Attention-deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is a disorder that can adversely affect many areas of a person’s life. It is a common, yet complex disorder that can result in academic underachievement, emotional dysfunction, disruptive behavior, impaired social performance, working memory problems, and is often accompanied by Oppositional Defiant Disorder, and Conduct Disorder (Tarver, Daley, Sayal, 2014). There is no cure for ADHD, but treatment options include medication to manage symptoms and intervention strategies to teach students with ADHD skills that they may struggle with (i.e., planning and organization).
Managing a life filled with tests, projects, and assignments is a difficult task for students, particularly those with ADHD. Research has determined that “difficulties with organization of materials and time have been shown to predict grade point average above and beyond the impact of child intelligence” (Langberg, 2013). What can schools do to teach planning and organizational skills to students who struggle in these areas? Digital tools, like Schoology, can help all learners, especially those with ADHD, manage their workflow and organize their academic responsibilities.
Due to working memory deficits, keeping track of assignments and remembering teacher directions is not an easy task for a student with ADHD. “In the school setting, problems with organization manifest as lost or misplaced homework assignments, disorganized bookbag, locker, and binder systems for managing materials, and problems in adequately planning to complete homework assignments or study for tests” (Langberg, 2013). For students with ADHD who have more than one teacher, school may very likely seem overwhelming and impossible to manage. The Schoology tool can organize a student’s class schedule, and compile important due dates into one calendar. By clicking on tabs, students can easily switch between classes to view class content.
Transferring work to and from school is particularly challenging for a person with ADHD. By organizing their class content with Schoology, teachers provide students with ADHD a way to access assignments wherever internet access is available. With Schoology, a student can pull up their entire course load on their home computer, mobile device, in their local library, and of course, at school. Schoology eliminates the need to remember to bring home a specific assignment, which has the potential to greatly support students with ADHD academically.
Parent involvement is an important element in ensuring positive academic outcomes for students with ADHD (Tarver, Daley, Sayal, 2015). Schoology can serve as a communication tool between parents and teachers. The structure of the program ensures that parents are given the opportunity to be key players in helping their child develop necessary academic and life skills to be successful. Parents of children with ADHD can become frustrated because their child loses their homework or forgets about assignments altogether. When teachers use Schoology to post assignments, with detailed written instructions and listed due dates, students do not have to worry about filing a paper away for later retrieval and parents don’t have to worry about being out-of-the-loop. Students and parents can simply login to Schoology to view assignments, important dates, and grades. Schoology encourages the parent-teacher relationship, because class content and grades are posted in one place, and available for parents to monitor. This structure naturally invites parents to become partners in building academic success for students who have ADHD.
Schoology displays assignments and grades, provides online quizzes and tests, and creates a calendar for students with important dues dates. By using Schoology, schools can offer students a way to manage academic workflow in one place. It is no longer necessary to keep track of a physical planner, a couple binders, and several homework and class assignments. Long-lost crumbled papers, will no longer be spilling out of lockers and bookbags. Class materials can be digitized, stored, and organized in Schoology. All these services offered by Schoology provide students with ADHD the organizational support they need to thrive academically.
- Pictures are screenshots from the Schoology.com website.
Langberg, J. Becker, S. Epstein, J. Vaughn, A. (October 2013). Predictors of Response and Mechanisms of Change in an Organizational Skills Intervention for Students with ADHD. Journal of Child and Family Studies, 22(7), 1000-1012. Retrieved July 6th from http://web.b.ebscohost.com.proxy1.cl.msu.edu/ehost/pdfviewer/pdfviewer?sid=13f27790-80df-473e-bcea-4d9ec275fd14%40sessionmgr106&vid=9&hid=118
Tarver, J. Daley, D. Sayal, K. (November 2014). Attention-deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD): An Updated Review of the Essential Facts. Child: Care, Health, & Development, 40(6), 762-774. Retrieved July 6th, 2016 from http://web.b.ebscohost.com.proxy1.cl.msu.edu/ehost/pdfviewer/pdfviewer?vid=2&sid=13f27790-80df-473e-bcea-4d9ec275fd14%40sessionmgr106&hid=118
Tarver, J. Daley, D. Sayal, K. (January 2015). Beyond Symptom Control for Attention-deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD): What can Parents do to Improve Outcomes?. Child: Care, Health, & Development, 41(1), 1-14. Retrieved July 6th, 2016 from http://web.b.ebscohost.com.proxy1.cl.msu.edu/ehost/pdfviewer/pdfviewer?sid=13f27790-80df-473e-bcea-4d9ec275fd14%40sessionmgr106&vid=5&hid=118