In many ways, psychological testing and assessment are similar to medical tests. If a patient has physical symptoms, your primary care provider may order X-rays or blood tests to understand what’s causing those symptoms. The results of the tests will inform development of a treatment plan. Similarly, psychological evaluations help to determine a diagnosis and treatment plan. Psychologists use tests and other assessment tools to measure and observe a client’s behavior for purposes of arriving at a diagnosis and guiding treatment. For example, if a child is having trouble in school, does he or she have a reading problem such as dyslexia, or an attention problem such as attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)? Perhaps the primary issue is one of difficulty with impulse control? Psychological tests and assessments allow a psychologist to understand the nature of the problemand, in turn, figure out the best way to go about addressing it.
Psychological assessment requires a considerable time investment on the part of both you and your psychologist, often extending over the course of several days or weeks. During the first session, we will discuss your current and past family and relationship history, symptoms you are experiencing, any past treatment and its outcome, along with other general background information. Over the course of several meetings, we will complete several different tasks together. When you have completed all the tasks, I will review, score and interpret the results. Occasionally, after reviewing initial assessment results I will determine that an additional test would be beneficial. In this case, we will call you to discussnext steps.