What is a neuropsychological assessment and how can it help my child?
A neuropsychological assessment is a specialized assessment completed by a neuropsychologist with advanced training when there is known or suspected brain involvement. This evaluation can be most helpful if your child or adolescent has a medical history that can impact brain function. While many of the same tests are used in both psychoeducational and neuropsychological assessments, a neuropsychological evaluation typically examines more cognitive domains to determine the effects (if any) of a medical/neurological condition on brain functioning. The focus is on understanding why a child is having problems at school or home. This is done by examining academic skills but also looking at all of the thinking and problem-solving skills needed to perform well in and outside of school.
A neuropsychology assessment is often recommended for children and adolescents with various medical conditions including:
A neurologic condition (e.g., stroke, seizure disorder, brain injury, cerebral palsy)
Medical conditions that can impact cognitive functioning (e.g., diabetes, chronic kidney problems, chronic heart and respiratory problems, treatment for brain tumors and leukemia)
Acquired disorders (e.g., pre-natal alcohol or substance exposure)
A history of prematurity
How is an assessment helpful?
A neuropsychology assessment can be helpful by documenting your child’s learning, cognitive, social, and emotional strengths and challenges to help inform school and treatment planning. It can also help provide a baseline to monitor outcome of treatment or changes in development, and provide documentation needed to obtain school services (if applicable).
What does the assessment involve?
A neuropsychology assessment typically involves a thorough interview with parents and teacher (if available), review of medical and academic records, and completion of questionnaires. We also do comprehensive objective testing of various cognitive domains. The assessment involves both direct services (interviews with parents and/or teachers, testing, feedback) and indirect services (scoring, report writing, reviewing records). The number of hours needed for each child can vary based on their work pace, but in general comprehensive neuropsychology assessments require more time than other evaluations and depend on the complexity. An estimate will be provided after a brief phone call. We prefer to do the assessment over one full day as we feel that this gives the most ecologically valid representation of a child’s school day.
Visit our Contact Page and complete the contact form and we will schedule a brief phone call to gather some more information and answer any questions. We will provide a quote and timeline for scheduling an assessment.