If you or a loved one has been referred for psychological assessment, you may be wondering what to expect. Psychological assessment may be a helpful step in understanding the mental health problems you are experiencing and creating an individualized treatment plan for you.
What Is Psychological Testing?
Psychological testing is a lot like other medical testing. For example, when your doctor suspects you might be sick, he or she might order laboratory tests to arrive at an accurate diagnosis. Psychological testing follows the same principle, except it is used to better understand your psychological functioning. Psychological testing can be useful to arrive at an accurate diagnosis of mental health problems that may be interfering with your everyday functioning.
Who Might Benefit from Psychological Testing
Psychological testing is used in a wide variety of settings to better understand clients’ strengths and weaknesses. Some examples in which psychological assessment may be useful include:
- Your child is having difficulty learning to read. Psychological testing may help to identify whether the problem is related to a learning disorder, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), or some other issue.
- You experienced a concussion and worry that your thinking abilities have changed.
- You’re having difficulty getting along with others at work and want to understand how your personality characteristics or mental health difficulties might be interfering.
- You just went off to college and have been failing coursework for the first time in your life. Psychological testing may help you understand why as well as how to compensate for any areas of weakness.
- You have been in therapy for several months but are not experiencing much benefit. You and your therapist want to understand what factors might be getting in the way of your treatment.
What to Expect from Psychological Assessment
Psychological testing may involve several components. Our Psychological Testing service will review the reason that you were referred and structure our assessment accordingly. Typically, this will include:
We will meet with you to understand the nature of your difficulties and current level of functioning. In some cases, getting additional information from a close family member can help us better understand what is going on.
This might include standardized, paper-and-pencil style tests that assess your thinking abilities. Alternatively, you may be asked to answer questions about your current emotional state or your personality characteristics.
Analysis and Case Conceptualization
We will work to synthesize the results of the evaluation. In some cases, we may compare your pattern of performance on tests to other people of your same age and educational background. We then formulate a detailed report explaining the results of the assessment. We will explain the results of testing to you in a feedback session to ensure your understanding of the assessment.
Recommendations and Treatment Planning
Ultimately, the goal of psychological testing is to develop recommendations that will help to improve your quality of life or resume your previous level of functioning. We view recommendations and treatment planning as a core part of our psychological testing service. We often consult as a team to develop a plan that addresses your needs. This might include referrals for a medication consultation, therapy, outside medical work-up, an individualized education program at school, in-home services, assistance from a social worker, or other related assistance.
Psychological testing is confidential, non-invasive, and an important part of obtaining an accurate diagnosis. We work with our clients to help them understand the purpose of the evaluation and how we can help. Our Psychological Testing Service includes English- and Spanish-speaking Psychologists. Please contact us today to learn more about our services.