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Psychological assessments

What is a psychological assessment?

Psychological assessment is a process that involves the gathering and integration of information in order to make a psychological evaluation, decision, or recommendation about an individual, family, or organization. Psychologists assess diverse psychiatric conditions (e.g. anxiety, depression, substance abuse, psychosis, etc.) and non-psychiatric concerns (e.g. intelligence, career interests, academic placement). Multiple all sources of information are gathered when formulating diagnostic impressions, such as clinical interviews, behavior observational methods, psychological tests (examining intellect, academic achievement, emotional functioning), physiological measurement devices. While many assessments share some core components (e.g., an intellectual battery), these evaluations will vary as they are tailored to answer the referral question at-large. It is during the initial interview when we learn about the nature of one’s concerns and then design the remaining assessment sessions in terms of what tests, if any, to administer. Following the completion of an evaluation, you will have feedback session to learn about the findings and a written report detailing the impressions and outline recommendations based upon this comprehensive evaluation that is often shared with permission to various parties such as a child study team, employer, college, etc.

Why would a psychological assessment be helpful?

Psychological testing is helpful in clarifying diagnosis, identifying intellectual strengths and weaknesses, and gaining insight into personality and coping style. Psychological testing may be recommended for various reasons. A child struggling in school might be evaluated to clarify diagnostic impressions (e.g., learning disability, ADHD, autism, etc.) in order learn about conditions that are undermining academic achievement and often, recommendations involving school placement and/or educational accommodations are generated.

In other instances, many seek a psychological assessment whether referred by a family member, physician, or employer to gain insight involving personality traits and/or maladaptive behaviors that are creating significant distress that is impairing functioning with relationships and/or professional aspirations. Based upon the clinical impressions from this comprehensive evaluation, a treatment plan is developed.