HOW CAN PSYCHOLOGICAL TESTING HELP MY CHILD?
Psychological assessment is often helpful in understanding the strengths and challenges a child may have in their cognitive, behavioral, and emotional functioning. The psychological assessment process allows for diagnostic clarity and individualized recommendations. Often children who are struggling with academic work, social interactions, and emotion regulation have atypical neurological development that can be identified through psychological assessment. This allows for parents, teachers, and therapists to provide intervention and accommodations needed to allow each child to reach their potential. Your child’s school, pediatrician, or mental health provider may refer you, but a professional referral is not necessary for testing.
How to prepare for testing days:
At the initial intake it is helpful if you bring any previous assessments that have been completed by other professionals, such as Speech Language Pathologist, Occupational Therapist, Optometrist or from the school if your child has an IEP or 504 plan. Your honesty, best effort, and insight about yours or your child’s experience are invaluable during the intake. You can assist the process by outlining specific concerns prior to coming to the intake session.
After the intake, the assessment process will require that I begin testing one-on-one. To help testing run more smoothly, make sure you or your child gets plenty of rest the night before, eat a meal with protein before coming to testing, and takes any medications as prescribed, unless otherwise discussed during the intake process. While we do have snacks and drinks available, feel free to bring any healthy snacks you think you or your child may desire.
The testing process can be anxiety provoking. Therefore, we take great care to provide our clients with a comfortable environment and incorporate breaks into the testing process. This can include playing a short game, take a quick walk, or eat a snack to avoid fatigue.
What happens after testing?
After testing concludes, I will write an integrative report and schedule a feedback session with you in a timely manner. During this session, we will review the full written report and are welcomed to invite any desired family members. I will review the results of the assessment with you including identifying strengths and areas of challenge. I will offer recommendations for you and your family to incorporate for future success. I am also willing to discuss these results with educators and other health providers upon your written consent.
How do I explain testing to my child?
Preparing your child for testing will minimize anxiety and encourage cooperation. Your child may wonder why s/he are having these “tests” and is there something “wrong” with him or her. We want your child to be as comfortable, motivated and relaxed as possible on the day of testing. Here are some helpful ways to prepare your child:
- Try to avoid using the word “test” as this tends to provoke anxiety in school-aged children.
- Listen to your child’s concerns, and be as open and honest about the assessment process as possible.
- Explain to your child that s/he will be meeting with a psychologist alone.
- Reassure your child that the testing will help you to understand what they are experiencing and that testing is not unusual—other children participate in testing too.
- Explain that children learn in different ways and that testing will help parents and teachers understand how s/he learns best.
Your evaluating psychologist can address any additional concerns you or your child may have about the assessment process.
What is testing?
Mindful Therapy Group is offering psychological assessment services for children ages 6-16 years in Mountlake Terrace, ages 2.5 through adults in our Northgate location, and ages 13 through adult in our Southcenter location. Depending on the presenting concerns, the psychological assessment may include several domains including cognitive, academic, neurodevelopmental and social-emotional. Testing activities can include a variety of questions, puzzles, drawings, and stories as well as some school-like tasks like reading, writing and math. While you or your child will be challenged, you or she/he will probably have fun with some of the tasks.
The psychological assessment process includes completing an initial intake (with parents where applicable) in order to gather pertinent historical and familial information. You are the expert on your child and the information you provide is equally important to the testing process. Following the intake, a testing day will be scheduled. Depending on the referral question, testing can consist of anywhere from 2 to 10 hours of direct interaction. Testing may be completed in one day or across several testing sessions to attend to the needs of the individual. After testing is completed, a feedback session will be scheduled in a timely manner.
How much will testing cost?
Psychological testing involves administration, scoring, and interpretation of tests; it also requires the psychologist to prepare a written report and meet with parents to review the results. The cost for a full assessment is determined by the total number of hours required by the psychologist(s) to complete the full evaluation process from testing time with your child to results review session with you, at the rate of $180/hour. The cost of testing varies depending on the battery of tests required and will be determined during your intake evaluation.
If paying out-of-network or privately, a partial payment or full payment may be required on the day of testing depending on your provider, with the balance due at your results review appointment. If we will be billing your insurance, the "patient portion" (copay, coinsurance or an applicable deductible) will be due at the start of your appointments. Currently we are billing for Premera/ Lifewise, Regence, and First Choice Network plans only for these services. If your plan is not one of these, you will pay the full cost of the assessment, then submit the required information to your plan for reimbursement to you.
Payment can be made by cash, check, Health Savings Account, or credit card.
When you call them, ask the following:
- Is the cost of psychological testing covered?
- Is there a deductible?
- What portion will be reimbursed?
- Is a referral needed from a primary care physician?
- Is pre-authorization required?
If being seen out of network, and your insurance company requests a list of the tests being administered, we can provide that for you. You will receive a coded billing statement at your follow-up appointment which you may file with your insurance company for reimbursement.
Is the cost covered by insurance?
Many insurance companies do cover psychological testing. Although we will verify benefits during your intake evaluation, it is your responsibility to contact your insurance company to determine benefits before getting started.
List of Services Provided:
We provide a comprehensive range of assessments for children ages 2.5-adults for the following potential diagnoses:
- Learning disabilities in the areas of reading, writing, and mathematics
- School readiness
- Autism Spectrum
- Intellectual disabilities
- Behavioral Disorders including Oppositional Defiance and Conduct Disorders
- Nonverbal learning disabilities
- Motor impairments
- Weaknesses in executive functioning
- Weaknesses in memory and learning
- Developmental delays and early intervention
- Personality Disorders
- Thought Disorders
List of Assessments:
- Behavior Assessment System for Children-II (BASC-II)
- Conners 3
- Developmental Neuropsychological Assessment-II(NEPSY-II)
- House-Tree-Person (H-T-P)
- Integrated Visual and Auditory Assessment for ADHD (IVA-Plus)
- Scales of Independent Behavior- Revised (SIB-R)
- Incomplete Sentence Blank
- Peabody Picture Vocabulary Test (PPVT-4)
- Kinetic Family Drawing (KFD)
- Rorschach Inkblot Test
- Wechsler Individual Achievement Test-III (WIAT-III)
- Weschler Adult Intelligence Scale (WAIS-IV)
- Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children-IV (WISC-IV)
- Autism Spectrum Rating Scale (ASRS)
- Wechsler Preschool and Primary Scale of Intelligence-IV (WPPSI-IV)
- Autism Diagnostic Observation Scheduled-II (ADOS-II)
Psychological Testing Providers
Psychological Testing services are offered at all three locations!