By David Giwerc, MCC, MCAC, BCC

Numerous studies have been conducted regarding the effectiveness of specific medical and psychological approaches on outcomes for persons diagnosed with ADHD. Fewer studies have been conducted that substantiate the effectiveness of specific coaching methods for persons diagnosed with ADHD.

The ADD Coach Academy (ADDCA) has partnered with the VIA Institute on Character to begin a multi-part research study to evaluate the hypothesis that knowledge of the client’s character strengths can make the ADHD coaching process more effective. We believe that understanding character strengths—the personality characteristics that when employed help us to feel engaged and successful—are a key to better managing ADHD. We are also hoping to learn whether ADHD conveys any discernable benefits to persons diagnosed with the condition.

How to Participate

Participants must be 18 years of age or older. Ideally, we are looking for participants who have been diagnosed with ADHD, but this is not a necessity. If you meet the age criteria, please consider taking a few minutes to complete the VIA Character Strengths survey. This will only take 15 – 20 minutes of your time, and you will be helping us learn more about the character strengths of people who have been diagnosed with ADHD.

Upon completion of the VIA Character Strengths survey, you will be able to download your individual Character Strengths Profile. Additionally, as a token of our appreciation for participating in our research, we will provide you with a $75.00 tuition discount coupon code. You will receive the coupon code upon completion of the survey and it can be used for registration in any future ADDCA program or course.

If you are interested in participating, please visit our website or email You will then receive an email with instructions on how to create a VIA profile, as well as the specific research code that will link your survey responses to our research.

About the Study

The impairments of ADHD have been extensively documented and comprise most of the published research on ADHD. This research focus has helped to increase the awareness of the challenges and struggles of ADHD, and has emphasized the importance of seeking and obtaining proper diagnosis/treatment of ADHD with a well-trained ADHD health care professional.

What is frequently overlooked in the published research is the possibility that ADHD may convey some benefits, and that adults with ADHD may therefore have important strengths as a result of their unique brain wiring. Whether or not ADHD conveys any benefits, we believe that first identifying and then using positive language to focus on the character strengths of adults affected by ADHD will engage their ADHD brains for greater activation and sustainment of energy.

The ADD Coach Academy (ADDCA) is hoping to discern the character strengths profile differences between individuals with a formal diagnosis of ADHD versus those without. The study will then determine if individuals diagnosed with ADHD will be able to utilize their core signature strengths for activating positive emotions in order to complete important tasks and goals.

The results of this pilot study could provide important insight and evidence for ADHD coaches to effectively utilize the VIA character strengths as an important tool for energizing and empowering their clients with ADHD.

About the Researchers

The VIA Institute on Character was established in 2001 as a non-profit organization. They manage the world’s largest and only free online, psychometrically valid and reliable survey on character strengths.

The ADD Coach Academy, founded by David Giwerc, MCC, MCAC, BCC, is the world’s foremost ADHD Coach training program. It is the only comprehensive ADHD Coach Training Program fully accredited by the International Coach Federation (ICF), the governing body of the life coaching profession, and the Professional Association of ADHD Coaches (PAAC), the certifying organization for the ADHD coaching profession.