Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology

, Volume 12, Issue 1, pp 55–77 | Cite as

Self-control in hyperactive boys in anger-inducing situations: Effects of cognitive-behavioral training and of methylphenidate

  • Stephen P. Hinshaw
  • Barbara Henker
  • Carol K. Whalen


The effects of cognitive-behavioral intervention and methylphenidate on anger control in hyperactive boys were investigated in two studies. The anger-inducing stimuli in both studies involved verbal provocation from peers. Study 1 assessed a brief intervention using self-control strategies, while Study 2 employed a longer training period and a control intervention that focused on enhancement of empathy. Both studies included methylphenidate versus placebo comparisons. Methylphenidate reduced the intensity of the hyperactive boys' behavior but did not significantly increase either global or specific measures of self-control. Cognitive-behavioral treatment, when compared to control training, was more successful in enhancing both general self-control and the use of specific coping strategies. There was no advantage for the combination of methylphenidate plus cognitive-behavioral intervention. Implications for intervention to ameliorate the social and interpersonal difficulties of hyperactive children are discussed.


Placebo Control Intervention Coping Strategy Methylphenidate Training Period 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Publishing Corporation 1984

Authors and Affiliations

  • Stephen P. Hinshaw
    • 2
  • Barbara Henker
    • 2
  • Carol K. Whalen
    • 1
  1. 1.University of CaliforniaIrvine
  2. 2.Department of PsychologyUniversity of CaliforniaLos Angeles

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