Assessments
Resources

Assessment

Purpose

I provide psychological and psychoeducational assessments that can be used for a variety of purposes. Some of the most common include:

Types of Assessment

Below are some common types of assessments that I use in my practice. This information can help you better understand how assessments may be useful for you or your child.

Developmental Assessments

The primary purpose of these assessments is to determine a child's or adolescent's current level of developmental functioning. This can be helpful in determining if a child has any developmental delays that should be addressed, or if he/she has advanced skills that need to be cultivated in different ways. Developmental assessments are also used as part of a more comprehensive assessment to detect developmental disorders such as Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder, Autism Spectrum Disorders, and Learning Disorders. Insurance will often pay for all or part of these assessments.

Behavioral and Social/Emotional Assessments

These are commonly used when there are observed or reported symptoms of social/emotional distress. They can be used to help provide diagnostic clarity and understanding around the reported symptoms. For example, hyperactivity in children can be a symptom or reaction to many things. It can be a symptom of ADHD, depression, anxiety, trauma, or sensory processing deficits. It could also be due to developmental delays or a mismatch between the child's needs and the environment. It could also be a temporary reaction to minor transitions. Behavioral and social/emotional assessments can help to determine the etiology and cause of troublesome behaviors or feelings, which leads to greater success in treating them. Insurance will often pay for all or part of these assessments if they are used for diagnostic purposes.

Educational Assessments

These can be used to determine an individual's current level of academic or pre-academic functioning. They are part of a more comprehensive assessment in detecting learning disorders and/or giftedness. Educational assessments can also be used to help make decisions about school readiness and educational placements. They can be used to highlight learning strengths and weaknesses, and to determine what instructional methods will work best for you or your child. Data from these assessments can be used to help structure educational recommendations that can help you or your child to thrive in the classroom. It should be noted that insurance will generally not pay for educational assessments as they are not considered health related.

Personality Assessments

These are generally used for adolescents and adults to understand more about personality structures. They can be helpful when an individual is experiencing more pervasive and underlying distress that cannot be traced back to one particular symptom. Personality assessments help to delineate an individual's coping resources, cognitions, and approaches to relating to others. They provide valuable information in underlying personality strengths and weaknesses that can help to develop effective interventions when a person is not feeling as though they are living up to their potential, or if they are experiencing difficulties in healthy functioning. Insurance will sometimes pay for these assessments if a case can be made that they are necessary for diagnostic clarity and understanding health-related issues.

Therapeutic Assessments

I use therapeutic assessments when individuals have more global questions about their strengths and weaknesses and are curious about how they could be happier and healthier. These are collaborative assessments that are used to answer questions about difficulties that are common to many people, and that are not necessarily related to a particular diagnosis, such as "Why do I feel insecure in romantic relationships" or "Why is my child so shy?" Therapeutic assessment combines many of the tests and assessments listed above but the goal is to provide a more person-centered and health-centered approach rather than focusing on a diagnosis. Because the focus is not on determining diagnoses, insurance generally will not pay for these types of assessments.

Screenings

Screenings are used when deficits or difficulties are suspected but an individual or parent does not want to commit the time or expense to a more comprehensive assessment. Screening instruments are less time consuming but generally produce broader, less detailed information about a client's functioning. They are often used when doctors, clinicians, or individuals observe subclinical symptoms and want to determine if further testing is warranted.

My Approach

When clients come to my practice, I tailor the assessments to meet their specific goals and needs, and may integrate all or parts of the types of assessments listed above in order to answer their questions and to work with their financial resources. All assessments include a comprehensive report of the findings along with recommendations for treatment or personal growth. For younger children, I will cater feedback in a story or some other modality that is therapeutic and fits their developmental needs.

Financial Information

Each assessment begins with an intake where I clarify goals and gather important background and collateral information. During that time, I will also discuss how long the assessment should take and establish a fee.

Please note that insurance companies reimburse for some types of testing and not others. If you want to use insurance, we can discuss the process and reimbursement expectations during an initial free 30-minute phone consultation prior to making the appointment.