What is a Psychoeducational Assessment?
Psychoeducational assessments provide estimates of the child’s intellectual or cognitive abilities and educational achievement levels. It also yields recommendations relevant for educational planning. Sources of assessment data include background information, educational history, and records and data from tests of intelligence and educational achievement and, at times, ratings tests of attention, behavior/emotions, and adaptive behavior.
Psychoeducational assessment is designed to answer these questions:
Does the child have a learning disability(ies)?
An Intellectual Disability? Developmental Delay?
Attentional problems? Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder?
What are the child’s academic and cognitive abilities, strengths, and weaknesses?
What is the best way your child/teen learns? Is she/he a visual learner or auditory learner?
What are appropriate educational recommendations? How can the school help your child?
While learning, not emotional problems is the focus of psychoeducational assessment, behavior/emotional and medical issues may need to be addressed in psychoeducational assessment. Compiling, integrating, and analyzing all assessment data yield educational and other relevant recommendations.
Though the formats of psychoeducational reports vary, most assessments include certain basic components. A psychoeducational report is a type of psychological report that focuses on assessment and interpretation of educationally related psychological tests and educational tests, including tests of intelligence and cognitive abilities, achievement tests, and tests of behavior and attention.
What happens when you book for a psychoeducational assessment ?
The initial session is for the parent(s) only. It is an opportunity for you to discuss your child’s strengths and challenges freely, and to outline your concerns. Please bring any previous assessments, relevant report cards and any other information that may be helpful for me to best understand your child. You will be asked about your child’s developmental history, temperament and interests/passions. During this appointment you and I, will make a plan for organizing the assessment to best suit your child.
Length of Session: 1.5 hours
Depending on your child’s needs, this portion of the assessment may be quite straightforward or slightly more involved. Likely the assessment will involve at least two separate appointments with your child (approximately 3 hours each) and possibly a few more. You and I, will also decide whether a school observation/ consultation would be beneficial. It is best to book the testing sessions during school hours so that your child is not too tired from a full day of school. Please also bring a snack and any other items that would create comfort and support focus.
Length of Session: 3 hours
This session is also intended for parent(s) only. If your child is of an age where it feels appropriate for him or her to also receive feedback about the assessment, please book a separate appointment. During this session, I and my colleague who is a registered psychologist will explain the results of the assessment and support you to make a plan to go forward. This will include specific recommendations for you and your child. Our philosophy is to approach the process of assessment from a holistic perspective and to avoid being diagnosis driven. Occasionally, a diagnosis is a helpful framework from which to better understand a child.
Types of Assessments that we can do:
- Profile on a young child’s development in the areas of communication skills, motor skills, social skills, and academic readiness
- Identifies areas where therapies may be useful to enhance develpoment
- Identifies delays and strengths
The purpose of gifted testing is to identify students with exceptional level of intelligence. Students who meet the criteria of the Gifted exceptionality may be formally identified through the Identification Placement and Review Committee (IPRC) process, as an exceptional student. These students may then qualify for placement in a Gifted Program.
Under my supervised practice, I would conduct such assessments. I would meet with your child to administer the cognitive and/or academic tests that your particular school board requires. Shortly after testing I will provide you with a brief report containing all the necessary information you will need to bring to your child’s school principal. If you are concerned that your child seems very bright but is academically delayed, a more comprehensive assessment may be required to determine the root cause of these delays. For more information please see my section on psychoeducational assessment.