What is a Neuropsychological Assessment?
A neuropsychological assessment is a comprehensive evaluation of various processing skills located in the brain and expressed by behavior. These skills include sensory, memory, attention, visual-spatial, language, working memory, executive functions, and speed. During a series of appointments, the specialist gathers data from formal testing with standardized instruments (I.Q. tests, memory tests, adaptive behavior, executive functions, computerized attention, language tests, fine motor and dexterity tests, interviews, observations, rating forms, and past records.)
Our practice specializes in the assessment of individuals from ages 3 to adulthood related to potential areas of concern:
L.D.: Learning Disabilities (dyslexia, dysgraphia, dyscalculia)
ADHD: Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder
ASD: Autism Spectrum Disorder: High functioning and moderate to severe
Developmental Motor Coordination Disorder: Visual Motor Processing, Dexterity
Language Deficits: Receptive, Expressive, Pragmatic, Phonological
Executive Functioning Skills: Planning, organizing, shifting, inhibition, working memory, emotional modulation
Intellectual Disability (I.D.): Subaverage Intelligence and adaptive behavior
Neurocognitive Disorder: Traumatic Brain Injury, Seizure, Epilepsy, Brain Tumors, Diabetes, Premature Birth
Gifted and Talent
Twice Exceptional Individuals: Both intellectively gifted and have a disability
The neuropsychological evaluation synthesizes the data to explain specific referral questions such as: Why can't my child read? What causes inattentive behavior? What remediation is more appropriate for this problem? Is this the right school for us? What mental health behaviors have an impact on development?
Conclusively, the generated report provides various evidence-based interventions (validated as effective through scientific research studies).
We Speacialize in the Following Evaluations:
Independent Education Evaluations (IEE)
As part of special education rights for students, parents may request an Independent Education Evaluation (IEE) from the local school district, an assessment funded by the district by an expert external to the school district. Wiest Neuropsychology provides this service to various school districts in Orange County, Los Angeles County, and the Inland Empire. Parents can request our services from their school district, which then creates a contract with our business group. The student is evaluated at our office through a multi-day neuropsychological evaluation. This series of tests is an in-depth assessment of skills and abilities connected to brain function. The evaluation measures memory, attention, problem-solving, language, I.Q., visual-spatial skills, academic skills, and social-emotional functioning. This evaluation can help diagnose a range of learning disabilities, attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), autism spectrum disorder (ASD), and mental health challenges (depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, psychosis, etc.).
Concussion/Traumatic Brain Injury
Traumatic brain injury is a disruption of the brain's normal functioning. Injury can be caused by a blow, bump, or jolt to the head or when an object pierces the skull and enters brain tissue. Brain injuries can lead to an individual having resulting specific learning disabilities (SLDs). The severity of the injury and part of the brain affected will affect the type and seriousness of the disability.
Autism Spectrum Disorders
Autism Spectrum Disorders are a group of developmental disabilities that can cause significant social, communication, and behavioral challenges. Every individual on the autism spectrum has difficulties in one or more areas of social skills, empathy, communication, and flexible behavior. Autism spectrum disorder evaluations are tailored to determine whether you or your child has an autism spectrum disorder or another developmental condition. We specialize in a biopsychosocial approach which considers the relationship between psychological and physical factors regarding how you or your child socializes, communicates, and behaves.
Attention-Deficit / Hyperactivity Disorder
ADHD is one of the most common childhood disorders and can continue into adulthood. Common symptoms include difficulty paying attention, controlling behavior, and hyperactivity (with or without hyperactivity). It can be difficult for children with ADHD to pay attention in school, control impulses, get along with other children, or finish tasks around the home.
A learning disorder is an information processing problem that prevents an individual from learning a skill, such as reading, writing, and mathematics, and using that skill effectively in the classroom. There are three main types of learning disorders.
Reading Disorder- A reading disorder may be suspected when a child or adolescent reads below the expected level for age, grade, or intelligence. Often reading disorders are seen as slow reading, trouble with word recognition, confusion around word shape and symbols, and difficulty comprehending what they just read.
Written Expression- A disorder of written expression is often characterized by difficulty with spelling, handwriting, written composition, and understanding grammatical rules.
Mathematic Disorder- A mathematics disorder may be present if a child has number-related problems. These problems may include trouble counting, basic arithmetic, copying numbers correctly, learning multiplication tables, recognizing mathematical symbols, and understanding mathematical operations.
If you or your child are transitioning to a new school or university, and you need an assessment to determine eligibility for accommodations for testing such as SAT, GRE, LSAT, GMAT, MCAT; these evaluations are designed especially for your needs.
Testing accommodations are modifications in the testing procedure to prevent a disability from interfering with a person's ability to demonstrate their actual skill levels.
Accommodations May Include:
Changes to the test, such as multiple-choice rather than short answer or a reduced number of test items.
Changes in the administration of the tests such as extended time, having items read using a text-reader, or having someone write your child's answers as they say them aloud.