Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a group of behavioural symptoms that include inattentiveness, hyperactivity and impulsiveness. If no hyperactivity is present, the term Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD) should be used.

Common symptoms of ADHD/ADD include:

  • a short attention span or being easily distracted
  • restlessness, constant fidgeting or over-activity
  • being impulsive

ADHD/ADD is more common in people with learning difficulties. People with ADHD/ADD may also have additional problems, such as sleep and anxiety disorders.

Autistic characteristics can co-exist with the conditions described above. Those affected often demonstrate unusual behaviours due to inflexible thinking, over-reliance on routines, and a lack of social and communication skills.

AJ-Books-2-2400px Impact on Study:


  • Most people with ADHD/ADD fail to make effective use of feedback
  • Unpredictable and inappropriate behaviour, blurting out inappropriate comments or interrupting excessively. Some people come across unintentionally as aggressive.
  • Lack of sleep and anxiety
  • Problems remaining focused so may appear ‘dreamy’ and not to be paying attention. People with this condition are very easily distracted, lose track of what they are doing and have poor listening skills. By failing to pay attention to details, they may miss key points


  • Miscommunications between student and tutor. Tutor may interpret student’s actions as ‘lazy’ or rude
  • Student may fall behind on work or misinterpret assignments, and struggle to catch up, consequently struggling to meet deadlines and fulfil their academic potential for assessment
  • If student does not learn from feedback, they may have difficulty progressing
  • Lack of sleep and anxiety may lead to physical exhaustion and genuine lack of motivation, and therefore poor quality work


Additional Information