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Context Regulation of Mind Wandering in ADHD

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Natali Bozhilova, Giorgia Michelini, Christopher Jones, Jonna Kuntsi, Katya Rubia, Philip Asherson

Original languageEnglish
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Attention Disorders
Issue number14
Early online date18 Sep 2020
Accepted/In press1 Jan 2020
E-pub ahead of print18 Sep 2020

King's Authors


Objective: We aimed to understand the association between MW frequency and clinical measures, context regulation of MW and group differences in task performance. Method: 27 adults with ADHD and 29 controls performed tasks manipulating demand on working memory and sustained attention, and recorded their MW frequency using probes. Results: A significant association between MW frequency and the clinical measures was demonstrated. Along with increased MW frequency, individuals with ADHD reported decreasing MW frequency during increasing demands on working memory (context regulation), but not on sustained attention (deficient context regulation). Controls, however, maintained continuous task focus across all conditions. Group differences in task performance were no longer significant after adding MW frequency as a covariate. Conclusion: Deficient context regulation during increasing demands on sustained attention suggests that sustained attention deficits may play a more important role in regulation of MW in ADHD. MW frequency might also underpin performance deficits in ADHD.

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