In many ways, psychological testing and assessment are similar to medical tests. If a patient has physical symptoms, a primary care provider may order X-rays or blood tests to understand what’s causing those symptoms. The results of the tests will help inform diagnosis and treatment planning. Psychological evaluations serve the same purpose. Psychologists use tests and other assessment tools to measure and observe a client’s behavior to arrive at a diagnosis and guide treatment.
The underlying cause of a person’s problems isn’t always clear. Testing can help answer questions about why a person may be having difficulty. If a child is having trouble in school, an evaluation can answer questions such as, does he or she have a reading problem such as dyslexia, an attention problem as in attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, or a social/emotional problem.
For an adult having problems at work, school, or in personal relationships, tests can help a psychologist understand whether he or she might have issues with anger management, interpersonal skills, or certain personality traits that contribute to the problem. Additionally, testing for adults can determine if attentional issues such as attention deficit hyperactivity disorder is present. For adults that have said they have always struggled in school, psychological tests can determine if the person has a learning issue that was never diagnosed and treated during their school years. We take a detailed, meticulous approach to the testing process. We do not have a “one size fits all” battery of tests. We tailor the test battery to fit a particular client’s concerns and questions. Each report has a detailed narrative of findings and accompanying recommendations that we carefully review with the client present.