Date of Submission


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Psychology (PsyD)



Department Chair

Robert A DiTomasso, PhD, ABPP, Chair, Department of Psychology

First Advisor

George McCloskey, PhD, Chairperson

Second Advisor

Shannon Sweitzer, PhD

Third Advisor

William F Young, PhD


The current study surveyed middle school teachers on their knowledge, attitudes, beliefs, and expectations regarding executive functions in relation to students’ academic success. The results of this study indicated that teachers perceived themselves as knowledgeable of executive functions. A disconnect was found between teacher responses to an open-ended question regarding abilities and skills required for academic success and their endorsements of specific questions regarding executive functions. Motivation, problem-solving, and basic academic skills were indicated as being most important for success, but two of these are considered capacities students possess intrinsically. When asked about specific executive functions however, they rated them as being important to success, indicated that they could be taught and indicated that that they were actually teaching them to students despite not having received training and not being familiar with executive function resources.