Psychological Assessment & Testing
What is psychological assessment?
Psychological assessment and testing is a service that identifies mental health disorders through a combination of interviews, self-report measures and psychological batteries. The results also help rule out certain types of psychopathology and other long-term mental health issues.
This testing is different from psychoeducational assessment in that we are primarily looking for non-academic disorders. Here are some examples:
Attention-Deficit/ Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)
Autism Spectrum Disorder
Major Depressive Disorder (MDD)
Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD)
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
Oppositional Defiant Disorder
Obsessive Compulsive Disorder
Although these issues certainly can affect academic or work performance, many of these diagnoses do not tend to be used for testing or academic supports. A diagnosis of ADHD can qualify a student for an IEP plan under “Other Health Impairment,” depending on the severity, and so ADHD testing may also include methods for psychoeducational assessment.
Do I have a mental health disorder?
The stress and demands of modern living takes a toll on all of us. Many people have difficulty with maintaining their mental health, and over time this can lead to more severe consequences. In the United States, nearly 1 in 3 people will be affected by one or more mental health issues (Kessler et al, 2012), which means that you or someone you love may be struggling.
Here are some of the most common red flags of a mental health diagnosis:
Thoughts of death or dying
Dependence on alcohol or other drugs
Loss of sex drive
Isolation or loneliness
Consistent worry or fear
Anger outbursts or frequent conflict
Each person is different, and so mental health disorders can present differently from person to person. For example, children who are depressed may appear angry or irritable rather than saddened or lethargic (DSM-5). When someone receives a diagnosis, this is simply a medical concept used to guide treatment – not a label or a predictor of one’s future.
The first point of understanding a diagnosis involves identifying the area of life that is most affected. In order to receive a diagnosis, one (or more) of the following issues must be present:
A diagnosis can help put words to your difficulties and set you on a path to a happier, healthier life. Here at OC Psychology Center for Assessment and Psychotherapy, we provide psychological assessment (testing) services designed to accurately identify mental health disorders and provide diagnostic clarity. As the quote above notes, the key is early detection and treatment - particularly for children (see Garvey, Avenevoli, & Anderson, 2016). If you or a loved one are struggling with their daily function, work or school performance, or life satisfaction, do not wait. Contact the OC Psychology Center today to find answers and get things back on track.
If you are interested in our Psychodiagnostic assessment services, contact us today! We also provide psychoeducational assessments for school-aged children to identify learning disability or other academic issues, as well as assessment for professional or college-level examination accommodations.
What does psychological assessment look like at OC Psychology Center?
Our psychological assessment services are entirely confidential and scheduled based on your availability. You will meet one-on-one with one of our licensed professionals to complete a testing battery that is designed based on your needs. These sessions may include a diagnostic interview, self-report measures, questionnaires for family members or friends, and full psychological assessments.
If you would like to receive Psychodiagnostic assessment for your child, testing sessions will be held primarily between the child and the psychologist. Some younger children will complete testing with their parent in the room, which will be discussed before testing begins. Assessment may require scheduling multiple blocks of time (2-6 hours) depending on the testing, along with a final feedback session where we provide you with the results and our recommendations. A copy of the report will also be given to you to use, and can be sent to your child’s school if requested.
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We would love to answer any questions you might have about how our assessment and psychotherapy service can help you.
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Learn more about child therapy, teen therapy and young adult therapy for treatment of ADHD, depression, anxiety and learning problems, and how our counseling services and psychological testing can help.