The classification and identification of children with attention deficit-hyperactivity disorder and related disorders involving learning and behavior are only rudimentarily developed. A major problem is the substantial overlap among children with attention, learning, and behavioral problems. The science of classification provides conceptual and methodological approaches addressing these problems. For successful classification of these children, major issues include (a) the need to provide explicit studies of identification criteria, (b) the need for systematic sampling strategies, (c) development of hypothetical classifications, and (d) systematic assessment of reliability and validity of hypothetical classifications. With the methodological advances provided by classification-oriented research, investigators and practitioners may be able to address issues involving definition and identification of children with attention and related disorders.
Fletcher, J.M., Morris, R. & Francis, D.J. (1991). Methodological issues in the classification of attention related disorders. Journal of Learning Disabilities, 24(2), 7277. Also reprinted (1992) in Shaywitz, S.E. & Shaywitz, B.A., (Eds.), Attention Deficit Disorder Comes of Age. Austin, Texas: Proed, 1327.