Examining Executive Functioning in Children with Externalizing and Internalizing Behaviors Using the BRIEF2
Many children struggle with externalizing and internalizing behaviors, with some reaching diagnosable levels. Research has suggested these children also have significant difficulty with executive functioning. The BRIEF is a behavior observation narrowband rating scale that is frequently used to identify executive dysfunction in children. However, with the new standardization of the BRIEF2, there is no research to date that uses this measure to identify executive dysfunction in children with externalizing and internalizing behaviors. The purpose of this study was to examine the use of the BRIEF2 teacher form for investigating the relation between externalizing and internalizing behaviors and executive functioning. Standardization data provided by the authors of the BRIEF2 were used for this study. Teachers of the subjects provided data regarding the subjects’ externalizing and internalizing behaviors using the BASC-2, as well as the subjects’ executive functioning abilities using the BRIEF2. Increases in domains of executive functioning were found to be significantly associated with behavior. Given that externalizing and internalizing behaviors are related to executive functioning, the current study provided further evidence that this relation is important, and the BRIEF2 may be considered an appropriate measure for this purpose.