What Is The Purpose Of An Evaluation?
An evaluation provides a detailed understanding of your child's strengths and needs. This is helpful in determining how your child learns best and what supports your child may need to function at his/her fullest potential. This knowledge will allow you to maximize your child's academic, behavioral, social, and emotional successes both at home and at school.
Evidence-based interventions, remediation, and support strategies will be specifically tailored to reflect
your child’s needs, strengths and interests to foster success. Dr. McGuire has experience collaborating closely with schools, educational advocates, families, lawyers, physicians, and other treatment providers to ensure that your child receives seamless support services throughout the evaluation.
Who Would Benefit From An Evaluation?
Youth who typically benefit from an evaluation present with:
Interest in gaining information about their cognitive and learning profiles in order to maximize academic, social and emotional successes at home and at school
Gifted and Talented Testing
Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder / Attentional Weaknesses
Executive Functioning Weaknesses (e.g., inhibition, planning, organization of thoughts and/or materials, cognitive flexibility)
Autism Spectrum Disorders
Communication Difficulties / Language Disorders
Posttraumatic Stress Disorder / Trauma
Social Skill Weaknesses
Memory and Learning Profiles (i.e., how your child learns new information most efficiently)
What Is A Neuropsychological Evaluation?
A neuropsychological evaluation is the most comprehensive assessment of your child's current functioning.
What Areas of Functioning Are Assessed?
Dr. McGuire's assessment battery evaluates functioning in a number of areas, such as the following:
Verbal and Language Abilities (e.g., Verbal Knowledge, Verbal Reasoning, Receptive / Expressive Language)
Memory and Learning (i.e., how to study and learn most efficiently)
Executive Functioning (i.e., mental processes that direct an individual’s thoughts, actions and emotions, particularly during active problem solving)
Adaptive Functioning (how well individuals meet the common demands of life and how independent they are compared to their same-aged peers)
Emotional Functioning / Self-Esteem
What Does an Evaluation Entail?
Comprehensive Parent Interview:
Dr. McGuire meets with the client’s parent(s) or legal guardian(s) to review the client's developmental history and provide a focus for the assessment. During this meeting, Dr. McGuire collaborates with you to identify presenting concerns and goals.
Classroom Observation (If Applicable And With Parent Consent ):
With your consent, and when indicated, it is often helpful to observe your child within the classroom setting. Dr. McGuire's experiences and training in School Psychology enable her to understand the ways in which the classroom environment may be helping and hindering your child's ability to access his/her education. This additionally informs recommended supports and interventions that may assist your child in reaching his/her full potential.
Interviews with Members of Your Child's Team (If Applicable And With Parent Consent):
With your consent, it is often helpful to speak with individuals who know your child very well in order to obtain a clear understanding of your child's functioning across settings (e.g., teachers, pediatricians, therapists, prescribers, other providers). Dr. McGuire will integrate the expertise obtained from various team members so that members of your child team can fully understand your child's unique needs and better support your child.
Dr. McGuire's assessment batteries are determined based on your child's presenting and reported concerns and based upon your child's performances during testing. Testing batteries reflect your child's unique needs. The battery utilizes verbal, nonverbal, iPad, computer-based, and paper and pencil tasks. Dr. McGuire's evaluations are flexible, and she typically adds measures to the testing battery based on your child's performance during testing sessions. As such, testing batteries vary in length and typically involve 1 to 3 testing sessions that may last two to four hours each. Although comprehensive, testing sessions are a very positive experience.
Separate Parent and Adolescent Feedback Sessions:
The parent feedback session is an opportunity to discuss findings and recommendations and to ensure that you have a clear understanding of your child's unique profile. The separate adolescent feedback session empowers your child to have an understanding of his/her strengths and needs so that he/she can become empowered by his/her unique abilities and learn how to advocate for himself/herself.
Comprehensive Evaluation Report:
Parents /Guardians will be provided with a comprehensive written evaluation. This report provides information regarding your child's functioning across the aforementioned areas and provides recommendations, as needed. It is, essentially, your child's brain on paper. Recommendations focus on strengthening and supporting any areas of vulnerability and on utilizing your child's unique profile of strengths and needs to improve his/her functioning in and outside of school. Dr. McGuire remains available should additional referrals and consultation be needed.
Abbreviated Evaluation Report:
Parents /Guardians may prefer to share these brief written documents with ancillary members of a child's team (e.g., tutors, teachers).
Summary of Scores:
This document includes your child's performances on all assessed areas of functioning.
Brief Overview of Feedback:
This document provides a concise overview of your child's strengths, needs, diagnoses, and most important supports.