School Experiences of Non-Medicated Children Diagnosed with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder
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The purpose of this study was to understand the school experiences and educational outcomes of young adults diagnosed with ADHD who utilized alternatives to ADHD medication to mitigate their symptoms throughout their public school years. Eight freshmen from a university in the southwest participated in this study over the summer of 2018. This qualitative study employed a constructivist analytical paradigm and a phenomenological theoretical perspective to understand the lived experiences of each participant. Data collection involved guided interviews, follow-up interviews, and memos. Findings revealed the participants diagnosed with ADHD in this study had positive school experiences and outcomes as the result of parent and educator support and the use of exercise as an alternative to ADHD medication. While parents provided communication with teachers, organization, and tutoring, teachers utilized classroom accommodations like preferential seating, tutoring, and organization to support students from elementary to high school graduation. This dissertation contributes to the growing literature on alternative treatments for children diagnosed with ADHD and sheds light on their school experiences and outcomes. The findings may support children diagnosed with ADHD, parents, educators, educational leadership faculty, and educational policy makers to consider alternative treatment options for students diagnosed with ADHD.