Measures and References: Attention

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Numerous measures exist to gain a full picture of a student's learning strengths and challenges. Following are examples of measures used to assess this Learner Factor. These measures should be administered and interpreted by experienced professionals.

Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function (BRIEF) (Gioia et al, 2000): Parent and teacher questionnaire to assess executive function, including Attention, in students aged five to 18


Awh, E., Vogel, E. K., & Oh, S. H. (2006). Interactions between attention and working memory. Neuroscience, 139(1), 201-208.

Barac, R., Bialystok, E., Castro, D. C., & Sanchez, M. (2014). The cognitive development of young dual language learners: A critical review. Early Childhood Research Quarterly, 29(4), 699-714.

Berninger, V., Abbott, R., Cook, C. R., & Nagy, W. (2016). Relationships of attention and executive functions to oral language, reading, and writing skills and systems in middle childhood and early adolescence. Journal of Learning Disabilities, 1-16.

Bialystok, E., & Senman, L. (2004). Executive processes in appearance-reality tasks: The role of inhibition of attention and symbolic representation. Child Development, 75(2), 562-579.

Boets, B., Wouters, J., Van Wieringen, A., De Smedt, B., & Ghesquiere, P. (2008). Modelling relations between sensory processing, speech perception, orthographic and phonological ability, and literacy achievement. Brain and Language, 106(1), 29-40.

Dice, J. L., & Schwanenflugel, P. (2012). A structural model of the effects of preschool attention on kindergarten literacy. Reading and Writing, 25(9), 2205-2222.

Foy, J. G., & Mann, V. A. (2013). Bilingual children show advantages in nonverbal auditory executive function task. International Journal of Bilingualism, 18(6), 717-729.

Franceschini, S., Gori, S., Ruffino, M., Pedrolli, K., & Facoetti, A. (2012). A causal link between visual spatial attention and reading acquisition. Current Biology, 22(9), 814-819.

Gioia, G. A., Isquith, P. K., Guy, S. C., & Kenworthy, L. (2000). Behavior rating inventory of executive function: BRIEF. Odessa, FL: Psychological Assessment Resources.

Lobier, M., Zoubrinetzky, R., & Valdois, S. (2012). The visual attention span deficit in dyslexia is visual and not verbal. Cortex, 48(6), 768-773.

McVay, J. C., & Kane, M. J. (2012). Why does working memory capacity predict variation in reading comprehension? On the influence of mind wandering and executive attention. Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, 141(2), 302.

Miller, A. C., Fuchs, D., Fuchs, L. S., Compton, D., Kearns, D., Zhang, W., ..., & Kirchner, D. P. (2014). Behavioral attention: A longitudinal study of whether and how it influences the development of word reading and reading comprehension among at-risk readers. Journal of Research on Educational Effectiveness, 7(3), 232-249.

Morton, J. B., & Harper, S. N. (2007). What did Simon say? Revisiting the bilingual advantage. Developmental Science, 10(6), 719-726.

Pagani, L. S., Fitzpatrick, C., & Parent, S. (2012). Relating kindergarten attention to subsequent developmental pathways of classroom engagement in elementary school. Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology, 40(5), 715-725.

Rhoades, B. L., Warren, H. K., Domitrovich, C. E., & Greenberg, M. T. (2011). Examining the link between preschool social-emotional competence and first grade academic achievement: The role of attention skills. Early Childhood Research Quarterly, 26(2), 182-191.

Sadeh, A., Gruber, R., & Raviv, A. (2002). Sleep, neurobehavioral functioning, and behavior problems in school‐age children. Child Development, 73(2), 405-417.

Sharkey, P. T., Tirado-Strayer, N., Papachristos, A. V., & Raver, C. C. (2012). The effect of local violence on children's attention and impulse control. American Journal of Public Health, 102(12), 2287-2293.

Stevens, C., Harn, B., Chard, D. J., Currin, J., Parisi, D., & Neville, H. (2013). Examining the role of attention and instruction in at-risk kindergarteners: Electrophysiological measures of selective auditory attention before and after an early literacy intervention. Journal of Learning Disabilities, 46(1), 73-86.

Swanson, J. M., Schuck, S., Porter, M. M., Carlson, C., Hartman, C. A., Sergeant, J. A., ... & Wigal, T. (2012). Categorical and dimensional definitions and evaluations of symptoms of ADHD: History of the SNAP and the SWAN rating scales. The International Journal of Educational and Psychological Assessment, 10(1), 51-70.

Van der Niet, A. G., Hartman, E., Smith, J., & Visscher, C. (2014). Modeling relationships between physical fitness, executive functioning, and academic achievement in primary school children. Psychology of Sport and Exercise, 15(4), 319-325.

Vitiello, V. E., Greenfield, D. B., Munis, P., & George, J. (2011). Cognitive flexibility, approaches to learning, and academic school readiness in head start preschool children. Early Education and Development, 22(3), 338-410.

Williford, A. P., Vick Whittaker, J. E., Vitiello, V. E., & Downer, J. T. (2013). Children's engagement within the preschool classroom and their development of self-regulation. Early Education and Development, 24(2), 162-187.

Ziegler, J. C., Pech‐Georgel, C., Dufau, S., & Grainger, J. (2010). Rapid processing of letters, digits and symbols: What purely visual‐attentional deficit in developmental dyslexia? Developmental Science, 13(4), F8-F14.