The impact of voice amplification on the speed of direction following behavior with students with attention deficit disorder (ADHD)

2006 2006

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Abstract (summary)

Students with disabilities, particularly those with ADHD, may be noncompliant, aggressive, or may exhibit other difficult behaviors. Classrooms that are noisy and hinder their ability to hear teacher directions may exacerbate these problems. Most approaches to treat ADHD are of the medical variety, but many classroom teachers indicate that management in the classroom is still a challenge. Teachers prefer to use methods that are effective, yet easy to manage. One such method has received little attention, but may be both effective and easy to manage, sound field amplification (SFA).

SFA amplifies the speaker's voice through loud speakers placed strategically throughout the classroom. This amplification makes it easier to hear teacher directions. If a direction can not be heard, it cannot be followed and the converse is also true.

The purpose of this multiple baseline study was to observe three students with ADHD across three content areas to determine if they followed directions more quickly with the teacher's voice amplified than without amplification. Data were collected on different types of directions: high interest (something the student would likely want to do), task demand (something the student would likely not want to do), alpha (short, concise commands), and beta (long, wordy, unclear commands).

Results indicated that all participants followed all types of directions across all content areas more quickly when they were amplified. The increase in speed happened immediately upon the introduction of SFA into the environment.

These results may form the basis for decisions by school districts to purchase, install and maintain SFA systems in classrooms to improve the signal to noise ratio. If teachers can spend less time managing behavior, this should leave more time for them to teach which could lead to increased student achievement. In the era of "No Child Left Behind", any relatively inexpensive tool to potentially lead to growth in student achievement should be considered.

Indexing (details)

Special education
0529: Special education
Identifier / keyword
Education; Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder; Direction following; Voice amplification
The impact of voice amplification on the speed of direction following behavior with students with attention deficit disorder (ADHD)
Anderson, Jean Meister
Number of pages
Publication year
Degree date
School code
DAI-A 67/04, Dissertation Abstracts International
Place of publication
Ann Arbor
Country of publication
United States
Maag, John W.
The University of Nebraska - Lincoln
University location
United States -- Nebraska
Source type
Dissertations & Theses
Document type
Dissertation/thesis number
ProQuest document ID
Database copyright ProQuest LLC; ProQuest does not claim copyright in the individual underlying works.
Document URL
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