ADHD is a neurodevelopmental disorder characterized by inattentiveness, impulsivity, and hyperactivity. Due to these characterizations, children with ADHD typically exhibit lower academic performance which has been improved by spacing out academic training. Yet no study has performed spacing in an ADHD population. Spaced training involves studying over short periods for multiple days rather than multiple hours in one day, or massed training. Using a rat model of ADHD, known as the SHR strain, the present study assessed how spacing training from 90-trials a day to 45-trials a day in the 5CSRTT would improve performance abilities. Additionally, the impact of spaced training on object displacement was assessed. Lastly, activity levels confirmed the SHR hyperactive phenotype. It was found that spacing was beneficial during earlier levels of 5CSRTT training, that required less focused attention. In addition, during the earliest level of training, males in the spaced condition benefited more than females, closing the previously reported sex gap. Due to the hyperexploratory nature of the SHR, spacing did not influence the ability to recognize the displaced object, and spaced training in 5CSRTT did not impact hyperactivity in the open field. These findings imply that by simply spacing out training, the SHR rats demonstrate a significant improvement in some training levels of the 5CSRTT. Future studies should assess spacing academic work and attentiveness training in children with ADHD.


Stavnezer, Amy Jo




Animal Studies | Developmental Psychology | Disability Studies | Social and Behavioral Sciences

Publication Date


Degree Granted

Bachelor of Arts

Document Type

Senior Independent Study Thesis Exemplar



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