image of student with ADHD who has difficulties focussing

ADHD ASSESSMENT

Have you wondered if your child has ADHD? Or has a teacher or counsellor brought up this possibility to you? A psychological assessment can help determine whether what you or others are observing is related to ADHD. 

Some kids with ADHD show symptoms in the inattention domain (e.g., distractibility, disorganization, forgetfulness, etc.), while other kids with ADHD show symptoms primarily in the hyperactive/impulsive domain (e.g., restless, fidgety, “driven by a motor,” impulsive, disruptive). Many show symptoms in both domains.

 

Only by evaluating a variety of areas can we determine if a primary attention disorder is present, as opposed to some other issue masking as ADHD. This is because so many other problems can mask as ADHD. For example, if a child has a specific learning problem, or a problem with language comprehension, they are likely to miss instructions, tune out, avoid homework, and get easily bored, just like a child with ADHD. Similarly, if a child is struggling with another mental health problem, such as mood or anxiety issues, they can struggle to sustain attention and concentration. They may also struggle with anxious restlessness or heightened energy. 

What is involved in an ADHD Assessment:

  • A brief interview by telephone with parents about presenting problem and goals of the psychological assessment

  • 1.5-2 hour meeting with parents to review the child’s/youth’s developmental history

  • A telephone consult with the child’s main teacher

  • Psychometric testing to evaluate overall intellectual abilities, reasoning and organizational skills,  basic academic skills. and sustained attention. This testing allows me to observe your child's thinking and attention style, and to rule out comorbid issues that could be making as ADHD, such as language issues, and learning disabilities

  • Note that I do the testing of your child myself, rather than use a psychometrist, which allows me to make important observations of their approach to solving problems, but also to discuss their reaction to various tasks and the strategies they use

  • Comorbidity/social emotional screening, including self, parent, teacher rating scales

  • A review of previous evaluations, medical records, educational reports

  • Self, parent/observer, and teacher rating scales of ADHD symptoms

  • Written report with recommendations to improve academic, vocational, and family functioning

 

The cost of an ADHD assessment (based on an estimate of 14 hours of service) is roughly $3000.