Definitions of Executive Functions are abundant, but contain the similar themes that are apparent in the definitions below.
“Supervisory and self-regulatory functions that organize and direct cognitive activity, emotional response, and overt behavior.” (Gioia et al, 2002)
“The management system of the brain.” (T.E. Brown, 2006)
A set of multiple cognitive processes that act in a coordinated way to direct perception, emotion, cognition, and motor functions. (McCloskey, 2007)
Synthesis of definitions:
Executive functions are complex and interrelated higher level processes that direct our monitoring and management of our thoughts, emotions, and actions.
Executive Functioning in the Learning Environment: