Assessments for Children
Psychoeducational testing can tease apart educational difficulties from learning disabilities in several ways. First, the tests that are used in a psychoeducational evaluation are designed to measure specific cognitive and academic skills. This allows the examiner to identify areas where the child is struggling, and to determine whether the difficulties are due to a learning disability or to other factors, such as lack of motivation or poor teaching.
Second, the examiner will consider the child’s overall cognitive ability when interpreting the results of the tests. This is because children with learning disabilities often have average or above-average intelligence, but they have difficulty in specific areas, such as reading or math. By considering the child’s overall cognitive ability, the examiner can rule out the possibility that the child’s difficulties are due to impaired intellectual functioning.
Third, the examiner will consider the child’s history and development when interpreting the results of the tests. This is because learning disabilities often have a developmental component. For example, children with dyslexia may have difficulty learning to read from a young age. By considering the child’s history and development, the examiner can get a better understanding of the nature of the child’s difficulties.
Finally, the examiner will use their professional judgment to interpret the results of the tests. This means that the examiner will consider all the information that they have gathered, including the results of the tests, the child’s history and development, and their own observations of the child, to make a diagnosis.
The results of a psychoeducational evaluation can be used by your child’s school to develop an individualized education plan (IEP) or 504 plan for your child. These plans will outline the specific services and supports that your child needs to succeed in school.