Date of Award

2007

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PHD)

Degree Program

Global Leadership - with a specialization in Educational Leadership

Department

College of Education

First Advisor

William J. Leary

Second Advisor

Cheryl J. Serrano

Third Advisor

Nathalie Lynch-Walsh

Abstract

ADHD is the most widespread childhood disorder in the United States today, affecting approximately 2 million children. Attention disorders, occurring in 5% to 10% of children are usually referred because of hyperactivity. Yet, only half of children with attention disorders are hyperactive. Research indicated between the years 1993 and 2003; the number of ADHD-related doctor visits grew from 3.2 million to 7.4 million. This increase led to a rise in stimulant medications prescribed by physicians. Despite evidence of some improvement in symptoms of ADHD following medication treatment, many are still concerned about the possible side effects that may arise due to the lasting effect of pharmacological treatment. This study was designed to address these concerns by testing a non-pharmacological, education-based intervention to assist children in building attention skills.

A self-selected, data producing sample of 60 elementary school students identified with attention difficulties on the BASC participated in this quantitative, causal-comparative, and experimental study. Descriptive statistics analyzed sample characteristics, while multiple regression and t-tests were used to examine relationships and differences, respectively, related to the effect of World Music Drumming on attention skills, as measured by errors of omission and commission, and response time on the TOVA, Auditory and Visual.

Results indicated that students who participated in World Music Drumming had a significant decrease in TOVA auditory and visual skills test percentage of commission error scores, but no significant decrease in TOVA auditory and visual skills test percentage of omission error scores. Although auditory skills response time scores decreased for both the experimental and control groups when comparing pre-test and post-test scores, the decrease was not significant using parametric tests. Results of nonparametric tests found marginally significant decreases in auditory skills test response time scores among the experimental group. Therefore, participation in World Music Drumming did not have a significant effect on visual skills response time scores of students who participated, but it did have a marginally significant effect on their auditory skills response time scores. Recommendations for future study include the use of a larger accessible population; address additional attribute variables; and use scaled rather than ordinal BASC scores.

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