When someone mentions getting their kid tested for academic struggles or focus issues, it usually refers to a process of undergoing assessments to identify and diagnose potential learning difficulties or attention-related challenges.
A “comprehensive neuropsychological psychoeducational assessment” is a fancy way of describing a thorough evaluation that combines elements of neuropsychology and psychoeducation to assess a student’s cognitive functioning, emotional well-being, and academic abilities.
Think of it like a puzzle – there are many different pieces that make up your child’s development and abilities, each piece unique and important in shaping who they become and what they can achieve.
At the Center for Learning, we believe that if your student is struggling in school, we need to look at the “whole child.” It is important to uncover the underlying factors contributing to their difficulties. That enables us to provide targeted interventions and support to address not just academic challenges, but also social, emotional, and cognitive aspects of their development.
In this context, for example, symptoms of anxiety can manifest as inattention, and struggles in math can actually be vulnerabilities in working memory. A comprehensive evaluation is needed to clearly understand how your student learns, thinks, and feels.
Most students who are struggling in school cannot be fully understood by looking at a single piece of a puzzle. The Center for Learning utilizes a “multi-disciplinary” approach.
What does this mean? We combine the expertise and perspectives of neuropsychologists, educational therapists, speech pathologists, and other specialists to provide a complete and individualized picture of each student’s strengths and weaknesses across cognitive, social-emotional, and academic domains.
|We have weekly team meetings to discuss each student during the assessment process and once testing is complete.
This allows for collaborative problem-solving, and as a result, diagnoses, interventions, and support strategies that are tailored to address your child’s specific needs.
A comprehensive evaluation should look at the following areas:
Assessments such as IQ tests are conducted to understand your child’s cognitive abilities and potential areas of strength or weakness.
Various cognitive domains are evaluated, including memory (long-term, short-term, verbal, visual), attention, executive functions, language skills, and visual-spatial abilities.
This involves evaluating your child’s academic performance, including reading decoding, comprehension, and fluency; written expression, spelling, and visual-motor coordination skills; and math calculation, problem-solving, and fluency.
It helps us to identify any foundational gaps or learning disabilities.
Rating scales and personality inventories enable us to evaluate emotional well-being, social skills, and behavioral functioning, as well as personality traits and psychological factors that may influence behavior and learning.
|PARENT and TEACHER INTERVIEWS:
Input from parents and teachers is valuable to understand the child’s behavior in different settings.
C4L utilizes rating scales to gain insight into your student’s behavior and performance across home and school settings.
|EDUCATIONAL HISTORY and BACKGROUND:
A review of your child’s educational history, including any previous assessments, interventions, or special education services, as well as other family members who may have similar learning profiles.
This involves gathering information about your child’s behavior both at home and in school.
This is also helpful in identifying symptoms associated with ADHD, such as impulsivity, hyperactivity, and inattention.
By the end of testing, you should have a comprehensive and integrated understanding of your child’s strengths and challenges across cognitive, emotional, and academic domains.
You may also have diagnostic impressions related to cognitive disorders, learning disabilities, or other conditions that may affect academic performance.
Recommendations and interventions should be clear and may include recommendations for educational strategies and interventions to support your child’s learning needs, therapeutic interventions (if emotional or behavioral concerns are identified), and/or accommodations and support services that may be beneficial in an educational or workplace setting.
It’s important to note that the process may involve collaboration between educators, healthcare professionals, and psychologists.
The goal is to provide a comprehensive understanding of your child’s strengths and challenges, leading to appropriate support and intervention if needed.
In summary, a multidisciplinary assessment is essential for gaining a nuanced and comprehensive understanding of your child’s needs. It allows for a more cohesive and collaborative approach to assessment, diagnosis, and intervention, ultimately leading to more effective support and success.