This study investigated the relationship between the inattention and impulsivity components of Attention-Deficit-Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and psychopathic tendencies in children with emotional and behavioural difficulties. Teachers rated 71 children on the Psychopathy Screening Device (Frick & Hare, 2000: Frick, P. J., & Hare, R. D. (2000). The psychopathy screening device. Toronto: Multi-Health Systems (in press)), the DuPaul's ADHD rating scale (DuPaul, 1991: DuPaul, G. J. (1991). Parent and teacher ratings of ADHD symptoms: Psychometric properties in a community-based sample. Journal of Clinical Child Psychology, 20, 245-253), and the Conners' Abbreviated Symptoms Questionnaire (Conners, 1973: Conners, C. K. (1973). Rating scales for use in drug studies with children. Pharmacotherapy of children [Special Issue]. Psychopharmacology Bulletin, 24-84). Significant inter-correlations between teachers' ratings of children's inattention and impulsivity and psychopathic tendencies were found. There were significant inter-correlations between teachers' ratings of the inattention and impulsivity components of ADHD and the Callous and Unemotional (C/UN) and Impulsivity and Conduct (I/CP) problems components of psychopathy. Further analysis revealed that the inter-correlations between these four components were mainly due to the association between the impulsivity component of ADHD and the antisocial behaviour (I/CP) component of psychopathy. The inattention component of ADHD was not related to either of the psychopathy risk measures. Equally, the distinguishing factor of the psychopathy (C/UN) was not related to either of the ADHD measures. A categorical analysis of the data revealed a higher than chance level of comorbidity of ADHD and psychopathic tendencies.
- Attention-deficit-hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)
- Psychopathy screening device (PSD)
ASJC Scopus subject areas