Evaluation

Clinic evaluations are very comprehensive.  Information gathered during the evaluation process is used for diagnostic purposes and to differentiate between disorders or diagnoses that can often present in very similar ways. However, we also use these data to identify your child’s unique strengths and weaknesses so that we can develop individualized recommendations and strategies to be used at home, in school, or with other professionals and service providers.  Thus, we at the Psychoeducational Clinic believe that the evaluation process begins with a thorough assessment of the ‘problem’ and ends with a comprehensive and individualized treatment plan that meets your child’s unique needs.

Evaluations are conducted in the areas of:

  • Learning Disabilities
  • Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder
  • Autism Spectrum Disorder
  • Giftedness
  • Memory
  • Emotional and behavioral difficulties
  • Neuropsychological Testing

Evaluation Q&A

A: Evaluations are tailored to answer the questions parents, teachers, and/or students bring to us. Thus, the test battery is likely to be somewhat different for each student tested. Common issues include possible learning disabilities in the areas of reading, writing, and/or math; possible attention deficits; giftedness; and other learning issues related to performance and/or behavior in an academic setting. Emotional concerns are also frequently screened during these assessments but are not typically the primary focus of an evaluation.

A: To schedule an appointment, call the Psychoeducational Clinic at (919) 515-1713. Leave your name, phone number, a time you can be reached, and a brief statement of the reason for your call. Your call will be returned as soon as time allows, hopefully within a day.  Background information and questionnaires will then be emailed to you.  Once these forms are returned, along with a $150 deposit that is applied to the total cost of your evaluation, we will contact you to schedule your appointment(s). Scheduled appointment times are reserved for you alone, and you are responsible for contacting the Clinic should your plans change.

A: After the background information is received through the mail, time will be set aside to talk with parents of children through grade 12 before working with the student. In the case of students of college age, this initial appointment is typically held with the student alone. This initial appointment is important to develop a clear understanding of goals for the evaluation and to further understand any issues that may be related to referral concerns. Selection of an appropriate test battery will follow from this interview. Student testing will be scheduled either in one long day (usually only advised for older students, from 9:00 to approximately 3:00) or in two half-day sessions (usually for elementary-aged students, from 9:00 to approximately 12:00). A feedback session will be scheduled approximately two to three weeks after the testing is completed. A detailed written report, including test descriptions, test results, interpretation, and suggestions to address problem areas will be provided at that time.

A: It is important to discuss the evaluation with your child before arriving at the Clinic on the day of testing. For young children, usually one or two days ahead is best, but parents should use their discretion. It is important to help your child understand that the evaluation is very different from the testing the typical school student is accustomed to. All testing is individual, one-on-one testing, with the examiner orally asking questions or giving directions and the child either responding verbally or, in some cases, manipulatively (for example, putting puzzle pieces together). There are no "bubble sheets." The pace of testing is matched with the student's needs, and breaks are taken when needed. Children usually respond best to an explanation that the goal of the evaluation is to better understand what they do well and what is harder so that parents and teachers can make good decisions as to how to best teach them. It is sometimes better not to use the word "test." Likewise, it is best not to suggest to the young child that s/he will be playing games. We hope the evaluation is enjoyable to your child but do not want to minimize the effort the child must put forth. Many parents find the general word "activities" to be helpful. Keep a regular schedule, but give your child a good night's rest and a nutritious breakfast.

A: Fees for full, comprehensive evaluations vary depending on the age of the child and complexity of the referral concern, but generally range from $1700- $2100. Neuropsychological evaluations can extend higher than this window. Your provider can give you a better estimate of the cost for your child after the initial parent/caregiver meeting. The fee for Early Kindergarten Entry (EKE) and Academic Giftedness (AG) testing is $450. 

For full evaluations, payment is typically broken into three parts. The initial deposit of $150 is due with your registration materials and will be applied to your total balance.  Half of the estimated remaining cost is due at the initial parent intake, and the remaining balance is due at the feedback session. For AG and EKE evaluations, a $150 deposit is requested with your registration materials, and the remaining balance is expected at the testing session. Flexibility in payment schedule is available upon request. Payment is made by cash or by check made out to NCSU. Although we cannot currently accept debit or credit cards, this payment option should be available by late February 2017.

A: We do not file insurance or accept Medicaid. However, we will provide you with a statement, which includes procedure codes and diagnostic codes, at the final appointment. This is the information you will need to file for insurance yourself. If insurance coverage is necessary for you to proceed with the evaluation it is important that you check with your insurance company before scheduling. Most testing is billed under the CPT codes of 90791 and 96101, and all evaluations are under the supervision of a fully-licensed psychologist health services provider. Often, insurance companies will pay for evaluations for attention deficits, which are considered a "mental health" issue, but are hesitant to pay for evaluations for learning disabilities, which are considered "educational."  However, insurance company policies vary tremendously.

A: We do not generally provide direct intervention services. One goal of most evaluations, however, is to develop a "plan of action" to address referral concerns. We will help you to know how and with whom to embark on this plan. You may decide at a later time to initiate re-evaluation either for up-dated information or to respond to new issues.


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