Associations Between Task Performance and Self-Report Measures of Cognitive Control: Shared Versus Distinct Abilities

Hannah R Snyder, Naomi P Friedman, Benjamin L Hankin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Despite overlapping terminology and assumptions that they tap the same constructs, executive function (EF) task performance and EF/effortful control (EC) questionnaires have been reported to be only weakly correlated. It is unclear if this reflects true lack of association or methodological limitations. The current study addresses past methodological limitations using a preregistered latent variable approach in a community youth sample (N = 291, age 13-22 years). EF task performance was assessed with a well-validated battery inhibition, shifting, and updating tasks. Self-reported EF/EC was assessed using the predominant temperament measure (Early Adolescent Temperament Questionnaire-Revised [EATQ-R]), and a self-report assessment more closely aligned with EF constructs (Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function-Self-Report [BRIEF-SR]). Bifactor models fit the BRIEF-SR, EATQ-R and EF task measures well. Self-reported EF/EC and EF task factors were only weakly correlated on average in youth, although there were some stronger associations in older youth. These results suggest that task-based measures of EF and self-report measures of EF/EC may be best viewed as complementary, but largely distinct, windows on cognitive control.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1080-1096
Number of pages17
Issue number4
Early online dateOct 21 2020
StatePublished - Jun 2021


  • adolescence
  • EATQ
  • effortful control
  • executive function
  • latent variable

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Psychology
  • Applied Psychology


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