroke, thereby limiting the development of potential therapies for human executive dysfunction. Male Sprague-Dawley rats (n=40) underwent either sham surgery or bilateral endothelin-1 injections in the mediodorsal nucleus of the thalamus or in the medial prefrontal cortex. Executive function was assessed using a rodent attention set shifting test that requires animals to shift attention to stimuli in different stimulus dimensions. Medial prefrontal cortex ischemia impaired attention shift performance between different stimulus dimensions while sparing stimulus discrimination and attention shifts within a stimulus dimension, indicating a selective attention set-shift deficit. Rats with mediodorsal thalamic lacunar damage did not exhibit a cognitive impairment relative to sham controls. The selective attention set shift impairment observed in this study is consistent with clinical data demonstrating selective executive disorders following stroke within specific sub-regions of frontal cortex. These data contribute to the development and validation of a preclinical animal model of executive dysfunction, that can be employed to identify potential therapies for ameliorating cognitive deficits following stroke.

  11. Self-Reported Executive Functioning in Everyday Life in Parkinson's Disease after Three Months of Subthalamic Deep Brain Stimulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pham, Uyen Ha Gia; Andersson, Stein; Toft, Mathias; Pripp, Are Hugo; Konglund, Ane Eidahl; Dietrichs, Espen; Malt, Ulrik Fredrik; Skogseid, Inger Marie; Haraldsen, Ira Ronit Hebolt; Solbakk, Anne-Kristin

    2015-01-01

    Objective. Studies on the effect of subthalamic deep brain stimulation (STN-DBS) on executive functioning in Parkinson's disease (PD) are still controversial. In this study we compared self-reported daily executive functioning in PD patients before and after three months of STN-DBS. We also examined whether executive functioning in everyday life was associated with motor symptoms, apathy, and psychiatric symptoms. Method. 40 PD patients were examined with the Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function-Adult Version (BRIEF-A), the Symptom Checklist 90-Revised (SCL-90-R), and the Apathy Evaluation Scale (AES-S). Results. PD patients reported significant improvement in daily life executive functioning after 3 months of STN-DBS. Anxiety scores significantly declined, while other psychiatric symptoms remained unchanged. The improvement of self-reported executive functioning did not correlate with motor improvement after STN-DBS. Apathy scores remained unchanged after surgery. Only preoperative depressed mood had predictive value to the improvement of executive function and appears to prevent potentially favorable outcomes from STN-DBS on some aspects of executive function. Conclusion. PD patients being screened for STN-DBS surgery should be evaluated with regard to self-reported executive functioning. Depressive symptoms in presurgical PD patients should be treated. Complementary information about daily life executive functioning in PD patients might enhance further treatment planning of STN-DBS.

  12. Linkages between childhood executive functioning and adolescent social functioning and psychopathology in girls with ADHD.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rinsky, Jenna R; Hinshaw, Stephen P

    2011-01-01

    We followed an ethnically and socioeconomically diverse sample of preadolescent girls with ADHD (n = 140) and matched comparison girls (n = 88) over a period of 5 years, from middle childhood through early/midadolescence, with the aim of determining whether childhood levels of executive function (EF) would predict adolescent multi-informant outcomes of social functioning and psychopathology, including comorbidity between externalizing and internalizing symptomatology. Predictors were well-established measures of planning, response inhibition, and working memory, along with a control measure of fine motor control. Independent of ADHD versus comparison group status, (a) childhood planning and response inhibition predicted adolescent social functioning and (b) childhood planning predicted comorbid internalizing/externalizing disorders in adolescence. Subgroup status (ADHD-Combined, ADHD-Inattentive, and comparison) moderated the relationship between childhood planning and adolescent internalizing/externalizing comorbidity, with the combined type revealing particularly strong associations between baseline planning and adolescent comorbidity. Mediation analyses indicated that adolescent social functioning mediated the prediction from childhood EF to comorbidity at follow-up; in turn, in the girls with ADHD, adolescent comorbidity mediated the prediction from childhood EF to social functioning at follow-up. We conclude that childhood interventions should target EF impairments in addition to behavioral symptoms.

  13. Exploring the Incorporation of Executive Functions in Intelligence Testing: Factor Analysis of the WAIS-III and Traditional Tasks of Executive Functioning

    OpenAIRE

    Aken, L. van; R.P.C. Kessels; Wingbermühle, P.A.M.; Wiltink, M.; Heijden, P.T. van der; Egger, J.I.M.

    2014-01-01

    The aim of this study was to examine the relationship between subtests of the Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale – third edition (WAIS-III) and executive functions. The Behavioural Assessment of the Dysexecutive Syndrome, Wisconsin Card Sorting Test, and Stroop Color-Word Test were administered to a heterogeneous group of 234 psychiatric patients and 24 healthy volunteers. Maximum likelihood procedures with promax rotation were applied to two, three and four factor solutions. The four factor m...

  14. Familial clustering of executive functioning in affected sibling pair families with ADHD.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Slaats-Willemse, D.I.; Swaab-Barneveld, H.J.; Sonneville, L.

    2005-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: To investigate familial clustering of executive functioning (i.e., response inhibition, fine visuomotor functioning, and attentional control) in attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)-affected sibling pairs. METHOD: Fifty-two affected sibling pairs aged 6 to 18 years and diagnose

  15. Executive Functioning in Individuals with Intellectual Disabilities and Autism Spectrum Disorders

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roelofs, R. L.; Visser, E. M.; Berger, H. J. C.; Prins, J. B.; Van Schrojenstein Lantman-De Valk, H. M. J.; Teunisse, J. P.

    2015-01-01

    Background: Executive functioning (EF) is important for adequate behavioural functioning and crucial for explaining symptoms of autism spectrum disorders (ASD) in individuals with normal intelligence, but is scarcely studied in individuals with ASD and intellectual disabilities (ID). We therefore study EF in an ID population by comparing…

  16. Parenting, Family Socioeconomic Status, and Child Executive Functioning: A Longitudinal Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rochette, Émilie; Bernier, Annie

    2014-01-01

    Family socioeconomic status (SES) and the quality of maternal behavior are among the few identified predictors of child executive functioning (EF), and they have often been found to have interactive rather than additive effects on other domains of child functioning. The purpose of this study was to explore their interactive effects in the…

  17. Validating Neuropsychological Subtypes of ADHD: How Do Children "with" and "without" an Executive Function Deficit Differ?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lambek, Rikke; Tannock, Rosemary; Dalsgaard, Soeren; Trillingsgaard, Anegen; Damm, Dorte; Thomsen, Per Hove

    2010-01-01

    Objective: The study investigates behavioural, academic, cognitive, and motivational aspects of functioning in school-age children with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) with and without an executive function deficit (EFD). Method: Children with ADHD - EFD (n = 22) and children with ADHD + EFD (n = 26) were compared on aspects of…

  18. Executive Functioning among Finnish Adolescents with Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder

    Science.gov (United States)

    Loo, Sandra K.; Humphrey, Lorie A.; Tapio, Terttu; Moilanen, Irma K.; McGough, James J.; McCracken, James T.; Yang, May H.; Dang, Jeff; Taanila, Anja; Ebeling, Hanna; Jarvelin, Marjo-Riitta; Smalley, Susan L.

    2007-01-01

    A study aims to examine cognitive functioning in a sample of adolescents with and without attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder(ADHD) from the North Finnish Birth Cohort 1986. The results conclude that executive function deficit (EFD) was more frequent in ADHD groups than in those without ADHD.

  19. Deficient maturation of aspects of attention and executive functions in early onset schizophrenia

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jepsen, Jens Richardt M; Fagerlund, Birgitte; Pagsberg, Anne Katrine

    2010-01-01

    -organic, non-affective psychoses (EOP) (N = 11). Speed of processing of executive functions, set shifting, and attention improved significantly in the healthy controls and reflected continuous functional maturation during late adolescence and early adulthood. The developmental progression of attention and set...

  20. Benefits of Physical Exercise on Executive Functions in Older People with Parkinson's Disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tanaka, Katia; de Quadros, Antonio Carlos, Jr.; Santos, Ruth Ferreira; Stella, Florindo; Gobbi, Lilian Teresa Bucken; Gobbi, Sebastiao

    2009-01-01

    The benefits of physical exercise on cognitive functioning have been reported in the literature, but the potential benefits to slow the eventual decline in executive functioning (EF) caused by neurodegeneration from Parkinson's Disease (PD) have rarely been studied. Thus the objective of this study was to analyze the effects of a multimodal…