Why consider a screening or assessment?

The purpose of assessment is to uncover a student’s areas of strength and weakness and determine how information is received and interpreted. Assessment can also provide a road map for guiding or informing the work of the educational therapist or specialist.

How can a case manager help?

Boy teenager sleeping on his booksAs your case manager, we help you figure out what kind of screening or assessment is needed  — and why. If you have already had an evaluation or other testing done for your child, we answer any questions and help you understand the results. We conduct screenings and can provide psychoeducational assessments. If needed, we can provide referrals for other evaluations, including neuropsychological evaluation, auditory or visual processing evaluation, or speech and language evaluation. Because approaches and written reports can vary, it is important to seek a referral to a reputable and experienced professional.

What does screening involve?

Screening involves gathering relevant information through observation, interviews, self-reporting, the use of screening tools (questionnaire or survey), and thorough review of school, family and medical history, and work samples. The information gathered through the intake or screening process can also be a valuable introduction to the formal process of assessment.

Screening provides an opportunity to take a look at:

  • underachievement, but evidence of average or above-average ability in some areas
  • signs of poor vision or hearing or difficulty understanding what the student sees or hears
  • problems in the following areas: reading, expressive language (writing, spelling, handwriting) and or math
  • behaviors that can interfere with the learning process, including distraction, impulsivity or avoidance
Screening for academic difficulties includes:
ReadingSubstitutes, deletes, adds or transposes letters and syllablesExpressive Language
Slow and halting reading patterns Loses place easilyProblems with grammar, punctuation, syntax (order of words)
Reading words or syllables backwardsAvoids reading or has difficult, especially reading out loudWeak visual memory for spelling patterns
Phonemc awareness: does not connect sounds to symbols to sound out wordsWeak comprehension when answering questions related to textWriting reveals poor organization, structure and/or content
Substitutes whole words, skips words, re-reads lines in oral readingPoor handwriting or inconsistent letter formation; confuses upper and lower case
Difficulty with math includes:
Recalling math facts & proceduresCopying numbers and working with numbers in columns Left / Right orientation
Directionality in carrying out simple mathConfuses similar numbers or transposes numbersFollowing sequential procedures
Following directions with multiple steps

What Are Psychoeducational & Neuropsychological Assessments?

Psychoeducational assessment consists of an assessment of the psychological
aspects of learning and academic skills. It considers what has been learned in different domains, including reading, spelling, oral and written expression and math. Strategies for Learning can provide psychoeducational assessment.

Psychological aspects:
IntelligenceLanguage Skills
Attention / ConcentrationEye-hand coordination for paper and pencil tasks
MemoryVerbal & Visual Learning
Planning AbilityReflective / Impulsive Response Style

Screening for academic skills includes:
Spelling and writing Reading (phonetic skills, sight vocabulary, comprehension)
Oral expressive skillsMathematics (basic numerical operations, mathematical reasoning)
Listening comprehensionAcademic fluency (speed of reading, writing, calculating)

Neuropsychological assessment/testing is a process by which a person’s cognitive, psychological/emotional and behavioral functioning is comprehensively assessed with an emphasis on cognitive functioning. We strong recommend obtaining a referral from your child’s school or Strategies for Learning, as the quality of neuropsychological evaluations can vary. The testing process includes:

  • detailed interviews and standardized testing of areas relevant to the presenting problem
  • comparing scores to benchmarks or normative test data
  • analyzing and interpreting test results
  • the testing neuropsychologist may provide a diagnosis so that we can understand the underlying problem and how to address it

For more information:

Screening for adults with learning disabilities: