Psychological Testing

Psychological testing, conducted in SUWS programming is a comprehensive evaluation procedure that measures and identifies important information about your child or adolescent’s current level of functioning.

What is Psychological Testing?

Psychological testing is a comprehensive evaluation procedure that measures and identifies important information about your child or adolescent’s current level of functioning. Many mental health, behavioral, and/or learning problems share similar symptoms or behaviors. Psychological testing and evaluation can help to:

  • Make an accurate diagnosis or clarify diagnoses
  • Identify factors underlying the symptoms or behaviors
  • Identify risk factors or emerging psychopathology
  • Identify strengths to maximize success in treatment
  • Improve understanding of the complex interplay between emotional, behavioral, cognitive, identity, personality, and/or learning issues.
  • Provide recommendations for treatment and/or educational planning
  • Document need for services and/or accommodations
  • Provide extensive information to help parents, clinicians, and educators understand the child or adolescent’s unique needs and potential

Our Approach to Psychological Testing

At SUWS of the Carolinas, psychological testing and evaluations are conducted through the Center for Research, Assessment, and Treatment Efficacy located in Asheville, NC. The CReATE team is a group of highly skilled doctoral level psychologists with extensive experience in psychological testing and evidence-based assessments and treatments. Collectively, the CReATE psychologists specialize in the evaluation and treatment of mood and anxiety disorders, behavioral disorders, ADHD, learning disabilities, autism spectrum disorders, nonverbal learning disorders, traumatic event exposure and related conditions, substance abuse/addiction and dual diagnosis, and the provision of empirically-supported treatments. A comprehensive written report is provided and is important in helping everyone to understand the testing results and implement recommendations effectively.

The psychologists of CReATE use evidence-based assessment approaches in the evaluation of various mental health conditions. They will provide a comprehensive verbal explanation to the parent(s) about the testing results. The psychologist prepares a comprehensive written report of all findings with explanations of the tests used and the results, a comprehensive psychosocial history, a summary and diagnostic formulation, and recommendations for treatment, intervention, education, and/or after-care planning. They will also consult with your child’s or adolescent’s therapist at SUWS as well as other professionals who may be involved in the care of your child or adolescent, as deemed appropriate.

Our Process for Psychological Testing

The psychologist will see your child or adolescent at the SUWS base camp in a quiet, climate-controlled room that mimics a home setting. He or she will also review your child’s or adolescent’s file and SUWS records and talk with your child’s therapist. In the days leading up to the testing day, your child or adolescent will complete some of the written tests. Immediately following the day of testing, the parent will be sent some forms to complete, usually by email or fax. Then, all of the psychological tests will be scored, reviewed, and analyzed by the psychologist.

At this point, a call will be set up with the parents (1.5-2.0 hours) in which the psychologist will gather more historical information from the parents, give verbal feedback about the testing results, and answer any questions the parent(s) may have. Finally the psychologist will comprise the written report. The entire process takes approximately 17-20 hours, including report-writing and consultation. The verbal feedback is typically conducted within 4 working days of seeing the student, if all testing materials from the child/adolescent and the parent are returned in a timely manner. The written reports are typically completed within 10 working days, if all testing materials are returned in a timely manner.

Standard Part of the Battery:

  • Mental Status Examination
  • Clinical Interview with Adolescent
  • Clinical Interview with Parent(s)
  • Consultation with SUWS therapist
  • Review of file and prior evaluations or mental health records
  • Review of SUWS records
  • Cognitive/IQ Test – Wechsler (WISC or WAIS)
  • Academic Achievement – (WJ-III)
  • Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory – Adolescent Version
  • (MMPI-A) (ages 14-18)
  • Adolescent Psychopathology Scale (APS) (ages 12-13)
  • Millon Adolescent Clinical Inventory (MACI) (ages 13-18)
  • Millon Pre-Adolescent Clinical Inventory (M-PACI) (ages 9-12)
  • Achenbach Youth Self-Report (YSR)
  • Achenbach Child Behavior Checklist (CBC)
  • Sentence Completion Test
  • Substance Abuse Subtle Screening Inventory for Adolescents (SASSI-A2) (if applicable)
  • Comprehensive Report Writing
  • Verbal Feedback to Parents
  • Verbal Feedback to SUWS therapist
  • Verbal Feedback to Educational Consultant (if applicable)

Individualized Part of the Battery:
Evaluations are tailored to meet the specific needs of the child or adolescent. The psychologist will choose 2.0 to 4.0 more hours of testing from the following list to complete the 17- 20  hour evaluation:

  • Rey-Osterrieth Complex Figure Test (Rey)
  • Grooved Peg Board
  • Trailmaking Tests (Trails)
  • Controlled Oral Word Association (COWA)
  • Boston Naming Test (BNT)
  • Delis-Kaplan Executive Function System (D-KEFS)
  • Woodcock-Johnson Tests of Cognitive Ability – Third Edition (WJ-III Cog) Gray Oral Reading Test – Fourth Edition (GORT-IV)
  • Comprehensive Test of Phonological Processing (CTOPP)
  • Beery Test of Visual-Motor Integration (VMI)
  • Test for Auditory Processing Disorders in Adolescents and Adults (SCAN-A)
  • Revised Children’s Anxiety and Depression Scale (RCADS-Adolescent and Parent)
  • General Behavior Inventory (for Bipolar Disorder)
  • GBI-Adolescent and Parent)
  • Vanderbilt ADHD Diagnostic Parent Rating Scale (VADPRS)
  • Rorschach Inkblot Test
  • Semi-Structured Trauma Specific Interview
  • Trauma Symptom Checklist for Children (TSCC)
  • Trauma Symptom Inventory (TSI)
  • Posttraumatic Stress Diagnostic Scale (PDS)
  • Krug Asperger’s Disorder Index (KADI)
  • Brown ADD Scales

I went into this program scared out of my mind. At SUWS, I learned the tools I needed to work through my issues and I'm forever grateful.

– Anonymous Patient