Goal: Develop an understanding of your child’s strengths and weaknesses, and provide strategies to support them.
Psychoeducational assessments provide information about how a child/adolescent learns. Psychologists use standardized assessment tools to explore the youth’s academic and cognitive abilities, as well as other areas related to academic success. They also complete interviews and/or questionnaires with parents, the youth, and potentially other relevant people involved with the child/adolescent, as well as review relevant documentation (e.g., report cards, previous assessments, etc.). The standardized tests are administered by a psychologist or psychometrist. The results of the assessment could lead to a diagnosis or diagnoses, but not always.
What Does an Assessment involve?
Interview and questionnaires with parents/youth and review of relevant data (e.g., report cards, prior assessments, relevant medical documentation)
Administration of standardized tests, observations, and clinical interviewing with the youth
The feedback session is directly between the youth and/or parents, and the psychologist. The psychologist will explain the results of the assessment, highlighting the areas of strength and need, and providing recommendations and next steps.
After the feedback has occurred, you will be provided with a detailed report. The report will include the results of the standardized testing, as well as a clinical formulation (write up summarizing the testing and bringing the information all together to explain the youth’s profile), and recommendations. The recommendations that WonderTree psychologists make will be tailored to the youth and based on the assessment results. This is your report, you can share it with whomever you feel is important to have the information, such as the school and family doctor.
Have a question? Read our common questions document below:
Common Questions about Assessments: What if I am concerned about more than just academic functioning? If you also would like to explore additional areas of concern, such as mental health, a comprehensive assessment may be a better fit. Additionally, if WonderTree staff feel a more comprehensive assessment or different type of assessment would be helpful during the course of a psychoeducational assessment, this will be discussed with you in order to help make a plan that best fits your goals and needs. When will I receive the final report? In most cases you will receive your report within a month of your feedback session. When should I get a reassessment? Reassessment during times of transition, such as prior to entering high school or out of highschool into post-secondary/work are often recommended. Also, if you feel like there have been significant changes in functioning, a reassessment prior to these times of transition may be helpful. For post-secondary purposes it is recommended around grade 11, or once a student turns 16. This allows clinicians to use “adult” based testing which post secondary institutions tend to prefer. However, there is utility to assessment before or after grade 11. Feel free to consult with our team to determine if this is the right time for reassessment. I am transitioning into post-secondary education and I need support, what can I do? At WonderTree we acknowledge the importance of receiving the right supports from infancy to young adulthood. We strive to help youth gain a better understanding of themselves and their learning profile as they transition to adulthood. For youth who have had a prior assessment, or have not have a prior assessment but have been receiving informal supports in elementary and high school, a psychoeducational assessment may be helpful prior to the transition to secondary and/or the workplace. Assessments prior to post secondary can help students advocate for themselves and ensure they receive the academic supports they need in college or university. If you have had a prior assessment with a diagnosis, and an Individual Education Plan, you may be able to submit this to the school disability department. This may lead to interim accommodations (provided for a short period of time upon starting post-secondary) as you pursue an updated assessment. Students who qualify for OSAP funding may be able to access funding towards a new psychological assessment. Some students may also qualify for additional bursaries through the OSAP Students with Disabilities program (e.g. for mental health, technology, etc.) if they have a prior diagnosis. For further information please read the following: OSAP Students with Disabilities Program- https://osap.gov.on.ca/OSAPPortal/en/A-ZListofAid/PRDR019233.html Do I need another assessment if I had one in elementary school or early high school? Many colleges and universities require an assessment that was completed within the last 3 years. Post secondary institutions will require these updated reports. Incoming students will not automatically receive the same accommodations at college or university that they received at high school. Once you transition to Post-Secondary, your support is through the Office of Students with Disabilities at the College/University. Unfortunately, most school boards do not provide “exit assessments” for students transitioning from high school to post secondary. It is worth checking with your schools academic support department if it is possible to receive on through them before reaching out to WonderTree. How do I explain a psycholoeducational assessment to my younger child? We would encourage you to explain it to them in a developmentally approrpatie way for their age, such as "you are going to meet with a psychologist/psychometristwho are people that work with lots of kids and teens to help figure out how they learn best. In order to do this, you are going to do lots of different activities, like word games, building things, drawing, and some "school stuff". Most kids find a lot of the activities fun. When there are tricky things, you will just do a few of them and then move on to something else. You will be able to take breaks when needed and check in with mom/dad/caregiver when you feel like you need to"