It is often the case that the first step in working with a patient is to develop a better understanding of the nature and extent of the challenges he or she faces. This includes at the very least an interview with parents as well as the child/adolescent. It is also common that additional information is obtained through the completion of behavioral rating scales by parents as well as school personnel or others who know the child well. Following the completion of this information gathering, a meeting is held with parents to discuss the findings, the appropriate diagnosis and the indicated treatment plan.
Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity & Executive Functioning Assessment
A common concern for a number of the children/adolescents referred to our practice is the presence of attention difficulties. It is important to understand that the presence of difficulties with paying attention can be the result of a number of factors in isolation or in combination with one another. The specialized assessment for these conditions include the completion of a diagnostic interview with parents; behavioral rating scales considering attention, activity level, academic skills, executive functioning, emotional and social functioning completed by parents and the school; a diagnostic interview and formal cognitive assessment with the child/adolescent.
Neuropsychological Assessment of Learning Problems
There are times when there are specific concerns with the child/adolescent's ability to make progress in school. When this is the case a more extensive assessment battery is completed including a diagnostic interview with parents, the completion of behavior rating scales by parents and school personnel, and formal intellectual, academic achievement and cognitive processing assessment with the student. The purpose of this evaluation is to better understand both the current level of functioning and the pattern of cognitive processing skills. This leads to recommendations to the parents and school regarding the best way to understand and intervene on behalf of the student.
Autistic Spectrum Disorder Assessment
Children and adolescents who are being considered for the presence of an autistic spectrum disorder present with a number of possible factors which contribute to the challenges they face. Diagnostic assessment considers several dimensions of development and behavior which are typically involved. Assessment is completed through diagnostic interview, rating scale data as well as formal assessment of indicated areas of concern. There are also some occasions when an observation in the school setting is recommended. The assessment considers six dimensions of development including sensory processing/reactivity, motor skill development, reciprocal social interaction skills, cognitive functioning, emotional regulation and attention and executive functioning skills.