Het verschil in executief functioneren tussen de klinische groep peuters van het Peuterplus!-project en peuters zonder ontwikkelingsproblemen? En zijn hierin leeftijd en/of sociaaleconomische status verschillen?
Batenburg, C. van
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Background. Until now, few research has been conducted about executive functioning among toddlers. Research that has been conducted shows a positive influence of good executive functioning on various areas. For this reason, among others, it is important to investigate this domain among toddlers. Objective. This study examined whether there is a difference in executive functioning between toddlers with and without developmental problems. Developmental problems are operationalised as symptoms of ‘Attention Hyperactive Deficit Disorder’ or symptoms of ‘Autism Spectrum Disorder’. Thereby, the influence of age and Socio-Economic Status (SES) are also been taken into account. Method. To investigate this difference, 168 toddlers were tested. To measure the executive functioning, three tasks were included: the ‘attention task’, ‘reverse categorization task’, and the ‘working memory task’. A questionnaire is filled in by the parents of the toddlers to gather information concerning the age and SES. Results. Results showed that the control group scored significantly higher than the clinical group on executive functioning, even after controlling for age. In addition, results revealed that there is an effect from SES on executive functioning among toddlers. Higher SES indicated higher executive functioning. Conclusion. Summarized, there is a difference in executive functioning between toddlers with and without developmental problems. The executive functioning of toddlers with developmental problems seems to be lower. Thereby, this difference stays equal across age. When the influence of SES is taken into account, this study found that growing up within a high SES, seems to be related to higher executive functioning among toddlers.