Psychological Report Writing

I'm not the world's leading expert on assessment, never claimed to be and don't really want to be that person.Most of my work is directed at changing dysfunctional behavior so that kids, and the people around them, can live better lives.Did the psychologist even bother to ask the mother, father, or even the lawyer that referred the child to him any of this or did he simply start typing his report over an old one on his work-processor and forget to change that material?

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Assuming that the examiner can adequately administer and score/interpret the devices used in assessing someone, there are two main ways that a psychological evaluation can be inadequate.

In the first, the examiner can fail to review the background material and previous reports thoroughly.

I'm not talking about simple typos, which are easy to make and easily corrected.

Let me give just one example: a report I read recently stated that the child was the product of a full-term normal delivery (what everyone hopes for because this presents the fewest problems in a number of ways for both the mother and child). " Well, that child was the subject of a lawsuit in which the parents were suing the obstetrician for negligence during the caesarian delivery of their 2 month pre-mature infant!

I would routinely have physicians write orders for me to do "projectives" on a child without any rationale or "context".

Now it might be fine for a physician, who knows more about such things than the nurse, to order blood work and to specify the blood tests to be run by the nurse or technician - but this does not work for psychological tests because they need a context in which to be placed and the physician normally just doesn't possess the training to make the right selection.I have done traditional psychometric (IQ, Achievement, etc.), personality (MMPI, MMPI-A, MMPI-II, etc.), and Functional Behavior Assessments (direct observations, ABC charting, etc.) over the years and have even managed to integrate the various forms of assessment into the same evaluation.When teaching and supervising students doing psychological assessments, I expect to see mistakes, but I also expect the basics to be done by anyone who wants to apply any psychological knowledge to real human beings.It is therefore very strange to see so many reports, that I would never have allowed students to have begun, with signatures on them in files as if they were finished.One thing that most psychologists of my acquaintance don't appear to understand is that most psychological evaluations are not written for use by other psychologists, or even other mental health professionals, but for use by parents, teachers, administrators, lawyers, and even by the student themselves.In the second, the examiner can present a battery of devices (tests) which do not address the areas of concern (either completely enough or at all).When asked to evaluate a student the first question that should be asked is "Why? What is the "referral question" that the person asking for the report wants answered - essentially why did they think an evaluation by a psychologist would be helpful and what specifically are they looking for from the report.There are some specific learning issues that go along with premature birth, and so if this report remained in the file and the child went to school with it available to the teachers it might have undercut the appropriate evaluation of that child for learning problems.So why is it that so many reports are inadequate, bad, or just plain wrong?Sleep - Not Optional As a Parent - ABA Aspergers & Depression ABA, Retirees, and Tri Care Briefing the Teacher Does RU Certify Therapists? EIBI and Cost "The Autism Puzzle" What is BCBA anyway? My answer: certainly not a great deal of what comes across my desk these days. How to answer when insurance says ABA is experimental. PECS Diagnosis-Eligibility Release Records NAS on Autism Sleep Tips Hire an ABA? Aggression Communication FBA NASP & FBAs Rx data sharing More than Rx needed Social Maladjustment A good Psych Report?


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