The Internal Restlessness Scale: Performance of College Students With and Without ADHD

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Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) was previously believed to be a disorder of childhood, with symptoms attenuating at the onset of puberty. Follow-up studies, however, suggest that the majority of children with ADHD continue to manifest symptoms into adulthood. Although the inattention components associated with ADHD persist into adulthood, the nature of the hyperactivity component is less well understood. For example, according to criteria established by the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, fourth edition, hyperactivity in adolescents and adults may be limited to subjective feelings of restlessness. Recent studies with adults with ADHD have also reported that mental restlessness is commonly reported by individuals with the disorder. To better understand this characteristic of ADHD, the Internal Restlessness Scale (IRS) was developed. The results of the IRS suggest that (a) college students with ADHD report significantly higher ratings of internal restlessness than college students without ADHD, and (b) the IRS appears to have adequate test—retest reliability and a four-factor structure. Implications and suggestions for future research are discussed.


This article was originally published in Journal of Learning Disabilities. The full-text article from the publisher can be found here.

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Journal of Learning Disabilities


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