Comprehensive Evaluation Services

PSYCHOEDUCATIONAL & ACADEMIC
PSYCHOLOGICAL & BEHAVIORAL
SUBSTANCE ABUSE
FORENSIC/COURT
EATING DISORDERS & BARIATRIC SURGERY
NEUROPSYCHOLOGICAL/ EXECUTIVE FUNCTIONING
CAREER ASSESSMENT
AUTISM SPECTRUM DISORDERS

PSYCHOEDUCATIONAL/EDUCATIONAL/ACADEMIC EVALUATIONS

(Used when the question is primarily educational.)

Full Psychoeducational Evaluation: This includes an IQ and Achievement battery with AD/HD testing to assess for the possibilities of AD/HD and/or learning disabilities, combined with clinical interviewing to rule out the influence of depression, anxiety, and other mental health conditions on educational abilities and performance.  A complete history is also taken to identify any possible medical conditions that might be affecting educational abilities and performance. Collateral contacts will also be interviewed, such as teachers. A school observation of the child or school visit with teachers and/or school counselors may be helpful in some cases. Resulting report meets all NC state requirements, should report be used within educational institutions to qualify the client for any special services. If you suspect AD/HD or ‘ADD’, this evaluation is used to test for AD/HD and determine a diagnosis of Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder, all types (hyperactive, inattentive, or combined).

IQ & Achievement Battery / LD Screening / Gifted Screening: This includes an IQ test and Achievement test, which will provide in-depth information on several factors of intelligence (such as factual knowledge, short-term memory, abstract reasoning, visual-spatial abilities, and common sense), academic strengths and weaknesses, mastery of specific subjects, and the likely presence of a learning disability. Collateral contacts may also be interviewed, such as teachers. A school observation of the child or school visit with teachers and/or school counselors may be helpful in some cases.

IQ Testing onlyThis includes the Wechsler Intelligence Test IV, the standard in assessing IQ, which will provide in-depth information on several factors of intelligence (such as factual knowledge, short-term memory, abstract reasoning, visual-spatial abilities, and common sense), and on academic strengths and weaknesses. The results are also used by some educational programs as one component utilized in determining the “gifted” label. At the other end of the spectrum, the results can also identify mental retardation. **We also have the Universal Nonverbal  IQ Test, which can be used with children who do not speak English well, or are deaf or mute.**

Achievement Testing onlyThis includes the Woodcock Johnson III (WJ-III), the standard in assessing academic achievement, which will provide in-depth information on a child’s mastery of specific subjects and on academic strengths and weaknesses.

Readiness for Kindergarten: To determine readiness for early entry into Kindergarten. (click here for in-depth information on kindergarten readiness to include determining if your child is ready for early entry to kindergarten, the process in NC for early entry to kindergarten to include links to NC school district guidelines, and tips for preparing your child for kindergarten readiness testing.)

Comprehensive Assessment of Functioning (School Success Screening): A quick and affordable screening tool; in just 45-60 minutes screen for red flags and strengths in all major areas: cognitive/academic, emotional, social, and developmental.

PSYCHOLOGICAL & BEHAVIORAL EVALUATIONS

(Used when the question is primarily one of mental health.)

Full Psychological Evaluation: This includes cognitive, emotional and personality testing, and provides in-depth information on an individual’s functioning in all three of these areas. It is useful to help understand what a person is thinking and feeling, their underlying personality structure, cognitive strengths and limitations, coping skills or areas of weakness in coping, and why a person behaves as he or she does. In clinically complex cases and/or cases in which it is hard for a person to get in touch with or articulate what the problem is he or she is experiencing, a full psychological evaluation can be an invaluable resource for providing diagnostic clarification and treatment recommendations.

Abbreviated Psychological Evaluation: This includes emotional and personality testing, and provides in-depth information on an individual’s functioning in both of these areas. It is useful to help understand what a person is thinking and feeling, their underlying personality structure, coping skills or areas of weakness in coping, and why a person behaves as he or she does. If previous cognitive testing exists, or if it seems fairly certain that cognitive issues do not bear on the case, an abbreviated psychological evaluation can be an invaluable resource for providing diagnostic clarification and treatment recommendations.

MMPI only: The most widely used and widely researched test of adult and adolescent psychopathology. A self-report measure used to screen for clinical and psychosocial disorders. Questions on the MMPI are designed to evaluate the thoughts, emotions, attitudes, and behavioral traits that comprise personality. The results of the test reflect an individual’s personality strengths and weaknesses. Can be a helpful adjunct to treatment planning in therapy.

Adoption Readiness: Includes a clinical interview covering information of childhood, employment, mental health history and current functioning, substance abuse history, legal history, and understanding of adoption. Also includes administration of the MMPI-2 which is the most widely used and widely researched test of adult psychopathology. Includes a report and feedback session. (If your agency requires only a clinical interview or only a MMPI we are happy to do just that, as well as if they require a more comprehensive psychological evaluation; our battery is based on what we typically see agencies request.)

Bariatric Evaluation: Includes an in-depth clinical interview covering medical, psychological, and substance abuse history, and family dynamics and patterns of health, food, weight and exercise, as well as attitudes and behaviors concerning eating, weight and shape. Also includes the Psychodiagnostic Screening Questionnaire (PDSQ) which screens for mental health and substance abuse disorders. This information is useful to help understand what a person is thinking and feeling and coping skills or areas of weakness in coping. A follow-up interview may be required based on PDSQ results.

Other psychological testing: In some instances, a single or minimum number of tests, such as one personality test, or depression and anxiety screens, may be quite useful in clarifying the diagnosis and thus aiding in treatment planning. Many of these tests are fairly brief.

FULL BATTERY (COMBINED FULL PSYCHOED AND FULL PSYCHOLOGICAL)

(Used when there are combined concerns/possibilities of educational and mental health issues.)

Full Battery: This is the most comprehensive of testing, which combines a full psychological, a full psychoeducational, and a substance abuse evaluation. Testing can rule-out all possible cognitive/educational issues, all possible mental health concerns, and substance abuse.

AUTISM SPECTRUM EVALUATIONS

(Used when the question is primarily one of possible Autism, Aspergers’, or other Pervasive Developmental Disorder.)

Autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) are characterized by severe and pervasive impairment in several areas of development: reciprocal social interaction skills, communication skills or the presence of stereotyped behavior, interests, and activities. Symptoms of ASDs in children can sometimes be difficult to recognize. All children need support to reach their potential. The first step in determining how best to help a child who is experiencing difficulties with communication, social interaction, or flexibility in responding to the world is to complete a comprehensive assessment and evaluation. Parents often report feeling relieved once a comprehensive assessment has been completed because they “finally understand” why their child has had difficulties in school, at home, or in the community. Parents will also have a better understanding of the next steps that they can take to help their child.

Autism evaluations are clinically complex and should be conducted by individuals who have significant experience providing this kind of evaluation. Evaluations for autism spectrum are comprehensive and tailored to the unique needs of each child, but generally contain the following procedures. A thorough review of the child’s developmental history, including a review of early social behaviors, communication development, and behavior. Input from parents, teachers, and/or relevant individuals provide context to understand how the child’s behaviors are manifested cross contexts. Observations of the child in both the evaluation setting and in naturalistic settings in the community, such as at school, and/or informal play settings with peers. Standardized measures such as cognitive assessment tools, behavioral rating systems, and autism-specific tests to include the Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule (ADOS) are used to evaluate developmental, cognitive, and behavioral functioning.

NEUROPSYCHOLOGICAL EXECUTIVE FUNCTIONING EVALUATIONS

(Used when the question is primarily one of executive functioning.)

Full Neuropsychological Executive Functioning Battery: Includes all components of a full psychoeducational evaluation (i.e., IQ and achievement testing plus clinical interview and BASC) to assess for the possibilities of AD/HD and/or learning disabilities, as well as any mental health conditions that may impact educational and cognitive abilities and performance. Executive functioning tests used are the Delis Kaplan and the BRIEF. A complete history is also taken to identify any possible medical conditions that might be affecting educational abilities/performance. Report meets all NC state requirements, should report be used within educational institutions to qualify the client for any special services. Executive functioning refers to higher order cognitive abilities. For many individuals who do not meet criteria for a learning disorder and/or AD/HD but still struggle with issues such as disorganization, forgetfulness, cognitive rigidity, etc., it is possible that he or she may have undiagnosed executive functioning deficits. Other areas covered by executive function testing include cognitive and behavioral inhibition and flexibility (the ability to shift, start and stop thoughts and behaviors), and emotional control and self monitoring (the ability to regulate one’s emotional, behavioral, and cognitive responses effectively).

Abbreviated Neuropsychological Executive Functioning Battery: Provides information regarding higher order cognitive abilities. This includes understanding goal directed behaviors, cognitive and behavioral inhibition, emotional control, planning and organization, and initiation, and self monitoring. Data is collected directly from face to face interactions with the test examiner along with self report, parent report, and/or teacher reports regarding the individual’s current executive functioning. This assessment is particularly helpful for individuals who have already undergone psychoeducational testing which yielded inconclusive results. For many individuals who do not meet criteria for a learning disorder and/or AD/HD but still struggle with issues such as disorganization, forgetfulness, cognitive rigidity, cognitive and behavioral inhibition and flexibility, and emotional control and self monitoring, it is possible that he or she may have undiagnosed executive function deficits.

SUBSTANCE ABUSE EVALUATIONS

(Used when the question is primarily one of substance abuse.)

Juvenile Substance Abuse Evaluation: Clinical interview, SCID, and parent interview to determine or rule out any substance-related diagnosis and risk for future use. Gives clarity about whether substances are part of the child’s difficulties, and recommendations for level of treatment necessary to address any substance abuse. For families in crisis when they get to the point of requesting this, can be done in one session (~ 2½ hours) with focus on providing verbal guidance regarding treatment needs at the end of session. Can also include review of past records or more lengthy report if required by court or school.

Adult Substance Abuse Evaluation: Clinical interview and SCID to determine or rule out any substance-related diagnosis, risk for future use, and give treatment recommendations. Can be used by individuals to gain clarity on their substance abuse, or can be used if a substance abuse evaluation has been court-ordered or is being required by your employer or school. Results in verbal recommendations as well as any letter/report of results needed. Can also include review of past records or more lengthy report if required by court, employer or school.

EATING DISORDER EVALUATIONS

(Used when the question is primarily one of eating issues.)

Comprehensive Eating Disorder Assessment: Includes an in-depth clinical interview covering medical, psychological, and substance abuse history, as well as family dynamics and patterns of health, food, weight and exercise. Also involves specific eating disorder and body image testing, which provides information about eating disorder risk, interpersonal problems, emotion regulation, ineffectiveness, dissociation, as well as attitudes and behaviors concerning eating, weight and shape. Emotional and personality testing is completed and provides in-depth information on an individual’s functioning in both of these areas, and is useful to help understand what a person is thinking and feeling, their underlying personality structure, and coping skills or areas of weakness in coping. A comprehensive eating disorder assessment is essential for a full understanding of the problem, severity, and psychological and medical complications a person with disordered eating may experience. (May include: Eating Disorder and Substance Abuse Clinical Interview, MMPI, EDI-3, EAT-26, and/or AUDIT.)

Eating Disorder and Substance Abuse Assessment: Provides in-depth information regarding disordered attitudes and behaviors regarding food as well as history and current use of substances. Includes an in-depth clinical interview covering medical, psychological, and substance abuse history, as well as family dynamics and patterns of health, food, weight and exercise. Also involves specific eating disorder and body image testing, which provides information about eating disorder risk, interpersonal problems, emotion regulation, ineffectiveness, dissociation, as well as attitudes and behaviors concerning eating, weight and shape. Includes specific substance use testing which provides diagnostic information about substance abuse. This assessment is very helpful when an individual is struggling with both areas and would like a more complete picture of his or her patterns of behavior and recommendations for treatment. (May include: Eating Disorder and Substance Abuse Clinical Interview, EDI-3, EAT-26, and/or AUDIT.)

Brief Eating Disorder Assessment: Includes an in-depth clinical interview covering medical and psychological history, as well as family dynamics and patterns of health, food, weight and exercise. Also involves specific eating disorder and body image testing, which provides information about eating disorder risk, interpersonal problems, emotion regulation, ineffectiveness, dissociation, as well as attitudes and behaviors concerning eating, weight and shape. (May include: Eating Disorder Clinical Interview, EDI-3, and/or EAT-26.)

Eating Disorder Risk Assessment: An eating disorder risk assessment is a helpful tool in determining if an individual is at risk for an eating disorder, and what dynamics may contribute to the development or prevention of a disorder. It also involves specific eating disorder and body image testing, which provides information about eating disorder risk, interpersonal problems, emotion regulation, ineffectiveness, as well as attitudes and behaviors concerning eating, weight and shape. Includes an in-depth clinical interview covering medical and psychological history, as well as family dynamics and patterns of health, food, weight and exercise. (May include: Eating Disorder Clinical Interview and/or EAT-26.)

CAREER ASSESSMENTS

(Used when the question is primarily one of career planning/change concerns.)

Several of our clinical psychologists are experiencing career counselors. Please click the link for in-depth information on our CAREER ASSESSMENT SERVICES.

FORENSIC EVALUATIONS

(Used when the question is primarily one of court matters.)

We are a comprehensive forensic testing facility offering the full range of evaluations used in domestic, civil and criminal cases. Several of our clinical psychologists are also forensic psychologists who have been qualified as expert witnesses in court. Please click the link for in-depth information on our FORENSIC EVALUATION SERVICES.