Neuropsychological Evaluations

Why Get Neuro-Psychological Testing?

At some point, you, your child or teenager may need to undergo neuropsychological testing. In most cases, a doctor, pediatrician or other medical practitioners may recommend this specific type of evaluation based on certain symptoms or behaviors. Here at The Child & Family Counseling Group in Fairfax, we offer comprehensive neuropsychological testing to patients of all ages.

What is a neuropsychological evaluation?

An evaluation or neuropsychological test is a detailed assessment of certain skill sets and how they are connected to the brain. This involves certain skills such as memory, concentration, visual-spatial skills, attention, problem-solving and emotional functioning. A neuropsychological evaluation should not be confused with neurological imaging tests such as an MRI or CT scan.

The purpose of an evaluation is for a neuropsychologist to better understand the difficulties that a patient may be having in certain aspects of their life. For example, a parent may bring their child in to see one of our neuropsychologists because they are having certain issues in school and perhaps these issues may have to do with certain neurocognitive factors that our psychologists can not only pinpoint but also help you and your child better manage to improve their social, academic and personal life.

There are many reasons that a doctor may recommend a neuropsychological evaluation including,

  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Autism spectrum disorder
  • Behavioral problems
  • Visual-spatial issues
  • Fine motor problems
  • Language delays
  • Trouble with executive functions (e.g. planning; organizing)
  • Impulsivity
  • Inattentiveness or hyperactivity
  • Learning difficulties
  • Intellectual disorders or disabilities
  • Secondary learning or behavioral issues due to congenital disorders
  • Giftedness (e.g. a high IQ), which causes learning problems

There are several components to neuropsychological evaluations. The intake session is a chance for our neuropsychologist to get to know the patient and why they are here. If this evaluation is for a child, our psychologist will also talk with you, the parent, to obtain more information about any issues or difficulties the child is displaying at home or school. An intake session can take anywhere from one to two hours.

If your child is old enough they may need to fill out a questionnaire; otherwise, a parent can fill it out for them. It’s normal for a child to have to undergo neuropsychological testing over the course of a couple of days. The length of testing will depend on several factors including the reason for testing and your child’s age; however, some testing can be completed in just one day.

If you want to learn more about neuropsychological testing and how it could benefit you or someone you love, then call The Child & Family Counseling Group at (703) 352-3822.