Psychological Testing and Assessments - Frequently Asked Questions

What is psychological testing?

Psychological testing is an assessment process designed to sample a person’s cognitive (reasoning, judgement, intellect, memory) and emotional functions. The assessments are based on uniform procedures of administration, scoring, and interpretation to ensure consistent and standardized results. Psychological tests are tools in the assessment process used to arrive at decisions, to make diagnoses, to predict behaviors, or to promote one’s self-understanding and positive development.

What are the types of psychological testing?

  1. COGNITIVE ASSESSMENTS – collecting a sample of a person’s knowledge, skills, and memory when one of the following is indicated:
    1. Childhood Indications
      When a child is experiencing significant difficulties academically or behaviorally, testing can determine if either the problem is related to learning, attention, concentration, and/or emotional factors.
    2. Adulthood
      When adults are considering career changes or experiencing changes in their ability to pay attention, concentrate, or remember, ability testing may be warranted.
    3. Older Adults
      When a person is experiencing frustration with apparent loss of memory, testing can measure cognitive strengths and weaknesses and provide an objective measure to assess daily living skills, such as driving ability and independent living.
  2. PERSONALITY ASSESSMENTS – assessing a person’s emotions, thinking, behaviors, and character styles in order to:
    1. Answer diagnostic questions and to provide treatment recommendations.
    2. Identify important issues, attitudes, beliefs, and feelings that may impact counseling or other therapeutic treatments.
    3. Identify possible impairment in a person’s perceptual processes.
    4. Address legal questions related to the degree of psychological distress a person is experiencing and possible causes of distress.
  3. VOCATIONAL ASSESSMENTS – assist individuals with decisions to be made in the selection of a career, including:
    1. High school junior and seniors in the process of selecting a college or trade school.
    2. College students having difficulty selecting an appropriate major or having difficulty maintaining the necessary grade point average.
    3. Adults who are not satisfied with their present position.
    4. Adults who have lost a job and would like to explore other career alternatives.
    5. Adults considering further education or training to begin a new career.

What is the evaluation procedure?

  • During the first appointment, the psychologist will conduct an interview to determine whether testing is appropriate and will present the testing battery options. The cost for the battery of tests is dependent upon whether or not you will need a full or partial psychological evaluation, a short report, a summary letter written to your doctor or child’s school, or only verbal feedback.
  • When testing is determined, a combination of tests is usually necessary for a more comprehensive evaluation. The clients and/or the caregivers work with the psychologist to determine the most appropriate battery of tests to be given.
  • The total administration time for the tests varies between two to six hours, depending upon the purpose of the assessment. The testing session may be scheduled over a few days.
  • After the client has completed the battery of tests, the psychologist will present the results in a feedback session. Consequently, each testing battery also requires an initial consultation session prior to the assessment and a feedback counseling session immediately following the assessment.

What assessment questions are appropriate for children? What are the assessment fees?

  • Does my child have Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD/ADHD)?
    Fee ranges between $500 to $800
  • Does my child have cognitive or intellectual limitations?
    Fee ranges between $350 to $800
  • Does my child have a learning disability?
    Fee ranges between $500 to $800
  • Does my child have autism or Asperger’s Syndrome?
    Fee ranges between $500 to $800
  • What are the personality patterns for my child?
    Fee ranges between $200 to $600

What assessment questions are appropriate for adults? What are the assessment fees?

  • What are my career interests and aptitudes?
    Fee ranges between $100 to $1,000
  • Do I have Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder?
    Fee ranges between $500 to $800
  • Do I have a learning disability?
    Fee ranges between $500 to $800
  • What are my cognitive abilities?
    Fee ranges between $500 to $800
  • What are my personality patterns?
    Fee ranges between $200 to $600
  • How might my personality patterns influence my ability to recover from bariatric surgery?
    Fee ranges between $200 (letter to physician) to $500 (full psychological evaluation)
  • How might my personality patterns influence my judgement in carrying a weapon for my job?
    Fee is $350 (testing and completion of form to PA Police Department)