Pharmacological and expectancy effects of 0.3 mg/kg methylphenidate on the behavior and attributions of boys with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder were evaluated. In a within-subject, balanced-placebo design, 136 boys received 4 medication- expectancy conditions. Attributions for success and failure on a daily report card were gathered. Assessments took place within the setting of a summer treatment program and were repeated in boys' regular classrooms. Expectancy did not affect the boys' behavior; only active medication improved their behavior. Boys attributed their success to their effort and ability and attributed failure to task difficulty and the pill, regardless of medication and expectancy. Results were generally equivalent across the two settings; where there were differences, beneficial effects of medication were more apparent in the school setting. The findings were unaffected by individual-difference factors.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Clinical Psychology
- Psychiatry and Mental health