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    Joshua Kaufman
    Services Coordinator
    Student Support Services
    Western Carolina University
  • 2. Highlights from Denver AHEAD…..
    This is a summary of information by the following presenters at the National Association on Higher Education and Disability (AHEAD) Conference in Denver July 2010.
    For complete PowerPoint slides and handouts see the following website
  • 3. ADD a Chemical Imbalance
    Essentially ADD is a chemical imbalance
    Unless the chemical imbalance is addressed most other interventions will have limited success at best
    Medication is the currently the most effective treatment
    Cognitive Therapy, Skill Building, and Coun./Coaching
  • 4. 2 Major Neurotransmitters
    Dopamine and Norepinephrine
    These 2 chemicals are involved in many of the brain processes involved in Executive Functioning
    The difficulty arises when the brain either doesn’t produce enough or doesn’t reuptake and/or re-release appropriately
    80% of those treated respond well to appropriate medications
  • 5. Noteworthy ADD Biological Markers
    Very strong heritability .8 (approx. 3x higher than breast cancer)
    25% also show signs of dyslexia (gen. pop. 5%)
    Undersized Amygdala which is involved in emotional regulation such as anger, frustration tolerance, depression, and anxiety
    Further research will likely yield a blood test identifying which med(s) would be most effective for particular individuals
  • 6. Common Issues Associatedwith ADD/ADHD
    Low Self-esteem
    Lack self awareness and emotional regulation
    Problems self monitoring in social situations
    Low frustration tolerance
    Can display mild to moderate OCD type thinking and behaviors
  • 7. Common Issues Associatedwith ADD/ADHD
    Difficulties with procrastination and sustained effort/attention
    Lack time management skills
    Frequently have alertness and sleeping difficulties
    Reading fluency and concentration
    Writing difficulties; procrastination, task completion, slowed production
    Connecting, organizing and prioritizing information
  • 8. “Pills Don’t
    Teach Skills”
    *Favorite quote from the conference by Thomas E. Brown Ph.D.
  • 9. The Most Powerful Approaches Use:
    Medication Treatment combined with:
    Cognitive Therapy
    Skill Development
  • 10. Themes to guide strategies
    Education about the research is key for those with ADD, their families, counselors, instructors, etc.
    Structure, structure, structure
    Novelty - as long as it’s planned into the routine!
    Clearly defined expectations
    Multiple checklists and tracking devices
    Encourage the use of more of their senses
    Widgets or dog poop?!?
  • 11. Effective Strategies
    Provide appropriate referrals to campus and community support services
    Assist students in discovering their strengths and weaknesses
    Recommend a mix of required course with desired course
    Get to know your faculty
    Maintain a supportive attitude and be patient
  • 12. Effective Strategies
    Visual aids
    Integrate kinesthetic action
    Colored overhead sheets w/cutouts for reading
    Time management skills such as:
    Breaking large assignments into smaller tasks
    Setting intermediate deadlines
    Building in rewards that fit the individual
  • 13. Effective Strategies
    Personal counseling may address:
    Improved social interaction
    Self esteem issues
    Self regulation and awareness
    OCD type thinking
    Substance use/abuse
  • 14. In Your Interactions…..
    Ask open ended questions
    Keep them on task and don’t let them get you off track, don’t let them avoid the difficult questions
    Ask questions that lead to planning or strategy development
    What would you do it…..?
    What has worked for you in the past?
    How would you handle it if…..?
  • 15. Documentation
  • 16. What was the intent?
    The intent of the reauthorization is to move the focus (particularly in the work place) from showing “no disability exists” or “otherwise not qualified” to the provision of appropriate accommodations.
    The intent was to grant easier
    access to accommodations.
  • 17. Will Documentation Disappear?Not Likely
    Determine appropriate accommodations
    Determine specific deficits
    It is not the job of ODS’s to diagnose students’ disabilities/difficulties but rather to implement/provide appropriate accommodations
  • 18. Diagnostic Evidence Should…
    Be determined on a case-by-case basis
    Be an individual assessment
    Not take too long or be too time consuming
    Make basic sense, be legitimate and rational
    It can not be erroneous
  • 19. …and Demonstrate What?
    “Substantial limitation(s)”
    Specific reason for each accommodation
  • 20. What forms can we expect?
    IEP’s and similar evidence from the K-12 system
    Traditional diagnostic evidence
    Increased reliance on student interviews
  • 21. “Understanding Executive Functioning”
    Presenter Alicia Brandon
    Landmark College Institute for Research and Training
    For more information about Landmark College Institute of Research and Training go to
  • 22. “Helping to Improve Inadequately Treated ADD/ADHD”
    Presenter Thomas E. Brown Ph.D.
    Associate Director, Yale Clinic for Attention and Related Disorders, Department of Psychiatry, Yale Medical School
    For more information about Dr. Brown and ADD/ADHD go to
  • 23. Heyward, Lawton and Associates
    Presenter Salome Heyward, JD
    “[Dr. Heyward] is a civil rights attorney with over 30 years of experience and is a well-known and respected speaker and trainer in the area of disability discrimination law and disability management.”
    For more information about Dr. Heyward go to
  • 24. Questions/Comments