Erika Coles

Erika ColesErika K. Coles, Ph.D.
Phone: (207) 581-2826

Research Interests
My research focuses on psychosocial interventions for ADHD. Because children with ADHD often have difficulties in the school setting, within the context of the family-child relationship, and in relating to their peers, I am interested in conducting research in all settings in which children are impaired.

The research that is currently being conducted in my lab focuses on three different aspects of the implementation of treatment for ADHD. First, I am currently collecting data investigating the role of motivation for change in outcomes of parents attending a behavioral parent training class. While we know that behavioral parent training is an empirically supported treatment for ADHD, I am interested in investigating why it can be difficult to engage parents in treatment. The long-term goal of this study is to determine whether there are ways to increase engagement and compliance so that a greater number of children and families can be treated successfully.

My lab is also interested in basic research investigating the use of behavior modification in children with ADHD. Such questions include what is the best sequence of treatments for children, in what intensity, and in what settings. We are going to be conducting a Summer Treatment Program, an intensive behavioral intervention for children, in the summer of 2008, where we will continue to collect data to help answer these questions.

We are also interested in how children with ADHD can be best treated in the classroom. Teacher knowledge, training, and willingness to implement behavioral interventions have important implications for treatment. Similar to concerns about parental engagement in treatment, I am interested in investigating what may be barriers to teachers implementing behavioral interventions. The goal of this line of research is to help disseminate empirically supported interventions into the classroom.

Representative Publications

  • Coles, E.K., Pelham, W.E., Gnagy, E.M., Burrows-MacLean, L., Fabiano, G.A., Chacko, A., Wymbs, B.T., Tresco, K.T., Walker, K.S., Robb, J.A. (2005). A controlled evaluation of behavioral treatment with children with ADHD attending a summer treatment program. Journal of Emotional and Behavioral Disorders,13(2), 99-112.
  • Coles, E.K., Pelham, W.E., Gnagy, E.M. (under review). Assessing parental attributions for success and failure in managing deviant child behavior.
  • Fabiano, G.A., Pelham, W.E., Gnagy, E.M., Burrows-MacLean, L., Coles, E.K., Chacko, A., Wymbs, B.T., Walker, K.S., Arnold, F., Garefino, A., Keenan, J.K., Onyango, A.N., Hoffman, M.T., Massetti, G.M., & Robb, J.A. (in press). The single and combined effects of multiple intensities of behavior modification and multiple intensities of methylphenidate in a classroom setting. School Psychology Review.