Educational and Occupational Underattainment in Adults With Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder: A Controlled Study
J Clin Psychiatry 2008;69(8):1217-1222
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disorder (ADHD) has been consistently associated with intellectual, educational, and
employment deficits. This study evaluated subjects to
determine whether the educational and occupational deficits associated with ADHD are what would
be expected given their intellectual abilities or
lower than expected given their intellectual abilities.
Method: Participants derived from a
case-control study of adults with (N = 224) and
without (N = 146) DSM-IV ADHD. Subjects were comprehensively assessed with structured
diagnostic interviews and neuropsychological
assessments. Educational and occupational
attainments were based on Hollingshead socioeconomic
status scale. The expected educational and
occupational levels of participants with ADHD were
computed using ordered logistic regression models as
a function of age, sex, and full scale IQ of
controls. The study was conducted from 1998 to 2003.
Results: Based on their IQ, subjects
with ADHD were predicted to have significantly
more education than they actually attained.
Additionally, based on their observed education,
participants with ADHD were predicted to have
significantly higher occupational levels than
Conclusion: These findings indicate
that ADHD is associated with significant
educational and occupational underattainments relative
to what would have been expected on the basis of intellectual potential.