Executive function is a heterogeneous construct applied to cognitive capacities that together enable individuals to effectively engage in activities toward a purposive goal. Children born at extremely low birth weight (ELBW) are at risk of executive dysfunction on performance-based measures. In natural contexts, executive function may be described using such parental and teacher questionnaires as the Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function (BRIEF). This study examined the factor structure of the BRIEF-parent form in 124 ELBW children and of the BRIEF-teacher form in 90 ELBW children. Although our data showed that the fit of a two-factor structure was adequate for the parent report, a three-factor model provided advantages over the two-factor model across all fit indices and best characterized the data. For teacher report, these data supported a three-factor but not a two-factor model. Using the three-factor model for both groups of informants, we compared parent and teacher reports (n = 90 pairs) between the three identified latent variables. Parents reported significantly more difficulty with Emotional Regulation (p <.05), and teachers reported significantly more difficulty with Behavioral Regulation (p <.05). No significant differences were found between parent and teacher reports for Metacognition.
- Behavior rating inventory of executive function
- Executive function
- Extremely low birth weight
- Factor analysis
- Factor structure