Award Date


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Educational Psychology & Higher Education

First Committee Member

Scott Loe

Second Committee Member

Tara Raines

Third Committee Member

Stefani Relles

Fourth Committee Member

Mary Spalding

Number of Pages



The transition to the middle school setting from elementary school has been the subject of research for decades as data shows a decline in academic success, socio-emotional health and motivation for students. There is a lack of research based transitional programs to support the needs of students at this time, specifically those with special needs. Though the name and specific criteria for students with ADHD has shifted, the impact this neurological disability has on students and learning is comprehensive. Symptoms of this disorder reach and affect each part of the student and their school experience, as well as those around them. The intersection of this disorder, pubertal timing, and the transition to middle school can amplify difficulties if the student experiences other adverse circumstances at the same time. The unique viewpoints of students who are experiencing this lend perspective to this distinct moment in time. This qualitative study sheds light on what these students perceive about the change from the elementary setting to that of middle school to better understand their needs and motivations. Their words potentially impact school psychology practice and programs for students with ADHD who are also experiencing at-risk factors.


ADHD; Intervention; Middle school; Orientation; School psychologist; Special education


Educational Psychology | Science and Mathematics Education | Special Education and Teaching

File Format


Degree Grantor

University of Nevada, Las Vegas




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