Investigating Executive Functions in Persian Typically-Developing Children Aged 4 to 6 Years
Introduction: Executive functions develop, particularly in the first 5 years of life. This study aimed to investigate the executive functions in Persian typically-developing (TD) children aged 4 to 6 years.
Materials and Methods: In this cross-sectional study, 50 children (21 girls and 29 boys) participated. Executive functions (planning/problem solving, inhibition, shifting, and working memory) were measured by various performance-based tests (the Tower of London, Go/No-Go, Dimensional Change Card Sorting task (DCCS), forward Digit Span (FDS), Backward Digit Span (BDS) and Non-Word Repetition (NWR) and Behavior Rating Inventory Of Executive Function (BRIEF) questionnaire). After collecting the data, they were entered into SPSS version 16.0, and data analysis was done by Mann-Whitney U test and two-tailed Spearman test. The significant level was set at 0.05.
Results: Regarding the age groups, 5-year-old children were significantly better than 4-year-old children in FDS and BDS, and regarding gender groups, performance-based tests were not significantly different between girls and boys but in the BRIEF questionnaire as parents reported, boys were significantly had better performance in daily life. BRIEF questionnaires in the boy’s group were correlated with FDS, BDS, the Tower of London, Go/No-Go, and DCCS. In the girl’s group, the BRIEF questionnaire was correlated with NWR and DCCS. In 4-year-old children, the BRIEF questionnaire was correlated with FDS, BDS, Go/No-Go, and DCCS. In 5-year-old children, the BRIEF questionnaire was correlated with BDS, the Tower of London, Go/No-Go, and DCCS.
Conclusion: It seems that TD children between the ages of 4-6 years can have different working memories but does not differ in skills such as problem-solving, shifting, and inhibition.
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