How do I book an assessment?
To book an assessment, please email us at email@example.com and we will send you a package of information that details everything you need to know. If you have any specific questions about psychoeducational assessments or gifted testing that you were not able to find an answer to on this FAQ page, please email Dr. Valentin directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.
What is the first step of the psychoeducational assessment or gifted assessment?
After a decision has been made to proceed with a psychoeducational assesssment or gifted assessment, parents will be emailed an estimate of fees depending on your child’s needs and unique situation. You will also be provided with a comprehensive parent questionnaire regarding your child’s developmental history and current behaviours. We ask parents to complete this questionnaire and send it back to us before the assessment or bring it with you on the day of the assessment. We also request that parents provide us with any supporting documents (e.g., report cards, previous assessment reports, list of medications, IEP, IPRC, etc) before the assessment.
Extended Health Insurance: If you have extended health coverage, please check as to any specific requirements regarding the receipt (e.g., how much is covered for each family member, hourly rate covered for psychologists, etc).
How long does the testing take?
The assessment usually takes place over the period of one day, approximately six hours from 9:30 a.m. until 4 p.m. We do this to see how a child performs over the course of a day, just like they are expected to at school. If for any reason the child is not functioning as well as they normally would, in the judgement of the assessor, the assessment is discontinued and rescheduled for another day. This is also the case if the child gets too tired, or for any reason cannot function well, especially in the afternoon session. Sometimes, but rarely, the assessment needs to be spread over three or four sessions. In any case, the assessment is not complete until we are satisfied that we have enough information to make conclusions about strengths, weaknesses and what appropriate interventions, if any, need to be provided.
Why does it take a whole day to do the testing?
We like to see how a child performs over a whole school day. It is important to know if a student’s performance significantly declines in the afternoon. We like to be as comprehensive as possible in determining the causes of any learning problems so that we can make the best recommendations for intervention and remediation. Even six hours of assessment is sometimes not enough time to gather the necessary information. When this is the case we schedule more time at no extra cost.
What happens during the feedback session?
Once the psychoeducational assessment has been completed, all of the information gathered is carefully analyzed and included in the comprehensive assessment report. The basic results of the assessment and detailed recommendations are conveyed to parents (and sometimes to older students) at a one-hour feedback meeting as soon as possible after the assessment has been completed. Please note that we do not include a feedback session for our gifted assessments, but this can be provided at an additional cost.
Will the report have recommendations for school and home?
Yes, whether the student was found to have a learning disability or not, the report will describe in detail the processing strengths of the student and exactly what processes need to be addressed by both the parents at home and by the school. The most important part of the report is the appropriate interventions and recommendations that have proven to be effective in minimizing the learning difficulties.
I am afraid my child will be labelled – what are the benefits of being identified as an exceptional student?
While there are some possible problems with being “labelled”, the benefits far outweigh the risks. Firstly, your child and their classmates likely already know that he/she has a learning problem. Getting the appropriate label with good feedback can assure your child that they are not “stupid”, as many children with learning problems assume, but that just like everyone else there are some things they are good at and some things they are not so good at. Furthermore, having the label in the current education system ensures that your child will get the support and accommodations they need (or at least the best that the school can provide given their limited resources). In most schools, without the label, a student cannot get the support needed to achieve up to their potential (e.g., extra time on exams, use of computer technology to facilitate reading and writing such as Dragon Naturally Speaking and Kurzweil).
What do I need to bring with me on the day of the assessment?
- If you received a package of questionnaires prior to the assessment, please bring all completed material with you.
- Please bring photocopies of all report cards and any previous assessments. If you bring original material, please ensure that you collect them when you return for the feedback session.
- Feel free to bring any drinks or snacks for your child to have during the day.
- Don’t forget to bring reading glasses (as necessary, for you and/or your child), medication, reading material for the waiting room, etc.
Please note: It is not necessary for both parents to accompany the child on the day of assessment, but we recommend that both parents attend the feedback session following the psychoeducational assessment.
What is the psychoeducational assessment day schedule?
Please try to come on time for your assessment (usually 9:00 am or 9:30 am). Our gifted assessments take approximately 3 hours to complete with a short break(s) if needed. The comprehensive psychoeducational assessment may take up to 7 hours and usually finish approximately at 4 pm. If additional testing is required or it is difficult for your child to complete the testing within one day, we will reschedule the assessment for another day.
Lunch break is at 12 p.m. for about 45 minutes. Parents are asked to supervise their child during lunch. We encourage families to go out of the building for a lunch break. Alternatively, families are welcome to bring food and use our kitchen facilities.
Assessments are on a one-to- one basis only. During the assessment parents are welcome to either wait in our reception area or leave the building. If you are leaving the building, please leave your cell phone number with the assessor.
What are your fees for assessments and policies regarding payment?
Our assessment fees vary according to the individual needs and requirements of the child. As previously noted, we always send parents an estimate of fees prior to the assessment. A one-hour feedback is included in the cost of our full psychoeducational assessment, but not our gifted assessment. This may be provided at the request of parents for an additional cost.
Full payment is due by cheque (paid to Valentin and Blackstock Psychology Inc) or cash on the day of the assessment. If paying by cheque, please include your child’s name in the “Memo” and the type of service being provided.