What is a Psychological Assessment?
A psychological assessment is a type of examination by a psychologist, aimed at clarifying the following:
- mental health functioning
- mental health diagnosis (like depression, anxiety, posttraumatic stress disorder, for example)
- prognosis (is the condition likely to improve?)
- treatment recommendations
- conclusions regarding ability to return to school or work
A psychological assessment typically involes a 1.5 to 2 hour interview with the client as well as possible follow up interview with someone who knows the client well.
Testing involves self-report questionnaires that ask about personality characteristics, symptoms (such as mood changes, memory issues, relational difficulties, and pain for example), and functioning.
Following completion of the assessment, a report is prepared that contains information about the presenting problem(s), the results of the assessment, diagnoses, prognosis, and treatment recommendations.
Clients are often invited to a 1-hour feedback session with the clinician to review the report, to talk about the conclusions, and to discuss any treatment planning.