Smart But Scattered Adults: How to Work with Clients to Strengthen Executive Skills

New! Filmed Spring 2021

Presented by Peg Dawson, Ed.D., NCSP

On Demand | Available Now


6 Hours  |   Pre-approved for 6 CEUs


This On Demand course and will be available after purchase. Participants can watch, pause, and re-watch the sessions at their convenience.

Recored footage and all course content (certificate, videos, quiz) will be available until May 6, 2022. Extensions cannot be granted under any circumstances. 

Registration will close on April 22, 2022

Even highly motivated clients with ADHD struggle to follow through on the changes they need to make in their lives to improve their physical or emotional well-being. They know they need to change, they know what they need to do to change, they may even be able to take a step or two toward making those changes—and then they plateau or give up. What’s getting in the way is not their unwillingness or resistance to change, but weak executive skills.

Executive skills are underlying brain processes that help people manage their everyday lives, get things done, control their emotions, and help them manage obstacles that interfere with productivity and behaviour change. Experts on ADHD now recognize that deficits in executive functioning lie at the root of this disorder. The frontal lobes, where executive skills are managed, don’t reach full maturation in typical adults until the middle of the third decade of life; in individuals with ADHD, a developmental lag slows down the process still further. As a result, many adults with ADHD fail to finish college, hold down a job or progress in a career, and struggle to maintain satisfactory relationships with friends and family. Failure and the recognition that they are working well below their potential erode self-confidence, eat away at self-esteem, and may lead to other mental health problems such as anxiety, depression, and substance abuse.

This seminar, led by one of the authors of some of the most popular and well-regarded books on the topic, including The Smart but Scattered Guide to Success, will share cutting edge neuroscience on executive functioning and will provide practical strategies clinicians can use with ADHD clients to help them work around or overcome the obstacles presented by weak executive skills. Armed with the knowledge gained in this seminar, participants will be able to help their clients assess their own executive skill strengths and weaknesses and create an action plan that is realistic and leads to true and lasting change.

  • Understanding the Executive in Your Brain
  • Key Strategies for Coping with Weak Executive Skills
  • Environmental modifications to reduce the impact of executive skill challenges
  • Strategies for improving executive skills
  • The Impact of Executive Skills in Daily Life
  • Executive skills in the workplace
  • Executive skills in the home
  • Executive skills in relationships
  • Strategies for Individual Executive Skills
  • A prescription for preserving executive skills
  • Compare and contrast assessment tools to determine clients’ profiles of executive skill strengths and weaknesses.
  • Direct clients on the best way to restructure their environment to reduce the impact of weak executive skills.
  • Build a realistic change plan that enables ADHD clients to improve executive skills in situations and settings they identify as problematic.
  • Discuss effective strategies ADHD clients can use to cope with executive skill challenges in the workplace, the home and in relationships.
  • Identify tools to enhance 12 executive skill domains.

Clinical Professionals: All mental health professionals including, but not limited to Clinical Counsellors, Psychologists, Psychotherapists, Social Workers, Nurses, Occupational Therapists, Hospice and Palliative Care Workers, School Counsellors, Youth Workers, Mental Health Workers, Addiction Specialists, Marital & Family Therapists, Speech Language Pathologists, Vocational Rehabilitation Consultants and all professionals looking to enhance their therapeutic skills.

Peg Dawson, Ed.D., NCSP: In over 40 years of clinical practice, Dr. Peg Dawson, Ed.D., NCSP, has worked with thousands of children and teens who struggle at home and in school. At the centre of their struggles are often weak executive skills. Along with her colleague, Dr. Richard Guare, she has written numerous books on this topic for educators, mental health professionals, and parents, among them Smart but Scattered, Smart but Scattered Teens, Executive Skills in Children and Adolescents, and Coaching Students with Executive Skills Deficits. Peg is also a past president of the National Association of School Psychologists, and the International School Psychology Association, and is a recipient of NASP’s Lifetime Achievement Award.

RegistrationEarly bird FeeRegular Fee
Individual Enrollment$249.00N/A
Full-Time Student$199.00N/A

All fees are in Canadian dollars ($CAD).

For group and/or student rates please view our Terms & Conditions and contact for more information and registration. 

  • Canadian Psychological Association
    The Alberta College of Social Workers (ACSW) and the Newfoundland and Labrador Association of Social Workers (NLASW) accept CPA-approved continuing education credits