Assessments available for children and adolescents
Please note: Benchmark Psychology does not currently have clinicians to assess children younger than 6 years old.
Benchmark Psychology has highly skilled psychologists who are available to conduct assessments for children and adolescents in a range of developmental areas, including:
- Diagnostic Assessment of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD);
- Cognitive ability / functioning testing;
- Learning difficulties, including specific learning difficulties;
- Diagnostic Assessment of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD);
- Adaptive Behaviour / Functional Assessment for NDIS or other support purposes.
How can a cognitive assessment help my child?
The results of the assessment show areas of strength and weakness which can help a person to maximize their learning, enhance areas of strength, and compensate or develop areas of weakness. The overall scores are often used by schools and organisations (such as Education Queensland) to determine if someone qualifies for additional support, programs, or even payments. The results of this test cannot guarantee any of these things but may help a person access different services.
Parents often say that cognitive assessment helps them to advocate for their child at school and to work with schools to maximize learning. It might help by showing that:
- your child isn’t naughty but is just struggling to keep up and needs more help
- your child isn’t slow to learn but just has difficulty with a specific aspect of learning (such as problems with reading or paying attention)
- your child needs additional support because of a specific area of weakness (such as problems with verbal explanations and language skills)
- your child’s cognitive skills are developing appropriately and issues might be related to problems with mood or social skills
Can I get a Medicare rebate?
Currently Medicare rebates do not apply for any assessment when using a Mental Health Treatment Plan, however autism diagnostic assessments may be rebated via Medicare if referred by a paediatrician or psychiatrist. Some private health funds may provide rebate.
Do I need a referral?
With this in mind individuals and families can self-refer to Benchmark Psychology for any assessment.
What tests do we use?
At Benchmark Psychology we use a range of ‘gold standard’ standardised assessment tools that have substantial research and evidence to support their reliability and validity. These assessments allow the psychologist to provide you with information as to how your child’s performance in different skill/ability domains (assessment results) compares to other individuals of the same age.
How much will it cost?
The cost of an assessment depends on many factors and a price will be provided to you after you have submitted an enquiry. However, as a guide you can expect to pay between $1500 and $2200 for a child and adolescent assessment.
Why are assessments so expensive?
When you have an assessment it is important that it is done thoroughly and completely as often you will not be allowed to repeat this for a number of years. Your psychologist will spend many hours with you during your intake, assessment and feedback sessions but generally will spend even more hours outside of these times. They also need to consider and plan for your assessment, speak with other individuals to gain more information (such as school teachers), score and interpret the results and write a comprehensive report.
What do I tell my child about the appointment?
Before the assessment you should tell your child that you are coming to see someone who is going to do different thinking games with them, and that most children find the different activities fun. Avoid describing the appointment as a test or assessment as this can make some children feel anxious.
Can I sit with my child during the assessment?
Parents are always welcome to join their children in the first part of the assessment session. This is a chance for your child to feel comfortable with the clinician before getting started. During testing parents generally leave the room, as they can be a distraction or provide help unknowingly. If absolutely required, parents can sit in the room out of the child’s view and silently read a book. We find that most children find the assessments quite fun and warm up quickly, so don’t need their parents in the room. For autism assessments only, parents of very young children will remain in the assessment room for the duration of the assessment session.
Can I access treatment services for my child?
Yes, our clinicians can provide interventions for children and adolescents experiencing a range of developmental, social, emotional, or conduct issues. These options range from behavioural modification and Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) to social skills training and emotion management. We also provide support for parents. Find out more about our team of clinicians here.
Can an assessment be completed via telehealth?
Yes, some assessments can be completed via telehealth. Others may require one or two in person appointments.
Can you do an assessment for NDIS?
Yes, we can do some types of NDIS assessments, specifically assessing for adaptive behaviour such as communication, social skills, and daily living skills. Please make sure that you advise us if your assessment is to be used for the NDIS so that we ensure you receive a report that can be useful for this purpose.