College of Arts & Sciences

Date of Award

Winter 12-1993

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)



First Advisor

Linda M. Montgomery, Ph.D.

Second Advisor

James Olson, Ph.D.

Third Advisor

James J. Reeves


Parental perceptions of the family social environment were investigated for the families of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder boys (ADHD) and those families without Attention Deficit Disorder boys (Non-ADHD). Mothers and fathers from forty-four intact families (20 Non-ADHD; 24 ADHD) independently completed the Family Environment Scale (Form Real and Form Ideal), a symptomology checklist, and a parent stress questionnaire. The Family Environment Scale (FES) was used to identify the factors that were unique to the family of the ADHD children. Following the identification of subscale factors, the relationship between the FES factors and the ratings of the child's symptoms were examined. Families of ADHD children reported significantly less Expressiveness, Organization, Cohesion, and Active-Recreational Orientation, and reported significantly higher levels of Conflict. The family environment ratings of ADHD mothers correlated more often with the child's symptomology ratings. The discussion addresses the importance of including parental perceptions in a therapist's initial assessment.