Assessment

In order to provide the most helpful recommendations that are specialized for each child, adolescent or adult, our team gathers information from several sources to inform our testing services. We provide an in-depth clinical interview with a psychologist where detailed information regarding history, development, and school data are collected. We use the most up-to-date assessment measures and technology available to complete our assessments. A psychologist thoroughly explains the testing results and recommendations in a way that allows our clients to apply the results to daily life and can be utilized by other professionals to guide appropriate and evidence-based treatment plans.

Educational Testing: We offer in-depth intelligence and achievement testing to identify a student’s strengths and weaknesses. We can identify academic areas that would benefit from additional resources and give recommendations to help provide valuable information to the academic team. We also obtain information from parents and teachers as well as conduct in-person school observations to be sure we offer the most relevant and helpful recommendations for your child’s educational needs. Our team is also available to communicate the testing results and a child’s needs to the schools during meetings, such as Response to Intervention meetings.

ADHD Testing: Symptoms of ADHD, such as inattention, hyperactivity, and impulsivity, are also commonly present in other disorders such as learning disabilities, trauma, anxiety, and depression. We offer comprehensive testing to consider not only behavioral aspects of ADHD but executive functioning deficits to be sure the most accurate diagnosis is given and the most appropriate treatment recommendations are provided for each child.

Autism Spectrum Disorders: The DSM-V, the diagnostic manual for mental health, no longer recognizes Asperger’s Disorder but rather offers Autism Spectrum Disorders on a level system and includes the new diagnosis of Social (Pragmatic) Communication Disorder. The diagnosis of ASD and related disorders can be complicated and requires information from several sources. Families Forward uses several methods to gather information, such as in-depth interview, a thorough developmental history, play-based observations, school observations, as well as intelligence, achievement, and behavioral measures. We use only evidence-based measures in the diagnosis of ASD and will be able to provide the ADOS, the gold standard to assess Autism Spectrum Disorders, in 2016. Our services for this population don’t stop at assessment. We work diligently to provide and/or find the services in our area available to provide support for the children and families.

Psychosexual Assessment: Many children engage in sexualized behavior with other children or adults. In cases where this behavior is determined to be outside of what is considered healthy or developmentally appropriate sexual behavior, a psychosexual assessment may be conducted to help determine the nature of the identified behavior and to guide treatment recommendations. Psychosexual assessments involve an in-depth clinical interview with a focus on family practices and behaviors that may contribute to sexualized behaviors , the child’s understanding of sexuality, and objective measures of problematic childhood sexual behavior. The completed assessment is then used to guide appropriate treatment recommendations for each child. The purpose of this assessment is not to determine if a child is in fact guilty of current charges in juvenile court. It is however, useful to determine both individual and familial practices and beliefs that may be contributing to current sexualized behaviors and be an appropriate focus of treatment.

Trauma Assessment: Children and adolescents exposed to traumatic events have a variety of treatment needs and no child responds in the same way to trauma. Families Forward offers comprehensive trauma assessment to understand the many different ways exposure to a traumatic event may have impacted each child. We conduct an in-depth clinical interview to include developmental history, trauma history, and structured diagnostic interviews targeted towards the new DSM-V trauma and stressor related disorders classification. In addition, we provide objective measures of trauma and potential related disorders as well as play and school observations as appropriate. This information is then used to determine the appropriate and unique course of treatment, if needed, for each child.