Eastwood Psychologists

Psychological Assessment

What is a psychological assessment?

A psychological assessment provides an in depth understanding of a person’s cognitive, social, and/or emotional difficulties, and helps lay the groundwork for a plan to improve those difficulties. In some cases, an assessment will result in a diagnosis of a learning, attention, mental health or developmental disorder. At your request, the results of an assessment can be shared with a doctor, school or insurance company.

Psychological assessments can be conducted at any age, although the nature of the questions asked, and the answers obtained, depends on the client’s age and the nature of their difficulties.

Parents often ask for a psychological assessment to better understand why their child is struggling. Parents also want help in deciding on the next step in treatment or educational intervention. Parents may wonder if their child has a developmental, learning, attention, or psychiatric disorder. They understand that the correct diagnosis, combined with in depth information about a child’s particular strengths and needs, leads to a better treatment plan. Last, parents hope that the assessment results will help schools respond better to their child’s needs.

What will a psychological assessment be like?

The assessment process involves being interviewed by the psychologist, completing questionnaires, and completing psychological tests that are administered by the psychologist. Your psychologist will select the tests that are needed to address your concerns and to answer your specific questions. Test scores are compared to those from a large group of other people (the standardization sample). Comparing to the standardization sample allows your psychologist to judge how the results compare to others of the same age. The psychologist will also want to carefully review any relevant historical information you may have in your possession, such as past assessment reports and even kindergarten report cards!

The referred client will attend 3-6 appointments; the number of appointments will vary depending on the client’s age and needs. Assessments of young children involve greater involvement from parents (e.g., interviews, completing questionnaires). In the case of child assessment, your psychologist will request to interview your child’s teacher, and may also need to observe your child in a natural setting (e.g., at school or daycare).

Following the formal assessment period (i.e., interviews, observations, questionnaires, & testing), your psychologist will study all the information, and will get a picture of the situation. This picture is called the clinical formulation, or the explanation of the client’s difficulties. Clinical formulations are based on psychological theory and research, they offer an opinion about the cause and nature of the difficulties and they lead to specific treatment recommendations. The psychologist will meet with you to go over the results and recommendations. You will also receive a written report summarizing all of the information.

What does psychological assessment cost?

Our current fee for psychological assessment is $225 per hour. The total cost of the assessment depends on the number of hours required – you will be given a detailed appointment and fee schedule before getting started.