- Developmental Disabilities Evaluation
- Giftedness Evaluation
- Cognitive Evaluation
- Attention Deficit/Hyper Active Disorder Evaluation
- Asperger’s/Autism spectrum disorders
- Assessment of Learning Disabilities
- Memory Evaluations
- Social/Emotional dysfunction
- Psycho-educational Evaluations
- School/Parent Consultation
Intellectual assessments identify areas of cognitive strengths and weaknesses. These areas may include verbal and language functioning, visual-spatial functioning, numerical reasoning, attention, concentration, and memory functioning. Depending on the referral question, assessment may include other measures to identify learning disability, giftedness, mood or anxiety issues that may hinder educational success.
Cognitive/intellectual testing primarily involves the use of pencil and paper tasks to assess a wide range of abilities, including attention, memory, problem solving, language skills and overall intellectual functioning. The assessment process determines a student’s cognitive strengths and weaknesses through qualitative (approach to tasks and observed behavior) and quantitative (standardized and scaled measures) approaches. Test scores are interpreted on the basis of normative data and expected level of performance for a given individual based upon their educational/occupational level and, for those with illnesses or injuries, estimates of their pre-morbid intellectual functioning.
Test results can be used to offer recommendations for educational accommodations and/or additional psychological or neuropsychological treatment to compensate for weaknesses and/or to develop strengths. The results help to identify what target problems and strengths to work on or enhance and which strategies to use. An appropriate diagnosis can result in school accommodations, like IEP or 504 plans, specialized tutors, or extended test taking time, as stipulated by the Americans with Disabilities Act and the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act.
Educational experts have begun to use neuropsychology to explain why some children have trouble acquiring language skills, learning to read, developing arithmetic reasoning skills, and so on. Using neuropsychological evaluations in schools can help teachers serve children with learning disabilities more effectively because a child who has neurologically related disabilities does not benefit from the same teaching techniques (such as repetition) that a student who merely learns at a slower rate benefits from.
Most Common Reasons for Testing
- Learning Difficulties/ Learning Disabilities
- Developmental delays
- Giftedness Determination
- Difficulty deciding career path (Vocational Testing)
- Initial/Re-evaluation for Section 504 Plan/Individual Education Plan Eligibility
- Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder ADHD/ ADD Testing
- Autism Spectrum Disorders (ex. Aspergers Syndrome)
- Social & Emotional Difficulties (e.g., depression, anxiety)
Reasons for Gifted Testing
- To provide details about learning needs, including strengths and weaknesses
- To help identify a child for a gifted program
- To discover any learning disabilities requiring intervention
- To help advocate for appropriate educational accommodations
- General intellect
- Higher level executive skills (e.g., sequencing, reasoning, problem solving)
- Attention and concentration
- Learning and memory
- Visual–spatial skills (e.g., perception)
- Motor and sensory skills
- Vocational/Decision Making
- Mood and personality
What is an Assessment Battery?
An assessment battery is a collection of cognitive and/or psychological tests selected and tailored to the unique needs of the presenting individual. The selection and interpretation of these batteries are determined the psychometrist/psychologist.
There are five main areas of functioning addressed by the cognitive assessments:
- Intellectual Functioning
- Executive Functioning
- Attention/Concentration, Working Memory, and Speed of Processing
- Learning and Memory
- Short-term and long-term
- Auditory and visual
- Recall and recognition
- Self-Reported Cognition and Emotional Functioning
What is an Assessment Battery?
Testing is usually undertaken over two half-days (approximately 2.5-3.0 hours each in duration) and each client meets the diagnostician prior to commencement of testing to complete an interview, review the testing process, and have their concerns or questions directly addressed. One to two weeks following completion of their assessment, most clients or families can expect to again meet with the diagnostician to receive feedback, including a written report, and recommendations relating to the results of their assessment. Again, they will have an opportunity to have their concerns or questions addressed and family members should attend this appointment with them.