One Size Fits All? Slow Cortical Potentials Neurofeedback: A Review

Kerstin Mayer, Sarah N. Wyckoff, Ute Strehl

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

45 Scopus citations


Objective: The intent of this manuscript was to review all published studies on slow cortical potentials (SCP) neurofeedback for the treatment of ADHD, with emphasis on neurophysiological rationale, study design, protocol, outcomes, and limitations. Method: For review, PubMed, MEDLINE, ERIC, and Google Scholar searches identified six studies and six subsequent publications. In addition to five studies focusing on children with Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (4th ed.; DSM-IV)-diagnosed ADHD, one study reports on adults. Results: SCP protocols utilize unipolar-electrode placement at Cz, randomized bidirectional signal regulation, feedback/transfer trials, and discrete feedback/rewards. Results demonstrated learning of SCP self-regulation, moderate to large within group effect sizes for core ADHD symptom reduction, and enhancement of event-related potentials/electroencephalogram components. Neurophysiological and session variables were predictive of treatment outcome, but open questions of specific and nonspecific effects remain. Study limitations and future directions are discussed. Conclusion: SCP is an efficacious and standardized neurofeedback protocol that addresses behavioral and neurophysiological deficits in ADHD.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)393-409
Number of pages17
JournalJournal of Attention Disorders
Issue number5
StatePublished - Jul 2013


  • ADHD
  • SCP
  • attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder
  • neurofeedback
  • review
  • slow cortical potentials

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Clinical Psychology


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