The Effect of Focus Strategies on ADHD Students' English Vocabulary Learning in Junior High School

Masoud Khalili Sabet, Fatemeh Farhoumand, Amir Mahdavi Zafarghandi, Ashkan Naseh


"Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is the most common neurobehavioral disorder of childhood. ADHD is also among the most prevalent chronic health conditions affecting school-aged children"(American Academy of Pediatrics, 2000). Too many young girls are not getting the help they need because of hidden symptoms and late diagnosis. The purpose of this study is to determine the effect of focus strategies on vocabulary learning of ADHD students at two junior high schools. To this end, eight female ADHD and eight normal students from two public schools were assigned to the both control group and the experimental one. The quantitative data was gathered from each student and was analyzed through 2-way analysis of variance (ANOVA) in a factorial arrangement with two repetitions. An orthogonal test was used to compare the strategies that were used in the control group (word list) and the experimental group (key word method, concentration, making sentences and fold overs). The instrument of this study contained a questionnaire sent to the parents and English teachers, an interview with a psychologist, a pre-test and a post-test. The results indicated that the four focus strategies in the experimental group increased the vocabulary learning in ADHD students for the short term retention and this increase was significant in the first focus strategy (key word method) and mostly the last one (fold overs) in the normal and ADHD students. The mean scores of control group were lower than the treatment group both in the normal and ADHD students. The results of delayed post-test revealed that although focus strategies improved the scores of the normal students compared to the ADHD students, this difference was not significant.



ADHD, focus strategies, Key word method, fold overs, attention, two-way ANOVA

Full Text:



American Academy of Pediatrics (2000, May).Clinical Practice Guideline: Diagnosis and Evaluation of the Child with Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder. Pediatrics,105 , 1158- 1170.

Aizer. A. (2008). Peer effect, institution, and human capital accumulation: The externalities of ADD. Retrieved, September 11, 2013 from papers/w 14354

Armstrong, T. (1999). AAD/ ADHD alternatives in the classroom. Retrieved, August 15, 2013 from http :// www .ascd .org/ publications /books /199273/ chapters /Strategies -to-Empwer-Not-Controls-Kids-Labeled-ADD~ADHD.aspx

Baleghizadeh,S. & Ashoori,A. (2010).The effect of keyword and wordlist methods on immediate vocabulary retention of EFL learners.Pakistan Journal of social sciences (PJSS).30(2), 251-261.

Bolin, J. E.(2010).Improving the classroom for students: What are effective instructional strategies for children with attention deficits. Retrieved, September 18, 2013, from

Craik, F. I. M., and Lockhart, R. S. (1972). Levels of processing: a framework for memory research. Journal of Verbal Learning and Verbal Behavior, 11, 671-684.

Gadow,K.d., Sprafkin,J.(1994).Child Symptom Inventories manual.Stony Brook,Ny: Checkmate Plus.

Grunter, J. A. (2013). An update in attention deficit / hyperactivity disorder. Retrieved,September1,2013,from

Gurian,A. (n.d.). Girls with ADHD:overlooked, underdiagnosed, and underserved. Retrieved February 22, 2014, from http ://www.aboutourkids/articles/girls-adhd-overlooked-underdiagnosed-underserved

Jenpattarakul,W.(2012). The impact of keyword technique on the students' vocabulary retention ability in an EFL class. Mediterranean Journal of social sciences,3(3),565-573.

Kingsley, R. S. (2012). What is ADHD. Retrieved, January 31, 2013, from http: //

Mohammad Esmaeili, E. & Alipour, A. (2002). Reliability and validity of the Child Symptom Inventory-4 (CSI-4). Research of Exception Children,2 (3), 239-254.

Nation, I.S.P. (2008). Teaching vocabulary (strategies and techniques). Boston: Heinie.

O’Malley, J. M. et al (1985). Learning strategies application with students of English as a second language. TESOL Quarterly, 19, 285-296.

Oord, Bogels, & Peijnenburg. (2012) . The effectiveness of mindfulness training for children with ADHD and mindful parenting for their parents. Journal of child and family studies, 1,139-147.

Parker, H. C.(2006).Problem solver guide for students with ADHD. United States of America: Speciality Press.

Pressley, M., Levin, J. R., & McDaniel, M. A. (1987). Remembering versus inferring

what a word means: Mnemonic and contextual approaches. In McKeown, M. G. & Curtis, M. E. (Eds.), The Nature of Vocabulary Acquisition (pp.107-127). Hillsdale, New Jersey: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.

Scott, V. C, & Fark, K. (2011). Teaching students with ADHD to F.O.C.U.S: A learning strategy.RetrievedSeptember15,2013,fromwww./

Shaw, C. A., McEachern, J. C. (2001). Toward a Theory of Neuroplasticity.

Schmitt, N. (2002). An Introduction to Applied Linguistics. London: Arnold.

The five principles of effective second language acquisition. (2014). Retrieved, July 3, 2014,from language.html

Thompson. I. (1987). Memory in language learning. In A. Wenden 8J. Rubin (Eds(.Learner Strategies in Language Learning. (pp. 15-30). Newjersy: Prentic-Hall.

Tootkaboni,A.A.(2012).Recall of foreign-language vocabulary:Effects of keyword, context and wordlist instructional strategies on long term vocabulary recall of EFL learners.Journal of theory and practice in education,8(1),54-71.

Turketi, N. (2010). Teaching English to children with ADHD. Retrieved August 15, 2013, from

Yu, L. (2011).Vocabulary recognition and memorization: A comparison of two methods. Retrieved March 30, 2014, from http://www.diva-portal. Org/smash /get / diva 2:429600/FULLTEXT01.pdf



  • There are currently no refbacks.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

2012-2018 (CC-BY) Australian International Academic Centre PTY.LTD

International Journal of Applied Linguistics and English Literature

To make sure that you can receive messages from us, please add the journal emails into your e-mail 'safe list'. If you do not receive e-mail in your 'inbox', check your 'bulk mail' or 'junk mail' folders.