Loyola University Chicago

Loyola Community and Family Services

Psychological Assessments (Testing)

 

Para leer esta sección en español, haga clic aquí: Evaluación Psicológica

 

Loyola Community & Family Services (LCFS) is a community mental health agency that has been established by Loyola University Chicago (LUC), in collaboration with Loyola University Chicago’s Schools of Education and Social Work, to serve the mental health needs of children and families residing and connected to the Rogers Park and Edgewater communities. LCFS offers a range of evaluation services for children and adolescents. Assessments are conducted in the areas of:

  • Academic problems
  • Executive Functioning
  • Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)
  • Autism Spectrum Disorders
  • Developmental Delays
  • Psychological functioning
  • Emotional or behavioral problems
  • Intelligence/giftedness

 

What is the purpose of a psychological assessment/evaluation?

The primary purpose of an assessment is to answer a specific question regarding some difficulty. Some examples include: trouble in regulating attention, behavior, emotions and moods, learning problems, or issues with coping with stressful events. The goal of the assessment is to help you better understand your child’s strengths and weaknesses, and to provide recommendations that will allow your child them to maximize their potential.

Assessments may include but are not limited to the following:

  • Interviews and discussion with the child (depending upon their age and ability to communicate), parents, teachers, and other adults who are relevant to the presenting concern and potential treatment (e.g., therapists, physicians)
  • Formal testing using standardized measures that assess your child’s specific intellectual and academic skills, behaviors, perceptions, and attitudes
  • Questionnaires
  • School-based observations
  • Feedback that integrates all relevant findings, explains any related diagnosis, and clearly presents appropriate treatment recommendations

 

What types of Psychological Assessments are provided by LCFS?

We provide both monolingual (English) and bilingual evaluations within the following formats for children whose primary language is Spanish:

  • Psychosocial evaluation – Assessments used to assess for mood or personality disorders, and to plan appropriate personalized treatment which can be used to understand how your child sees the world, what their strengths and weaknesses are, and to help develop, or revise treatment plan and goals for therapy.
  • Psychoeducational evaluation – Assessments used to determine your child’s current cognitive and school functioning; whether your child is achieving as well as his or her peers, to evaluate learning differences, problems, and disorders, to plan future academic course and accommodations for classes and standardized testing.
  • ADHD/Executive Functioning—A psychoeducational evaluation that includes neuropsychological assessments to measure executive functioning to determine the presence of ADHD, or other problems related to executive functioning.
  • Autism Spectrum Disorder—A psychoeducational evaluation that includes intellectual and learning assessments. Additional administration of rating scales and the Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule, Second Edition (ADOS-2) are used in conjunction with school observations, and interviews to determine the presence of autism spectrum disorders.
  • Early Childhood Assessment-A psycho-educational and psychosocial evaluation is available to help determine current levels of functioning and provide recommendations for early intervention services to provide interventions for your child that will help prepare them for school.

Types of Psychological Assessments NOT provided by our clinic:

  • Court-ordered, forensic, or custody evaluations
  • Persons whose primary problem is alcohol or other drug use
  • Walk-in services
  • Emergency services:  If you need immediate medical attention or believe that you are at risk of harming yourself or someone else, please call 911.

Each potential case will be reviewed by the LCFS licensed staff for the appropriateness of fit with a university-based clinic. There may be instances where it may be determined that your child may be best supported via school-home consultation led by one of our student clinicians, or other interventions to address behavioral/academic concerns or other outside resources. This will be discussed with you once we have completed the initial interview.

 

Frequently Asked Questions about Assessments

 

How long will my assessment appointments take?

The length of the assessment will vary based on the presenting concern(s). Most test batteries take between 6-15 hours to complete, and are separated into several appointments. Testing begins at 9 AM in the morning, with a 45-minute break scheduled for lunch, and usually ends by 3:30 PM. We will provide you with attendance documentation for your child’s school and your employer for each day of evaluation.

 

What occurs during the evaluation process?

The first step in doing an evaluation is completing an intake, or clinical interview. During this appointment which typically takes two hours, we will interview you (and your child when appropriate) about the presenting concern. The clinical interview also includes the following areas regarding your child and family: background information (e.g., who lives with your child?), developmental (e.g., was your child born at full-term?), medical (e.g., are there any existing medical diagnoses?), and academic history. The parents/caregivers and children (aged 12 and older) will also be asked to complete a brief rating scale to help gather information about the child’s current functioning. Therefore, it is important for both parents/caregivers (if possible) to be present to provide detailed information about the presenting concern.

The next step in the evaluation process involves a multi-step process of testing and interviewing, completing observations at your child’s school, scoring and checking, report-writing and supervision.  This step can take anywhere from four-eight weeks. The actual testing of your child is completed at LCFS over a period of two-three days. Once the scoring for the testing is completed at LCFS, you will be asked to come in for a ‘feedback’ appointment, within 2 weeks, during which the student clinician with the assessment supervisor will discuss the initial findings.

 

Who will complete my child’s evaluation?

Graduate student clinicians from psychology programs at Loyola University Chicago, under the direct clinical supervision of licensed psychologist staff, complete most of the evaluations at LCFS. As a result, the clinic can provide services at a dramatically reduced rate.  Class schedules, training issues, and other challenges within an academic setting may limit the clinic's ability to address all requests for services. Please be sure to let the LCFS licensed staff know if your evaluation is time-sensitive (e.g., needed for school-expulsion hearing, school, or treatment placement), so that we can determine if we will be able to provide the services within your timeline.

 

How long does it take before the written evaluation is finished?

Because we are a graduate training clinic, every part of the assessment is closely supervised by Ph.D. licensed psychologists. This close supervision means that you will get the best quality assessment possible; however, it means that our assessments often take longer than in other medical settings.  The average time for a written report containing finalized results and recommendations is typically within 8-10 weeks from the intake appointment. Assessments that are completed over the summer typically take longer than 8-10 weeks because we are unable to observe the child at school or interview their teacher(s). Depending on the starting date for your child’s school (e.g., August vs. September), observations, interviews and teacher rating scales are typically completed by early October.

 

How much will my child’s evaluation cost?

Loyola Community and Family Services (LCFS) assesses fees on a sliding scale, which means that the fee for your assessment will be based on your gross annual income and the number of people that live in your household (yourself included). Currently, we do not accept any form of health insurance. Your fee can be paid in installments, but must be paid in full before we can release the results of your evaluation. We accept cash or credit cards (including HSA debit cards). We do not accept checks.

 

How do I schedule my child’s evaluation or get more information about whether my child needs an evaluation?

If you have questions about whether your child may benefit from having an assessment, you can talk to your primary care provider (PCP), or other healthcare provider.  Alternatively, you can call our psychological evaluation coordinator, Dr. Jennifer Rose, at 773-508-3704 to discuss whether your child might benefit from an evaluation. Please note that, because we are a training clinic, we cannot take all evaluations, but are happy to provide referrals to other psychological services if we cannot provide your child’s assessment. Then, your child’s information will be added to our waitlist, and you will be contacted shortly to begin scheduling your appointments directly with your child’s assessment clinician.

 

Note: Please also note that the length of our waitlist varies, meaning that it may be some time before you can begin scheduling appointments. We do not take walk-in clients.

 

What should I bring with me to my first (intake) appointment?

  • Relevant medical records: if your child has been psychiatrically-hospitalized (includes partial-day programs), had a major surgery, been in an accident, visited the emergency room (for medical or psychiatric reasons), been medically-hospitalized, it is important that you bring any relevant reports or records with you to your appointment.  Medical records are particularly important for those clients referred by doctors.
  • Bring a list of your child’s current medications and supplements.
  • All records from a therapist/psychologist: If your child has had a previous evaluation or psychological treatment, any records that you have concerning their treatment are helpful to us.
  • Academic records: Especially for psychoeducational evaluations, school report cards, transcripts, individualized education plans, or work samples are very helpful to us.
  • The contact information and addresses for your child’s school, doctors, therapists, and any other person/agencies involved in their treatment.
  • Documentation of household income. Acceptable forms of documentation include: Income tax forms, W-2 statements, Recent paystubs, Letters from your employer.
  • Money for parking and for your appointment. There is public parking available in Fordham Garage (See P2 on map) for $7.00 per day. Cash and credit cards are accepted for payment. There is also on-street parking available on Sheridan Rd. and nearby.

 

What should I bring on the day of assessment (testing)?

  • Please make sure that your child gets adequate sleep before their testing appointment. Also, please be sure that they eat before their assessment appointment. Inadequate sleep and hunger can make your child feel tired and distracted, and make it difficult for him/her to perform at their best. Please bring a lunch or snack and drink for them on the testing days. There are also several restaurants located in the area if you do not bring your own food.
  • Please administer your child’s medications as usual, and bring their eye glasses (even if only required for reading), hearing aids, and mobility devices usually used.
  • It is helpful to bring a light sweater or jacket for your child, as the temperature in our clinic varies significantly.

 

Will my assessment be kept confidential?

Based on the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) laws, we will keep your child’s evaluation records locked and confidential. A copy of the LCFS HIPAA policies will be provided to you during the intake appointment. The student clinician and LCFS licensed staff will be the only individuals allowed to see this specific information. However, if your child reports intentions to harm him/herself or others, we are required by law to share this information with the appropriate authorities. Please note that we are also happy to send an official copy of your report to individuals or agencies that you request (but you must sign paperwork for us to do so).

To ensure the highest quality standards, consistent with a university training site, information obtained from testing may be presented to LCFS licensed staff, other university faculty, and other doctoral students for their input regarding conclusions and recommendations for your child’s case. Prior to sharing any information, identifying information (e.g., your child’s name, school, address, etc.) will be removed.

Recordings of your child’s evaluations may be observed by LCFS licensed staff, or Loyola University Chicago graduate students who are in training at the clinic. Your written permission to record assessments will be obtained on the first day of the evaluation process. Summaries of evaluations may be used for educational purposes, but clients will NOT be identified. In the educational uses specified above, all information you provide will be confidential.

 

What are your hours?

Mondays 9:00 am – 7:00 pm

Tuesdays 9:00 am – 7:00 pm

Wednesdays 9:00 am – 7:00 pm

Thursdays 9:00 am – 7:00 pm

Fridays 9:00 am - 5:00 pm

Saturdays and Sundays: Closed

Please note that all testing of children begins in the morning to ensure that the child is alert and fully able to demonstrate their abilities. The clinic will be closed for all major holidays (e.g., Memorial Day, Thanksgiving) and Good Friday. Please call us at 773-508-3390 if you have any questions about our hours of operation.

 

What is your contact information?

6439 N. Sheridan Rd. Suite 300

Chicago, IL 60626

Main number: 773-508-3390

Fax: 773-508-3415

 

Please direct inquiries for psychological assessments to

Dr. Jennifer Rose

Phone number: 773-508-3704

Email address: jrose4@luc.edu