A Systematic Review of Meta-Analyses of Psychosocial Treatment for Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder

  • Gregory A. Fabiano
  • Nicole K. Schatz
  • Ariel M. Aloe
  • Anil Chacko
  • Andrea Chronis-Tuscano


The present report synthesizes outcomes across meta-analyses of psychosocial (i.e., non-pharmacological) treatments for ADHD. A total of 12 meta-analyses were identified that met search criteria. The meta-analyses were notable in that there was surprisingly little overlap in studies included across them (range of overlap was 2–46 %). Further, there was considerable diversity across the meta-analyses in terms of the inclusion/exclusion criteria, types of psychosocial treatments reviewed, methodological characteristics, and magnitude of reported effect sizes, making it difficult to aggregate findings across meta-analyses or to investigate moderators of outcome. Effect sizes varied across the outcomes assessed, with meta-analyses reporting positive and significant effect sizes for measures of some areas of child impairment (e.g., social impairment) and small and more variable effect sizes for distal and/or untargeted outcomes (e.g., academic achievement). Results are reviewed in light of the larger literature on psychosocial interventions for ADHD, and specific recommendations for future meta-analyses of psychosocial treatments for ADHD are offered.


Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder Meta-analysis Psychosocial treatment 



During preparation of portions of this manuscript, Dr. Fabiano and Dr. Schatz were supported by funding from the Eunice K. Shriver National Institute for Child Health and Human Development Number R01HD58588.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Gregory A. Fabiano
    • 1
  • Nicole K. Schatz
    • 1
  • Ariel M. Aloe
    • 2
  • Anil Chacko
    • 3
  • Andrea Chronis-Tuscano
    • 4
  1. 1.University at Buffalo, SUNYBuffaloUSA
  2. 2.University at Northern IowaCedar FallsUSA
  3. 3.New York UniversityNew YorkUSA
  4. 4.University of MarylandCollege ParkUSA

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