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Linda Pfiffner, PhD

Title(s)Professor, Psychiatry
SchoolSchool of Medicine
Address401 Parnassus Ave.
San Francisco CA 94143
Phone415-476-7418
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    Other Positions
    Title(s)UCSF Weill Institute for Neurosciences


    Collapse Biography 
    Collapse Education and Training
    University of California Los Angeles, Los AngelesBA06/1981Psychology
    State University of New York at Stony Brook, Stony Brook, NYMA, PhD06/1987Clinical Psychology
    Collapse Awards and Honors
    2012CHADD Hall of Fame Award
    2009CHADD ADHD and Family Issues Award
    2004CHADD Innovative Program of the Year Award
    2017  - 2021President, Past President International Society for Research in Child and Adolescent Psychopathology

    Collapse Overview 
    Collapse Overview
    Linda Pfiffner, PhD is a Professor in Residence and Director of the Hyperactivity, Attention and Learning Problems (HALP) Program in the Department of Psychiatry and is a licensed Clinical Psychologist. She received her B.A. from UCLA and her Ph.D. from the State University of New York at Stony Brook. Prior to joining UCSF in 2001, she held academic appointments at UC Irvine and the University of Chicago. Her program of research centers on the development and evaluation of collaborative school-home psychosocial treatments for school-aged children with ADHD, the inattentive presentation of ADHD, and family/social factors in developmental models of ADHD and related problems. She has over 190 refereed articles, chapters, and scientific conference abstracts and has published a second edition to her handbook for teachers “All About ADHD: The Complete Practical Guide for Classroom Teachers,” Scholastic, 2011. For the past 25 years her research has been supported by multiple grants from NIMH and the Institute of Education Sciences (IES), US Department of Education.

    She developed the Child Life and Attention Skills (CLAS) Program, an integrated multi-component behavioral intervention for children with ADHD-Inattentive Presentation. CLAS has been evaluated in two NIMH-funded RCTs, one being a dual-site study, with positive effects on inattention symptoms and impairments. The program was awarded Innovative Program of the Year in 2004 by CHADD. She and her team adapted the program for youth with attention and behavioral concerns, developing the Collaborative Life Skills Program (CLS) for delivery by school-based mental health professionals in school settings. A recently completed IES-funded RCT shows significant treatment-related improvement on children’s ADHD symptoms, behavior, and academic and social functioning. She is currently developing a web-based, remote training program for school mental health providers in implementation of CLS with funding from IES.

    Dr. Pfiffner serves as Director of the Clifford Attkisson Clinical Services Research Training Program, an NIMH funded T32 which provides education and support to postdoctoral scholars from a variety of disciplines who plan to pursue careers in mental health services research. She serves on multiple editorial boards of leading psychology journals, was a former standing member of the NIMH ITVC IRG study section and a principal member of the Institute of Education Sciences’ Social and Behavioral Education Research Scientific Review Panel.

    Collapse Research 
    Collapse Research Activities and Funding
    A Digital Health Solution for Improving Parent Adherence and Sustainability of ADHD Treatment Outcomes
    NIH/NIMH R34MH122222Jul 1, 2020 - Jun 30, 2023
    Role: Principal Investigator
    Web-based professional development for school mental health providers in evidence-based practices for attention and behavior challenges
    Institute of Education Sciences, US Department of Education R324A150156Jul 1, 2017 - Jun 30, 2021
    Role: Principal Investigator
    Web-based professional development for school mental health providers in evidence-based practices for attention and behavior challenges
    Institute of Education Sciences, US Department of Education R324A150156Jul 1, 2017 - Jun 30, 2021
    Role: Principal Investigator
    Efficacy of the Collaborative Life Skills Program
    Institute of Education Sciences, US Department of Education R324A120358Jul 1, 2012 - Jun 30, 2018
    Role: Principal Investigator
    Integrated Multi-Setting Psychosocial Treatment for ADHD-Inattentive Type
    NIH/NIMH R01MH077671Jul 1, 2008 - May 31, 2014
    Role: Principal Investigator
    Collaborative School-Home Behavioral Intervention for ADHD
    Institute of Education Sciences R324A080041Apr 1, 2008 - Jun 30, 2012
    Role: Principal Investigator
    Psychosocial Treatment for ADHD Inattentive Type 1
    NIH/NIMH R21MH065927Sep 19, 2002 - Jun 30, 2007
    Role: Principal Investigator
    FAMILY FACTORS AND COMORBID DISORDERS IN ADHD CHILDREN
    NIH/NIMH R29MH050327Aug 1, 1993 - Jul 31, 1998
    Role: Principal Investigator
    Clinical Services Research Training Program
    NIH/NIMH T32MH018261Aug 1, 1985 - Jun 30, 2020
    Role: Principal Investigator

    Collapse ORNG Applications 
    Collapse Clinical Trials
    Collapse Websites
    Collapse In The News

    Collapse Bibliographic 
    Collapse Publications
    Publications listed below are automatically derived from MEDLINE/PubMed and other sources, which might result in incorrect or missing publications. Researchers can login to make corrections and additions, or contact us for help. to make corrections and additions.
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    Altmetrics Details PMC Citations indicate the number of times the publication was cited by articles in PubMed Central, and the Altmetric score represents citations in news articles and social media. (Note that publications are often cited in additional ways that are not shown here.) Fields are based on how the National Library of Medicine (NLM) classifies the publication's journal and might not represent the specific topic of the publication. Translation tags are based on the publication type and the MeSH terms NLM assigns to the publication. Some publications (especially newer ones and publications not in PubMed) might not yet be assigned Field or Translation tags.) Click a Field or Translation tag to filter the publications.
    1. Learning Disorder Confers Setting-Specific Treatment Resistance for Children with ADHD, Predominantly Inattentive Presentation. J Clin Child Adolesc Psychol. 2019 Aug 21; 1-14. Friedman LM, McBurnett K, Dvorsky MR, Hinshaw SP, Pfiffner LJ. PMID: 31433688.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions:    Fields:    
    2. The Collaborative Life Skills Program in Spanish (CLS-S): Pilot Investigation of Intervention Process, Outcomes, and Qualitative Feedback. Evid Based Pract Child Adolesc Ment Health. 2019; 4(1):18-41. Haack LM, Araujo EJ, Delucchi K, Beaulieu A, Pfiffner L. PMID: 31938725.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions:
    3. Correction to: Influences to ADHD Problem Recognition: Mixed-Method Investigation and Recommendations to Reduce Disparities for Latino Youth. Adm Policy Ment Health. 2018 11; 45(6):978. Haack LM, Meza J, Jiang Y, Araujo EA, Pfiffner L. PMID: 29995290.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions:    Fields:    
    4. Influences to ADHD Problem Recognition: Mixed-Method Investigation and Recommendations to Reduce Disparities for Latino Youth. Adm Policy Ment Health. 2018 11; 45(6):958-977. Haack LM, Meza J, Jiang Y, Araujo EJ, Pfiffner L. PMID: 29770911.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions:    Fields:    Translation:Humans
    5. Cost-Effectiveness of a Behavioral Psychosocial Treatment Integrated Across Home and School for Pediatric ADHD-Inattentive Type. Adm Policy Ment Health. 2018 09; 45(5):741-750. Tran JLA, Sheng R, Beaulieu A, Villodas M, McBurnett K, Pfiffner LJ, Wilson L. PMID: 29480503.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 1     Fields:    Translation:Humans
    6. Processing Speed Predicts Behavioral Treatment Outcomes in Children with Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder Predominantly Inattentive Type. J Abnorm Child Psychol. 2018 05; 46(4):701-711. Adalio CJ, Owens EB, McBurnett K, Hinshaw SP, Pfiffner LJ. PMID: 28791531.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 3     Fields:    Translation:Humans
    7. Sustained Effects of Collaborative School-Home Intervention for Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder Symptoms and Impairment. J Am Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry. 2018 04; 57(4):245-251. Pfiffner LJ, Rooney ME, Jiang Y, Haack LM, Beaulieu A, McBurnett K. PMID: 29588050.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 3     Fields:    Translation:Humans
    8. Improved Parent Cognitions Relate to Immediate and Follow-Up Treatment Outcomes for Children With ADHD-Predominantly Inattentive Presentation. Behav Ther. 2018 07; 49(4):567-579. Jiang Y, Haack LM, Delucchi K, Rooney M, Hinshaw SP, McBurnett K, Pfiffner LJ. PMID: 29937258.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions:    Fields:    Translation:Humans
    9. Parenting as a Mechanism of Change in Psychosocial Treatment for Youth with ADHD, Predominantly Inattentive Presentation. J Abnorm Child Psychol. 2017 Jul; 45(5):841-855. Haack LM, Villodas M, McBurnett K, Hinshaw S, Pfiffner LJ. PMID: 27628742.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 5     Fields:    Translation:Humans
    10. Patterns and Predictors of Service Utilization Among Youth With ADHD-Predominantly Inattentive Presentation. J Atten Disord. 2019 Sep; 23(11):1251-1261. Capriotti MR, Pfiffner LJ. PMID: 28064560.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 1     Fields:    
    11. Parent Adherence in Two Behavioral Treatment Strategies for the Predominantly Inattentive Presentation of ADHD. J Clin Child Adolesc Psychol. 2018; 47(sup1):S233-S241. Rooney M, Hinshaw S, McBurnett K, Pfiffner L. PMID: 27808556.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions:    Fields:    
    12. Predictors of Response to Behavioral Treatments Among Children With ADHD-Inattentive Type. J Clin Child Adolesc Psychol. 2018; 47(sup1):S219-S232. Owens EB, Hinshaw SP, McBurnett K, Pfiffner L. PMID: 27806212.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions:    Fields:    
    13. Parental Cognitive Errors Mediate Parental Psychopathology and Ratings of Child Inattention. Fam Process. 2017 09; 56(3):716-733. Haack LM, Jiang Y, Delucchi K, Kaiser N, McBurnett K, Hinshaw S, Pfiffner L. PMID: 27663189.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 1     Fields:    Translation:Humans
    14. Assessing Impairment in Childhood ADHD: Validation of the Parent and Teacher ADHD-FX Rating Scale in a Dual-Site Clinical Sample. J Atten Disord. 2019 Apr; 23(6):541-552. Haack LM, Gonring K, Harris M, Gerdes A, Pfiffner L. PMID: 27431931.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 3     Fields:    Translation:Humans
    15. A Randomized Controlled Trial of a School-Implemented School-Home Intervention for Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder Symptoms and Impairment. J Am Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry. 2016 09; 55(9):762-70. Pfiffner LJ, Rooney M, Haack L, Villodas M, Delucchi K, McBurnett K. PMID: 27566117.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 4     Fields:    Translation:Humans
    16. Sleep habits in children with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder predominantly inattentive type and associations with comorbid psychopathology symptoms. Sleep Med. 2016 05; 21:151-9. Becker SP, Pfiffner LJ, Stein MA, Burns GL, McBurnett K. PMID: 26922623.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 6     Fields:    Translation:Humans
    17. Parenting Mediates Symptoms and Impairment in Children With ADHD-Inattentive Type. J Clin Child Adolesc Psychol. 2016; 45(2):155-66. Haack LM, Villodas MT, McBurnett K, Hinshaw S, Pfiffner LJ. PMID: 25411896.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 4     Fields:    Translation:Humans
    18. Behavior management for school-aged children with ADHD. Child Adolesc Psychiatr Clin N Am. 2014 Oct; 23(4):731-46. Pfiffner LJ, Haack LM. PMID: 25220083.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 7     Fields:    Translation:Humans
    19. Meta-analysis supports efficacy of behavioral interventions for attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder-related problems. J Am Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry. 2014 Aug; 53(8):830-2. Pfiffner LJ. PMID: 25062589.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 4     Fields:    Translation:Humans
    20. Additive effects of parent adherence on social and behavioral outcomes of a collaborative school-home behavioral intervention for ADHD. Child Psychiatry Hum Dev. 2014 Jun; 45(3):348-60. Villodas MT, McBurnett K, Kaiser N, Rooney M, Pfiffner LJ. PMID: 24043560.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 3     Fields:    Translation:Humans
    21. A two-site randomized clinical trial of integrated psychosocial treatment for ADHD-inattentive type. J Consult Clin Psychol. 2014 Dec; 82(6):1115-1127. Pfiffner LJ, Hinshaw SP, Owens E, Zalecki C, Kaiser NM, Villodas M, McBurnett K. PMID: 24865871.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 11     Fields:    Translation:Humans
    22. Structure and validity of sluggish cognitive tempo using an expanded item pool in children with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder. J Abnorm Child Psychol. 2014 Jan; 42(1):37-48. McBurnett K, Villodas M, Burns GL, Hinshaw SP, Beaulieu A, Pfiffner LJ. PMID: 24258302.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 30     Fields:    Translation:Humans
    23. Negative social preference in relation to internalizing symptoms among children with ADHD predominantly inattentive type: girls fare worse than boys. J Clin Child Adolesc Psychol. 2013; 42(6):784-95. Becker SP, McBurnett K, Hinshaw SP, Pfiffner LJ. PMID: 23978167.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 9     Fields:    Translation:Humans
    24. Educational outcomes of a collaborative school-home behavioral intervention for ADHD. Sch Psychol Q. 2013 Mar; 28(1):25-36. Pfiffner LJ, Villodas M, Kaiser N, Rooney M, McBurnett K. PMID: 23506023.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 10     Fields:    Translation:Humans
    25. Prevention of serious conduct problems in youth with attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder. Expert Rev Neurother. 2012 Oct; 12(10):1253-63. Villodas MT, Pfiffner LJ, McBurnett K. PMID: 23082741.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 3     Fields:    Translation:Humans
    26. Child ADHD severity and positive and negative parenting as predictors of child social functioning: evaluation of three theoretical models. J Atten Disord. 2011 Apr; 15(3):193-203. Kaiser NM, McBurnett K, Pfiffner LJ. PMID: 20424006.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 14     Fields:    Translation:Humans
    27. Treatment of aggressive ADHD in children and adolescents: conceptualization and treatment of comorbid behavior disorders. Postgrad Med. 2009 Nov; 121(6):158-65. McBurnett K, Pfiffner LJ. PMID: 19940426.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions:    Fields:    Translation:Humans
    28. Can executive functions explain the relationship between Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder and social adjustment? J Abnorm Child Psychol. 2009 Jul; 37(5):679-91. Huang-Pollock CL, Mikami AY, Pfiffner L, McBurnett K. PMID: 19184400.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 24     Fields:    Translation:Humans
    29. A randomized, controlled trial of integrated home-school behavioral treatment for ADHD, predominantly inattentive type. J Am Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry. 2007 Aug; 46(8):1041-1050. Pfiffner LJ, Yee Mikami A, Huang-Pollock C, Easterlin B, Zalecki C, McBurnett K. PMID: 17667482.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 58     Fields:    Translation:Humans
    30. Sibling relationships among children with ADHD. J Atten Disord. 2008 Jan; 11(4):482-92. Mikami AY, Pfiffner LJ. PMID: 17494830.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 18     Fields:    Translation:Humans
    31. ADHD subtype differences in motivational responsivity but not inhibitory control: evidence from a reward-based variation of the stop signal paradigm. J Clin Child Adolesc Psychol. 2007 Apr-Jun; 36(2):127-36. Huang-Pollock CL, Mikami AY, Pfiffner L, McBurnett K. PMID: 17484686.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 24     Fields:    Translation:Humans
    32. Social skills differences among attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder types in a chat room assessment task. J Abnorm Child Psychol. 2007 Aug; 35(4):509-21. Mikami AY, Huang-Pollock CL, Pfiffner LJ, McBurnett K, Hangai D. PMID: 17354064.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 34     Fields:    Translation:Humans
    33. Family correlates of comorbid anxiety disorders in children with attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder. J Abnorm Child Psychol. 2006 Oct; 34(5):725-35. Pfiffner LJ, McBurnett K. PMID: 17039405.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 11     Fields:    Translation:Humans
    34. Treatment-related changes in objectively measured parenting behaviors in the multimodal treatment study of children with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder. J Consult Clin Psychol. 2006 Aug; 74(4):649-57. Wells KC, Chi TC, Hinshaw SP, Epstein JN, Pfiffner L, Nebel-Schwalm M, Owens EB, Arnold LE, Abikoff HB, Conners CK, Elliott GR, Greenhill LL, Hechtman L, Hoza B, Jensen PS, March J, Newcorn JH, Pelham WE, Severe JB, Swanson J, Vitiello B, Wigal T. PMID: 16881772.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 22     Fields:    Translation:Humans
    35. Impact of visual impairment on measures of cognitive function for children with congenital toxoplasmosis: implications for compensatory intervention strategies. Pediatrics. 2006 Aug; 118(2):e379-90. Roizen N, Kasza K, Karrison T, Mets M, Noble AG, Boyer K, Swisher C, Meier P, Remington J, Jalbrzikowski J, McLeod R, Kipp M, Rabiah P, Chamot D, Estes R, Cezar S, Mack D, Pfiffner L, Stein M, Danis B, Patel D, Hopkins J, Holfels E, Stein L, Withers S, Cameron A, Perkins J, Heydemann P. PMID: 16864640.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 14     Fields:    Translation:Humans
    36. Family correlates of oppositional and conduct disorders in children with attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder. J Abnorm Child Psychol. 2005 Oct; 33(5):551-63. Pfiffner LJ, McBurnett K, Rathouz PJ, Judice S. PMID: 16195950.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 36     Fields:    Translation:Humans
    37. Antisocial personality, substance abuse, and exposure to parental violence in males referred for domestic violence. Violence Vict. 2001 Oct; 16(5):491-506. McBurnett K, Kerckhoff C, Capasso L, Pfiffner LJ, Rathouz PJ, McCord M, Harris SM. PMID: 11688925.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions:    Fields:    Translation:Humans
    38. Father absence and familial antisocial characteristics. J Abnorm Child Psychol. 2001 Oct; 29(5):357-67. Pfiffner LJ, McBurnett K, Rathouz PJ. PMID: 11695539.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 13     Fields:    Translation:Humans
    39. Symptom properties as a function of ADHD type: an argument for continued study of sluggish cognitive tempo. J Abnorm Child Psychol. 2001 Jun; 29(3):207-13. McBurnett K, Pfiffner LJ, Frick PJ. PMID: 11411783.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 63     Fields:    Translation:Humans
    40. Parenting and family stress treatment outcomes in attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD): an empirical analysis in the MTA study. J Abnorm Child Psychol. 2000 Dec; 28(6):543-53. Wells KC, Epstein JN, Hinshaw SP, Conners CK, Klaric J, Abikoff HB, Abramowitz A, Arnold LE, Elliott G, Greenhill LL, Hechtman L, Hoza B, Jensen PS, March JS, Pelham W, Pfiffner L, Severe J, Swanson JM, Vitiello B, Wigal T. PMID: 11104316.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 41     Fields:    Translation:HumansCTClinical Trials
    41. Interventions to enhance social competence. Child Adolesc Psychiatr Clin N Am. 2000 Jul; 9(3):689-709, x. Pfiffner LJ, Calzada E, McBurnett K. PMID: 10944663.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 14     Fields:    Translation:Humans
    42. Evaluation of the validity of the Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children--Third Edition comprehension and picture arrangement subtests as measures of social intelligence. Psychol Assess. 2000 Mar; 12(1):97-101. Beebe DW, Pfiffner LJ, McBurnett K. PMID: 10752368.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 4     Fields:    Translation:Humans
    43. The child with congenital toxoplasmosis. Curr Clin Top Infect Dis. 2000; 20:189-208. McLeod R, Boyer K, Roizen N, Stein L, Swisher C, Holfels E, Hopkins J, Mack D, Karrison T, Patel D, Pfiffner L, Remington J, Withers S, Meyers S, Aitchison V, Mets M, Rabiah P, Meier P. PMID: 10943525.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 8     Fields:    Translation:Humans
    44. Association of parental psychopathology to the comorbid disorders of boys with attention deficit-hyperactivity disorder. J Consult Clin Psychol. 1999 Dec; 67(6):881-893. Pfiffner LJ, McBurnett K, Lahey BB, Loeber R, Green S, Frick PJ, Rathouz PJ. PMID: 10596510.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 12     Fields:    Translation:Humans
    45. Experimental cross-validation of DSM-IV types of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder. J Am Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry. 1999 Jan; 38(1):17-24. McBurnett K, Pfiffner LJ, Willcutt E, Tamm L, Lerner M, Ottolini YL, Furman MB. PMID: 9893412.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 20     Fields:    Translation:Humans
    46. Social skills training with parent generalization: treatment effects for children with attention deficit disorder. J Consult Clin Psychol. 1997 Oct; 65(5):749-57. Pfiffner LJ, McBurnett K. PMID: 9337494.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 32     Fields:    Translation:HumansCTClinical Trials
    47. ADHD and LD. J Learn Disabil. 1991 May; 24(5):258-60. McBurnett K, Pfiffner LJ. PMID: 2045720.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions:    Fields:    Translation:Humans
    48. Effects of maternal discipline and nurturance on toddler's behavior and affect. J Abnorm Child Psychol. 1989 Oct; 17(5):527-40. Pfiffner LJ, O'Leary SG. PMID: 2808945.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 4     Fields:    Translation:Humans
    49. Marital conflict, parenting, and toddler conduct problems. J Abnorm Child Psychol. 1988 Apr; 16(2):197-206. Jouriles EN, Pfiffner LJ, O'Leary SG. PMID: 3385083.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 16     Fields:    Translation:Humans
    50. The importance of prudent negative consequences for maintaining the appropriate behavior of hyperactive students. J Abnorm Child Psychol. 1984 Dec; 12(4):581-604. Rosén LA, O'Leary SG, Joyce SA, Conway G, Pfiffner LJ. PMID: 6491064.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 9     Fields:    Translation:Humans