Why seek a neuropsychological evaluation?
Academic subjects are really byproducts of cognitive processing abilities. Difficulties in the processing areas that are necessary for success in specific subject areas raise the probability of problems in that subject.
Identification of the deficient processing abilities is the first step to understanding how to address academic problems. Once these weaknesses are identified, then individualized or differentiated instructional strategies can be developed to target those areas.
Similarly, identification of executive functioning deficits-that is, those processes that regulate students’ behavior, thinking, emotions, and access to their abilities-further helps to create a remediation plan that removes students’ obstacles to success.
Neuropsychological evaluations provide the most comprehensive information on an individual's cognitive processing abilities, executive functions, and personality issues.
Psycho-educational evaluations can offer important information; however, they do not assess the full range of executive functions, an area often essential in identifying student's obstacles to learning.
Why seek a neuropsychological evaluation from me?
Individual reports from school districts’ psychologists and learning specialists are meant solely to convey the results of testing. They purposely do not contain diagnoses or eligibility information as these are generated at the child study team meeting where data are pooled. These reports also tend not to include specific recommendations as these, too, are decided by the team. Consequently, these types of reports will may not meet requirements for third parties like the SAT/ACT boards.
My neuropsychological reports contain not only the results of testing, but also whether the examinee has met criteria for a specific diagnosis or eligibility for special education services or a 504 plan. The reports also spell out specific and individualized remediation strategies to address the findings. They are written for parents and other third parties (i.e. schools, SAT/ACT board, colleges) and build a strong case for the need for accommodations based upon how the obtained findings reflect functional limitations that prevent your student from performing to his/her ability rather than just report the test scores. I am also intimately familiar with the laws (i.e. ADA; IDEA) that dictate criteria for eligibility and how to use them to support my arguments.
What distinguishes my evaluations and reports from other neuropsychological evaluators?
As both a private practitioner, a former coordinator of special education, a university professor, and a teacher, I understand not only the neuropsychological basis for learning disorders, but also have worked directly with teachers and helped them to translate the results of testing into real world educational remedies for problems like learning disabilities, ADHD, and Autism. When I write recommendations, they are strategies that I have tried and successfully applied.
Why can’t I just get a note from my doctor to obtain supports or accommodations?
A physician’s note will not be sufficient to document an educational disability or to obtain accommodations on any of the standardized tests (i.e. SAT, ACT, LSAT, MCAT).