Automated Assessment of Child Attention Deficit Disorder

Period of Performance: 09/30/2001 - 09/30/2002


Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Lodge Associates
Mayslick, KY 41055
Principal Investigator


DESCRIPTION (provided by applicant): The aims of this Phase I SBIR application are (1) to provide additional validation data on the Structured Observation of Academic and Play Settings (SOAPS), a research paradigm for assessing the symptom behaviors of Attention Deficit Disorder; and (2) to estimate the validity and feasibility of a new automated, evidence-based version, the Detailed Record of Executive Functions (DREFT). The DREFT is a convenient 15-minute analogue procedure that provides an objective assessment of inattentive, hyperactive, and impulsive behaviors. During Phase I, we will update the 1985 SOAPS manual (Roberts, Nilich, & Loney) with findings from our computer archives on 960 clinic-referred and normal boys and girls between 6 and 15 years of age. We will also analyze data on 95 children who have been administered the DREFT, providing validation findings for the new automated procedure and comparing it to the SOAPS in validity, reliability, and practicality. These findings will be assembled in a preliminary manual for potential users of the DREFT. If warranted, during Phase II, we would administer the DREFT to additional clinic-referred children, especially to increase numbers of preschool, female, and minority children; assemble representative standardization data on normal children; and produce a final manual for the DREFT procedure. PROPOSED COMMERCIAL APPLICATION: The Detailed Record of Executive Functions (DREFT) is a brief, automated, evidence based behavior observation procedure that could be used routinely by pediatricians, family practitioners, psychiatrists, and psychologists as a cost effective and objective supplement in the diagnosis and treatment monitoring of Attention-Deficit/ Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and related child and adolescent behavior problems.