The Assessment Process
What does an assessment involve?
A detailed neuropsychological assessment may take several hours and be conducted over a number of sessions. Skills assessed would generally include general intellectual ability, attention and concentration, learning and memory, verbal skills, and non-verbal problem solving. For school-aged children and adolescents, or young adults involved in post-school studies, assessment also generally covers literacy and numeracy skills.
Neuropsychological assessments involve a clinical interview with the client and a parent, following by a range of individually administered tests. The assessment is generally conducted in our rooms. Preschool children may need a parent to stay with them in the assessment room, school aged children and adolescents are generally seen on their own.
Generally the assessment would include:
- The completion of questionnaires by the parents and the child’s teacher prior to the first appointment
- A detailed parent interview including the child’s developmental and medical history, previous and current concerns, and any prior assessment results and reports
- Approximately three hours of assessment with the child and clinician, separated into a number of sessions
- A parent feedback session where the results of the assessment are discussed with the parents (and students 16 years and older), and copies of the reports are given to the parents
How will I get the results?
After the assessment is completed, a report will be prepared highlighting the client’s strengths and weaknesses and making recommendations to assist them. At this time a parent feedback session is arranged to discuss the report and findings. For younger children, this session is generally held just with their parents, but for older adolescents it may be appropriate for them to be involved.
What happens then?
Depending on the needs of the client, the results of the assessment may be used to develop an individual treatment plan. Alternatively, meetings may be held with a child’s school, for example, to discuss how best to meet that child’s needs.
As children continue to learn and develop over time, the nature of any difficulties they have may also change. It may therefore be appropriate for children to be reviewed after one or two years to reassess their current strengths and weaknesses.
How do I make an appointment?
No medical referral is required for a neuropsychological assessment, although many children are referred by general practitioners or paediatricians. Referrals are also accepted from schools and other allied health practitioners.