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PLAY Study Design (Project to Learn About ADHD in Youth)

Project to Learn About ADHD in Youth (PLAY)Study Population

CDC funded two research sites, the University of South Carolina (principal investigator, Robert E. McKeown, PhD) and the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center (principal investigator Mark L. Wolraich, MD).

The study population includes six school districts with diverse populations from varied geographical settings to allow for better understanding of ADHD among a range of racial and ethnic groups including Hispanic, Black or African American, American Indian youth, in addition to Whites.

About the Study

My Story

collage of a diverse group of people

Personal stories from people who are living with ADHD.

More

The baseline assessment conducted between 2002 and 2006 included a 2-step screening process. First, teachers and parents of over 10,000 public school elementary students (K-6th grade) in the selected school districts were asked about signs and symptoms of ADHD in these children. Next, students with a high number of indicators from that screening and a subset of students with a low number of indicators from that screening were invited for an in-depth assessment.

A longitudinal study, tracking the same group of students over time, was also funded to learn more about the participants who completed the original in-depth assessment, and to follow them into middle and high school. The goal of the longitudinal PLAY study was to learn how this group of children changed and developed over time, and what role ADHD played in this development over time. This sample is different from many other studies of children diagnosed with ADHD because it includes children from the community, not enrolled through clinic visits, who were receiving the usual care for ADHD available to them. This data collection ended in 2012.

About the Measures

The study included information collected from parents, teachers, and from the child. The follow-up project spanned five years and included annual in-depth interviews, semi-annual data collection on a few measures, and brief quarterly contacts.

Assessment Matrix for PLAY Study

Follow up
Surveys/ Instruments
Baseline
Wave 1-2
Wave 3-4
Parent
OK
Annual
Semi-annual
Annual
Semi-annual
ADHD Treatment Questionnaire1
OK*
SC & OK
SC
ADHD Treatment, Cost, and Client Satisfaction
OK*
SC & OK
SC
ADHD Communication and Knowledge
SC & OK
SC
Brief Impairment Scale
SC & OK
SC
Critical School Events
SC & OK
SC
Demographic Survey
SC & OK
SC & OK
SC
Developmental Assets
SC
Diagnostic Interview Schedule for Children
SC & OK
SC & OK
SC
Health Risk Behavior Survey
SC & OK
SC & OK
SC
Parent-Child Relationship Inventory
SC
SC & OK
SC
Parents’ Mental Health Questionnaire
SC
SC & OK
SC
Parent Pediatric Quality of Life Inventory
SC
OK
Social Isolation/Support
SC & OK
SC
Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire
SC & OK
SC & OK
SC & OK
SC
SC
Vanderbilt ADHD Diagnostic Parent Rating Scale
SC & OK
SC & OK
SC & OK
SC
SC
Yale Global Tic Severity Scale2
OK
Child
Brief Sensation Seeking Scale
SC & OK
SC
Diagnostic Interview Schedule for Children
SC
SC & OK
SC
Health Risk Behavior Survey
SC & OK
SC
Inventory of Parent and Peer Attachment /People In My Life
SC & OK
Kaufman Brief Intelligence Scale3
SC & OK
Marsh Self-Description Questionnaire
SC
SC & OK
SC
Youth Demographic Survey
SC & OK
SC
Pediatric Quality of Life Inventory
SC
SC & OK
SC
Teacher
Vanderbilt ADHD Diagnostic Teacher Rating Scale
SC & OK
SC & OK
SC
Strengths and Difficulties impairment question
SC & OK
SC & OK
SC
Critical Events
SC & OK
SC

SC: Data collected in South Carolina
OK: Data collected in Oklahoma
*Measure was modified for follow up study

1 The ADHD treatment questionnaire and updates to Events and Demographics were also collected quarterly
2 These data were collected on 2 districts only, for an additional tic disorder study
3 For participants who did not attend Wave 1, this was administered at the first subsequent visit

Study Questions

The study was designed to better understand the public health impact of ADHD, including:

  • Short and long-term outcomes of children with ADHD
  • The prevalence and treated prevalence of ADHD in children
  • The existence of comorbid and secondary conditions in children with ADHD
  • The types and rates of health risk behaviors in children with ADHD
  • Current and previous treatment patterns of children with ADHD

Study Goals

This project was designed to provide information about the nature of community care for ADHD, the long-term trajectory of ADHD, associated health risk behaviors, and factors associated with obtaining treatment and other educational services. The data are also being used to examine the relationships between diagnoses, services received, demographic information, and ongoing symptoms and functional outcomes.

Learn more about the study findings to date.

 

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