Date of Submission


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Psychology (PsyD)



Department Chair

Robert A DiTomasso, PhD, ABPP

First Advisor

George McCloskey, PhD

Second Advisor

Jessica Glass Kendorski, PhD, NCSP, BCBA-D

Third Advisor

Joseph Davidow, EdD


School systems function in a way determining that all students are expected to perform at a certain level based on the grade that they are in. Academic tasks involve many executive skills to be used at any given time, making it sometimes difficult to differentiate between specific executive strengths and weaknesses. Understanding a student’s challenges with executive control can lead to an understanding of places where additional help and support could be beneficial. The purpose of the present study is to examine gender differences in children’s and adolescents’ executive capacities, based on teachers’ ratings collected during the standardization of the MEFS-TR. The data used in this study were the teacher ratings of female and male students in the standardization sample that were used to create the MEFS-TR norm tables (n = 1,000). Teacher ratings reflected teacher perceptions of the frequency and effectiveness of students’ performances of behaviors that reflected the degree of use or disuse of executive capacities. This study compared the pattern of executive function deficits (EFDs) and executive skill deficits (ESDs) between males and females. Analyses examined teacher responses to all of the items of the 7 Self-Regulation Clusters and all of the items of the Self-Realization and Self- Determination Clusters of the MEFS. Results provide evidence that executive capacities differ among items within all 7 self-regulation clusters do indicate statistically significant differences in teacher ratings of male and female students, wherein male students were rated as exhibiting more executive function deficits and more executive skill deficits than female students. Additionally, even for items where differences were not statistically significant, larger percentages of male students were rated more frequently by teachers as having EFDs or ESDs than female students.