What is a psychological assessment and which tests are administered?
An psychological assessment is a process that uses a combination of techniques to help understand a child’s or adolescent’s behaviour, personality and capabilities. It involves norm-referenced tests, interviews and observations.
Each assessment is uniquely tailored. Depending on the questions that are brought up during the initial meeting, it is decided which tests will be administered
A neuropsychological assessment is used to assess cognitive functioning, and typically involves tests of a variety of areas such as memory, attention, processing speed, reasoning, spatial and language functions.
An educational psychological assessment can involve an assessment of the child’s or adolescent’s level of achievement in the areas of reading, writing and maths skills.
A psycho-affective assessment can help to understand a child’s or adolescent’s socio-emotional functioning. For example, projective techniques such as storytelling and drawings are used to assess the personality structure of a child or adolescent, in order to obtain a better understanding of their emotions and inner life, as well as how he or she perceives himself and the world around him
WHY IS AN ASSESSMENT IMPORTANT?
It offers insights into a child’s or adolescent’s learning, social, behavioral and personality development.
It is helpful in identifying a child’s or adolescent’s strengths and weaknesses.
it aims to tailor recommendations to plan a child’s or adolescent’s educational and mental health needs.
An assessment involves several steps. First, a meeting with the parents (preferably both parents) is organised to go over the school and developmental history. It also allows me to obtain an understanding of the expectations. At the end of this meeting, it is decided which tests would be useful to administer. After the testing, I meet again with (both) parents to explain the results and provide recommendations, as well as to hand over the report. It is also possible to organise a meetings at the school of the child or adolescent or with other third parties such paediatricians or other specialists. If the parents live abroad (for example, of children in boarding schools), we can also organise a video conference instead of a meeting.
COST & REIMBURSEMENT
The costs of the assessment depend on the number of consultations or the amount of hours needed for testing and meetings, which usually varies between 4 to 8 hours. A psychological assessment costs 160 chf/hour. It is not reimbursed by the base insurance (LAMal) yet. However, some complimentary health insurances partially reimburse psychological services. I recommend contacting your insurance company to obtain further information regarding reimbursement, as the coverage varies depending on the insurance policy and your contract.