Psychological and Educational Assessments

Perhaps one of the biggest challenges faced by parents and teachers is how best to help children who present with developmental, learning and/or behavioural difficulties. Obtaining a profile of a child’s developmental, learning and behavioural strengths and weaknesses as well as an assessment of their emotional functioning is central to understand the best way for parents teachers and other professionals to help the child. An assessment from a Psychologist will look at all areas  of an individual’s functioning including; Cognitive (IQ), Language, Academic, Social/Emotional and Self Help.

Developmental Assessment

A developmental assessment is usually carried out on children between the age of 18 months and 3 to 4 years. The assessment consists of interviews and observations as well as a standardised set of questions, procedures and methods. The results can then be put together to help parents, teachers and other professionals understand how a child compares to a population of children who are developing normally. This “Snapshot” of objectively measured skills points to developmental areas that may need intervention. In addition to standardised methods, a developmental assessment also takes into account all aspects of a young child’s self help, emotional, cognitive, language and social abilities within the context of his/her primary relationships.

Psychological/Educational Assessment

Some children or adolescents experience difficulties such as, not being able to read and write at age expected levels or difficulty concentrating, paying attention and completing work in school. Other difficulties may include difficulty developing appropriate language and social skills or other emotional/ behavioural difficulties such as excessive fears or worrying, depression, arguing with parents or teachers and/or aggressive behaviour toward peers and adults. If the above mentioned difficulties are causing significant difficulty to the child’s functioning within the family, at school or in the community, a comprehensive psychological/educational evaluation may be necessary.

A comprehensive psychological evaluation includes the following:

  • Tests of intelligence, language and academic ability.
  • Collection of observational data as well as interviews with the child’s teacher to incorporate into assessment findings.
  • A detailed clinical interview with parents to collect information on developmental, medical, behavioural and family history.
  • An assessment  of the child or adolescent’s social / emotional functioning.
  • The development of individualized recommendations for each child and adolescent based on information gathered during the assessment and the diagnostic impressions.
  • All of the above are combined in a written report that is communicated to parents and to the child’s teacher or school (with parents permission).