The purpose of a Psycho-Educational/Neurological evaluation to is gain insight into a child or teens academic performance and to determine whether the presence of a psychological disorder or learning difference is impacting the child’s ability to learn or demonstrate learned abilities.
Typically, a psycho-educational evaluation attempts to answer a specific question, e.g. “Does my child have dyslexia?” or “My child is struggling to focus at school, could it be Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder?” The battery of tests would be chosen to answer that question; however, all evaluations have the following in common:
- A Clinical Interview with the parents, covering academic performance, behavioral issues, general health history and family history.
- An evaluation of general cognitive skills (an IQ test), with the goal of getting an overall view of a child’s strengths, weaknesses, and learning style in verbal, non-verbal, working memory, and processing speed realms.
- Academic achievement testing, which covers developing skills in reading, writing, spelling, math, fluency, etc. Achievement test results are compared with IQ findings to assess how achievement relates to the child’s overall ability (e.g. Are they performing where they should be given their IQ scores?)
- Parent feedback session to discuss results and provide recommendations to use at home.
- School feedback session to discuss results and provide recommendations.
In addition to this, the following may be added on a case by case basis:
- Specific neuro-developmental tests can be added to gain a more in depth understanding of specific areas such as attention, language, memory, processing skills, phonics skill, and executive functions.
- If the child is experiencing emotional disturbances, specific measures can be added to assess for things like anxiety, depression or other mental health concerns.
The assessment process is lengthy, so multiple appointments will be scheduled.