Coaching is an Effective ADHD Treatment Option

Does ADHD Coaching Work?



oaching is now recognized as a legitimate resource for learning how to live with ADHD. Family doctors, psychiatrists, and neuropsychologists refer for coaching as a management strategy for ADHD.

Studies are beginning to surface that show the results are positive. For example, in 2013, the Field and Parker study showed statistically significant higher executive functioning, particularly relating to well-being. Interviews conducted with students indicated that coaching helped them think about and work toward their goals more productively, manage their time and tasks more efficiently, and use more positive self-talk. 

Additional studies include:

Self-Control in Postsecondary Settings

Students’ Perceptions of ADHD College Coaching


Objective: The objective of this study was to identify undergraduates’ perceptions of the impact of ADHD coaching on their academic success and broader life functioning. 

Method: One-on-one interviews were conducted with 19 students on 10 different U.S. campuses who comprised a purposive sample of gender, cumulative grade point average, and self-regulation skills variables as measured by the Learning and Study Strategies Inventory. Interview transcripts were coded using NVivo 8 software, and emergent themes were triangulated with students’ descriptions of personal artifacts that symbolized coaching’s influence on their lives. 

Results: Students reported that ADHD coaching helped them become more self-regulated, which led to positive academic experiences and outcomes. Students described ADHD coaching as a unique service that helped them develop more productive beliefs, experience more positive feelings, and engage in more self-regulated behaviors. 


ADHD coaching helped participants enhance their self-control as they responded to the multifaceted demands of undergraduate life.

An Empirical Evaluation of ADHD Coaching in College Students


Objective: This study evaluated a program for ADHD coaching in a sample of college students. 

Method: ADHD coaching was conducted with 148 college students over a 5-year period. The theoretical orientation combined cognitive-behavioral therapy with psychoeducational techniques. Executive functioning served as a way of viewing both initial problem areas and outcomes. 

Results: Clients who received an 8-week coaching program showed significant improvement in all 10 areas of study and learning strategies, on self-esteem, and on measures of symptom distress and satisfaction with school and work. These results were consistent across different semesters and time of semester, and with a variety of different coaches, all of whom were novice coaches.


This study provides important preliminary information about ADHD coaching, including coaching structure, processes, efficacy, and correlates of positive outcomes. Additional evaluations utilizing a randomized controlled design are needed.

Learn how ADHD coaching helps adults and how ADHD coaching helps teens.