What to Expect on the Day of Your Child’s Appointment for Neuropsychological Evaluation
What to bring to your appointment:
- A completed history form if one was sent to you prior to your appointment
- Any prior psychological or neuropsychological evaluation reports
- Any prior school reports (e.g. a Full and Individual Evaluation or Psychoeducational Evaluation report)
- Your child’s most recent 504 Plan if he/she has one
- Your child’s most recent Individualized Education Plan (IEP) if she/he has one
- A written list of whatever questions you may have for us
If your child takes medication for ADHD or other conditions, please be sure that he/she takes the medication as usual before arriving for the evaluation. We want to be sure that the testing is completed while your child is at his/her best.
Please make sure that your child eats a normal meal before arriving. Keep in mind most evaluations last between 2-4 hours, so please plan accordingly. Your child is welcome to bring a snack or drink.
Please make sure you bring any assistive devices, medical equipment, or medicine your child may need such as eyeglasses, hearing aids, a glucometer, etc.
What to tell your child
Explain that he or she will be asked to complete some thinking activities during the appointment, either using paper-and-pencil or, in some cases, on a computer. Some of the activities will be like schoolwork, but there are no grades. We are trying to learn about the child’s strengths and any difficulties she/he may have, in order to help him/her do better at school or home. You can also explain that she/he will not be getting a shot or having blood drawn—we are “talking doctors.”
When you arrive at the clinic on the day of the evaluation, you will be met by one or more members of our team. All team members will introduce themselves to you and explain their role on the team.
- The Neuropsychologist is the attending doctor who oversees the evaluation and supervises the other team members. The neuropsychologist will always meet with the caregiver, interview the child, and complete some portion of the testing with the child. The neuropsychologist will also interpret the data, write (or oversee writing of) the report, and discuss the results with you (usually on a different day).
- Psychological Associates (PAs) often do much of the actual testing. PAs are professionals with a masters degree who are licensed with the State of Texas, and have significant experience working with children and adolescents and administering neuropsychological tests. PAs are directly supervised by the attending neuropsychologist.
- As we are a training clinic, a trainee may also be involved in your child’s evaluation, under the direct supervision of the neuropsychologist.
- Externs are doctoral students in psychology who are working here on a part time basis to gain clinical experience.
- Interns are doctoral students in psychology who have completed all of their coursework and are with us full-time for one year as a final requirement before receiving their PhD.
- Postdoctoral fellows have received their doctoral degree in psychology, and are working with us full-time for two years to obtain specialized training in neuropsychology.
In most cases children will be evaluated in an exam room without their parent present (unless the child is very young or requires parent assistance for a medical problem). While your child is being assessed, you will probably be asked to complete some questionnaires while you wait. At some point during the visit, the attending neuropsychologist will meet with you to complete a diagnostic interview, to better understand your child’s history and your questions and concerns.
Feedback and results
When the evaluation is completed, an appointment will be made for a follow-up “feedback” visit on another day, during which time the neuropsychologist will sit down with you to discuss the results and recommendations. It’s a good idea to write down any questions you might have before you come and bring them with you to the appointment.
Results are not typically available on the day of the evaluation. You will receive a full written report—with the history, results, diagnoses, and recommendations—within one month of your initial testing appointment.