Date of Award
Bachelor of Science
Objective: Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is a diagnosis often
comorbid with depression and anxiety-related disorders. Research is also indicative of a relationship between ADHD, depression, anxiety, and avoidance-related behaviors. I hypothesize that the relationship between ADHD and avoidance will be moderated by symptoms of depression and anxiety in neuro-typical college students that have not received a clinical mental health diagnosis. Method: 101 college students at the University of Richmond attended a baseline visit with a research assistant and completed baseline scale measures for symptoms of ADHD, depression, generalized anxiety, and avoidance. I used multiple regression and Hayes’ PROCESS program to analyze the relationships between these four variables and identify the presence or absence of moderation . Results: The four variables ADHD, depression, anxiety, and avoidance were significantly correlated with each other, but ADHD did not act as a statistically significant moderator. To further probe this relationship, I conducted a mediation analysis with ADHD as the independent variable, avoidance as the dependent variable, and depression/anxiety as mediators and did find a statistically significant mediating effect. Conclusion: These findings indicate that ADHD symptoms and depression/anxiety symptoms are not independent contributors to avoidant-related behaviors, which can have clinical significance for practitioners with clients suffering from one or multiple of these mental health diagnoses.
Wigginton, Ryan, "Does ADHD Strengthen the Relationship Between Depression/Anxiety and Avoidance?" (2022). Honors Theses. 1646.