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Kloo, Daniela ORCID logoORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-7312-7892 and Kain, Winfried (2016): The direct way may not be the best way: Children with ADHD and their understanding of self-presentation in social interactions. In: European Journal of Developmental Psychology, Vol. 13, No. 1: pp. 40-51

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Knowledge and use of self-presentational tactics is an important social skill. We examined understanding of the function of three different self-presentational tactics (self-promotion, ingratiation and blasting) in 11 8–12-year-old boys with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and 11 matched comparison children. Children were given six different self-presentation stories, two for each one of the three different tactics. After each story, they were asked to evaluate the effects of the self-presentational tactic used. Children with ADHD rated self-promotion and blasting as more positive and more effective—and ingratiation as less positive and less effective—than children in the control group. This implicates that children with ADHD prefer simple and direct self-presentational strategies (like self-promotion), and, therefore, may not as easily understand more subtle strategies (like ingratiation). They also seem to be more inclined to use negatively connoted strategies (like blasting). We suggest that this limited understanding of self-presentational strategies in children with ADHD may explain some of their problems in social interactions. Therefore, social skill interventions in children with ADHD should incorporate elements focusing on use and understanding of different self-presentational strategies.

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