Many children and adolescents experience a range of problems with cognition (thinking) and learning. These problems impact early development and the ability to achieve academic success at school.
Neuropsychology can help find out what is going on. An accurate assessment is able to identify each child's unique set of cognitive strengths and weaknesses, leading to an understanding of how these could be contributing to the difficulties they are experiencing.
Assessment information provides a solid foundation for helping children. By knowing what is going on, it is then possible to guide the development of strategies to assist with areas of difficulty, treatment planning, home and classroom supports, and decision making regarding appropriate educational placements.
The CDN Neuropsychology service is able to provide detailed assessments for children with the following struggles. This assessment is able to measure not only what is going on, but also provide explanation for why this is happening.
- Writing, spelling and other areas of learning
Concentration and self control (Executive Function)
- Attention and distractibility
- Impulsivity and hyperactivity
- Working Memory
- Organisation and planning
Other questions and challenges
- Possible intellectual impairment
- Developmental disorders
- Neurological conditions
- Uncertainty regarding appropriate educational placements or support needs
Assessments are planned individually for each child to ensure they examine the specific combination of skill areas relevant to the child’s presenting issues. Areas assessed include:
- Intelligence (IQ)
- Verbal and nonverbal reasoning and problem solving
- Working memory
- Executive functioning
- Processing speed
- Reading skills
- Mathematics skills
- Visuo-spatial skills
- Phonological processing
- Completion of background questionnaires by the child’s parents and teachers to provide information about the child’s functioning at home and school.
- An initial interview with the parent and child. In this session, the child and parents will participate in a discussion with the Neuropsychologist regarding their strengths and interests, difficulties, and relevant background information.
- Individual assessment sessions with the child. Typically, two separate 1.5 hour assessment sessions will be carried out, although this might vary depending on the presenting issues. The number of assessment sessions and the length of the assessment sessions will be discussed during your initial interview.
- A feedback session with the parents (and child if appropriate) to discuss and explain the assessment findings and recommendations for support.
- Provision of a comprehensive report including the assessment results, opinion, and support recommendations.
Treatment and intervention
Neuropsychological treatment can also be of benefit for many children. Depending on individual patterns of strengths and weaknesses, this could include:
- Training in planning and problem solving skills
- Development of strategies to assist with organisation skills at home and at school
- Teaching attention and impulse control strategies
- Training in study skills
- Development of tools and techniques to assist with memory functioning