Psychologist and Evaluator
San Francisco, CA
Phone: (415) 577 - 4750

Educational Testing Services

A thorough psychoeducational evaluation is an important tool to use when clarifying whether an individual has a learning disability, and what his/her learning strengths and weaknesses are. This evaluation is a comprehensive process which includes gathering information about an individual’s learning history, clarifying current problems in school or work, and administering a battery of tests. This battery of tests assesses various aspects of intelligence, academic ability, memory, and other cognitive factors. These tests are ‘standardized’ which means that they are based upon the abilities of other people in your age group. By comparing your results with other people in your age group, we can determine whether your abilities are above or below ‘the average’ person.

More importantly, a psychoeducational evaluation includes an assessment of intellectual ability, otherwise known as IQ. A learning disability is present when measured IQ is significantly higher than academic achievement. In other words, you are smart enough, but it’s difficult for you to demonstrate your intelligence on some typical school tasks. Many individuals who have a learning disability feel uncertain and confused about their ‘intelligence.’ They often feel both smart and ‘dumb’ at the same time, because they feel like they understand the material to be learned, but can’t show their knowledge on tests, or are unusually slow in processing information. The psychoeducational evaluation finally resolves the uncertainty about so-called intelligence, and helps the individual to see exactly what his or her strengths and weaknesses are.

A typical test battery includes:

  • The Wechsler Intelligence Scale
  • The Woodcock-Johnson, Tests of Achievement
  • Nelson Denny Reading Test and/or Gray Oral Reading Test
  • Wechsler Memory Scale or Test of Memory and Learning –select subtests
    • measures of attention
    • measures of executive function
    • measures of processing speed

This test battery will be tailored as needed to answer the referral question. I also consider the testing boards when conducting an evaluation (MCAT, LSAT, GMAT, DAT), and I am familiar with the tests that each board requires when considering granting accommodations.

If it appears that emotional factors may be contributing to school difficulties, emotional measures may be administered as well. Individuals who are struggling in school often feel a sense of failure and disappointment about their inability to do their best, and it is common for an individual to experience some level of frustration or dejection about this difficulty.

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