Measures and References: Inhibition

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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 Inhibition, in students aged five to 18 years

NEPSY-II Inhibition Subtest (Korkman et al., 2007): Subtest that requires students aged three through 16 to name items with its opposite (e.g. name "circle" for squares)

Peg-tapping (Diamond & Taylor, 1996): Task during which students are asked to tap a peg twice when the experimenter taps once and vice versa, which involves inhibiting the tendency to copy the experimenter and remember the correct rule to respond


Aguilar-Pardo, D., Martinez-Arias, R., & Colmenares, F. (2013). The role of inhibition in young children's altruistic behaviour. Cognitive Processing, 14(3), 301-307.

Altemeier, L. E., Abbott, R. D., & Berninger, V. W. (2008). Executive functions for reading and writing in typical literacy development and dyslexia. Journal of Clinical and Experimental Neuropsychology, 30(5), 588-606.

Barkley, R. (1997). Behavioural inhibition, sustained attention, and executive functions: constructing a unifying theory of ADHD. Psychological Bulletin, 121, 65-94.

Barkley, R. (2003). Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder. In E. J. Mash & R. Barkley (Eds.), Child psychopathology (2nd ed., pp. 75-143). New York: Guilford Press.

Blair, C., & Razza, R. P. (2007). Relating effortful control, executive function, and false belief understanding to emerging math and literacy ability in kindergarten. Child Development, 78(2), 647-663.

Bull, R., & Scerif, G. (2001). Executive functioning as a predictor of children's mathematics ability: Inhibition, switching, and working memory. Developmental Neuropsychology, 19(3), 273-293.

Carlson, S. M., & Wang, T. S. (2007). Inhibitory control and emotion regulation in preschool children. Cognitive Development, 22(4), 489-510.

Delis, D. C., Kaplan, E., & Kramer, J. H. (2001). The Delis-Kaplan executive function system. San Antonio, TX: The Psychological Corporation.

DePrince, A. P., Weinzierl, K. M., & Combs, M. D. (2009). Executive function performance and trauma exposure in a community sample of children. Child Abuse & Neglect, 33(6), 353-361.

Diamond, A., & Taylor, C. (1996). Development of an aspect of executive control: Development of the ability to remember what I said and to "do as I say, not as I do." Developmental Psychobiology, 29, 315-334

Fuhs, M. W., & McNeil, N. M. (2013). ANS acuity and mathematics ability in preschoolers from low-income homes: Contributions of inhibitory control. Developmental Science, 16(1), 136-148.

Gerstadt, C. L., Hong, Y. J., & Diamond, A. (1994). The relationship between cognition and action: Performance of children 3 1/2-7 years old on a Stroop-like day-night test. Cognition, 53(2), 129-153.

Gilmore, C., Attridge, N., Clayton, S., Cragg, L., Johnson, S., Marlow, N., … Inglis, M. (2013). Individual differences in inhibitory control, not non-verbal number acuity, correlate with mathematics achievement. PLoS ONE, 8(6), 1-9.

Gioia, G. A., Isquith, P. K., Guy, S. C., & Kenworthy, L. (2000). BRIEF: Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function. Odessa, FL: Psychological Assessment Resources.

Jacques, S., & Zelazo, P. D. (2001). The Flexible Item Selection Task (FIST): A measure of executive function in preschoolers. Developmental Neuropsychology, 20(3), 573-591.

Korkman, M., Kirk, U., & Kemp, S. (2007). NEPSY—Second Edition (NEPSY-II). San Antonio, TX: Harcourt Assessment.

McAuley, T., & White, D. (2012). A latent variables examination of processing speed, response inhibition, and working memory during typical development. Journal of Experimental Child Psychology, 108(3), 453-468.

Neuenschwander, R., Rothlisberger, M., Cimeli, P., & Roebers, C. M. (2012). How do different aspects of self-regulation predict successful adaptation to school? Journal of Experimental Child Psychology, 113(3), 353-371.

Robinson, K. M., & Dube, A. K. (2013). Children's additive concepts: Promoting understanding and the role of inhibition. Learning and Individual Differences, 23(1), 101-107.

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

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.