Executive Function Fact Sheet

By Confident Student


What is Executive Function?

“Executive Function” refers to high level cognitive processes that include both thinking skills and behavior skills. These abilities help us to decide what activities or tasks to pay attention to, and what choices to make.

 Thinking Skills Include:

· Planning

· Organization

· Time management

· Working memory

· Metacognition

 Behavior Skills Include:

· Response inhibition

· Self-regulation of affect

· Task initiation

· Flexibility

· Goal-directed persistence

 

These functions take place in the prefrontal cortex, an area in the brain that does not completely mature until adulthood.

People with Executive Function problems, otherwise known as Executive Dysfunction, have difficulty with planning, organizing and managing time and space. They also show weakness with “working memory,” vital in guiding one’s actions. Executive Function concerns tend to run in families, and typically present in the transitional stages from elementary to middle school, middle to high school and from high school to college, when schoolwork demands exponentially increase.

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