What to Expect
For general information on visiting Seattle Children’s clinics, please see Your Child’s Clinic Visit.
Things to do before your appointment:
- Download and complete the Rehabilitation Psychology Questionnaire (PDF).
- Complete and return an Authorization to Exchange Patient Health Information Form (PDF). This form gives permission to your child’s school or other community health or mental health providers to release information to our clinic and providers. If the patient is age 13 or older, their signature is required in addition to the legal guardian signature.
- Bring your child’s testing records, Individualized Education Program (IEP), 504 plans and report cards from school. Other helpful information includes reports related to previous neuropsychological evaluations or speech-language therapy, and any school district, state or federal records.
- If your child is attending outpatient counseling, please bring any relevant notes.
- Make sure your child gets a good night sleep and eats breakfast in the morning.
- Give medicines as you normally would before the appointment and during the day.
- Bring everything that your child normally uses, like glasses, hearing devices and adaptive equipment.
These points will help you prepare your child for their neuropsychological evaluation:
- Assure your child that there will be no pain or needles.
- Describe the appointment as a day of activities that involve things like listening, talking and remembering.
- Let your child know that you will be working with one person doing adult activities while your child does activities with another person.
- Let them know that you will be nearby. (Parents are not allowed in the testing room and are expected to remain in the waiting room.)
- If your child is older or a teenager, you might describe the day as being a little like a school day with testing.
- Let your child know that they can take breaks to use the bathroom and eat lunch.
What happens during the appointment?
- For a neuropsychological evaluation, if your child is not verbal, both of you will meet with the neuropsychologist. You’ll talk about how your child has developed and their current social, school and behavioral abilities. The neuropsychologist will observe your child’s behavior.
- If your child is verbal and able to take part in the testing, you will meet with the neuropsychologist while your child is tested by a different person (a psychometrist).
- During testing, your child will do hands-on activities, write with paper and pencil, and answer questions. Sometimes they also may use a computer.
- Parent usually do not stay in the room during testing unless the child is very young. Your child will have breaks during the day that depend upon age and ability to stay focused.
- The testing for school-aged children and teens often takes one full day. For preschool children, testing can take a half-day. Nonverbal children might take 1 to 2 hours.
- The psychometrist doing the testing cannot give you any specific information about the test results.
What happens after the appointment?
- We review the results and may gather more information from your child’s provider or school.
- We will schedule a follow-up visit to discuss results and recommendations. This visit may or may not include your child depending on what we decide during your first visit.
- After we talk about the results, we will mail you a written report. This report is confidential and only shared with schools and community providers if you and/or your child (13 years old or older) sign an Authorization to Exchange Patient Health Information Form.
- Based on your child’s needs, we may work with their healthcare team or attend school meetings that could help your child qualify for an IEP or 504 plan. Schools use these plans to outline services they can provide to your child.
- To help determine how your child is doing, we may complete additional evaluations and compare results to the first evaluation.