Working Memory: The Concurrent Validity of the Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function and the Relationship Between Parent and Teacher Ratings and Performance-Based Measures

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Milke, Ray M.
thesis / dissertation description
The primary purposes of this study were to investigate the concurrent validity of the Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function (BRIEF) with respect to the Woodcock-Johnson III Tests of Cognitive Abilities (WJ-III Cog),examine both teacher and parent ratings of working memory of at-risk students, and investigate parent and teacher differences in the ratings of male and female students. More specifically, this study examined whether the BRIEF rating scale can capture and accurately assess the complex cognitive processes of working memory and yield similar results to the established and accepted paradigm of working memory assessment utilized by the Working Memory Cluster of the WJ-III Cog. The results suggest that parents and teachers were inconsistent and rather dissimilar in their ratings, reflecting a lack of agreement of the level of impairment demonstrated by the students. The results are consistent with various studies that have demonstrated that the BRIEF assesses different constructs than that of performance-based measures (Anderson et al., 2002; Bakar et al., 2011; Bodnar et al., 2007; Conklin et al. 2008; Mahone et al., 2002; McAuley et al., 2010; Rosenthal et al., 2005; Toplak, et al., 2013; Vriezen & Pigott, 2002) and that these results appear to be true for both parents and teachers ratings. Until we have a better understanding of the specific constructs measured by the BRIEF, caution should be exercised when interpreting the results garnered from this instrument.