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Adult women with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) are diagnosed at a significantly lower rate than adult men and children. As children, ADHD presents itself in classroom behaviors, like a difficulty in concentrating, staying on task, and interrupting the lesson. For girls and especially adult women, these symptoms are not as obvious as they are in men, which results in a significant lack of research about women with ADHD. In Women with ADHD, Roberta Sanders notes that “there is a tendency for girls to be diagnosed with [the ADHD Inattentive type] more than boys and it prevails in older children and adults rather than younger ones.” According to a study entitled “Symptom Level Associations Between Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder and School Performance,” researchers found children between 8-17 years old have a more difficult time with reading and writing comprehension than other subjects. This data was higher among girls with the ADHD Inattentive type. This study on focuses on college women in writing-intensive programs, 18 years and older attending Utah State University, who have been diagnosed with ADHD. The methodology includes an anonymous and voluntary survey sent through the university Disability Research Center (DRC) and a case study of an English major who self-identified as having ADHD, and an interview with a DRC staff member. Writing requires the integration of multiple skills. While writing processes are unique to each writer, ADHD women may face additional challenges. ADHD brains process information differently and writers may have to “work with their brain” to develop a writing process that will help them. Because a lack of research exists about women writers with ADHD, we believe this study has the potential to provide valuable insights and to find a correlation in writing processes and ADHD. This study is in compliance with IRB standards for classroom research.

Publication Date



Logan, UT


writing, ADHD, writing process, sensory stimulants


English Language and Literature | Technical and Professional Writing

Working With Your Brain: A Case Study of the Writing Processes of Women Writers With ADHD