After gathering some initial information on your child, this free of charge meeting will allow the clinicians to recommend the specific assessments that would benefit your child.
An Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) assessment is a multi-step process that includes information from a variety of sources. We include background information gathered from documents like a developmental history form, previous assessment reports and information from parents during intake. We also request a written report from school personnel who know the child well. Observation data taken during interactions with the child is included as are any standardized assessment results conducted by our staff. There are two main tools used during a basic ASD assessment, the ADI-R (Autism Diagnostic Interview-Revised), the ADOS-2 (Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule), and Child/Adolescent/Adult Sensory Profile (CSP/AASP).
• ADI-R is an extended interview completed by an experienced clinician with a child’s or adult’s parent/caregiver. Information is collected from different areas of functioning to determine if there are impairments in communication and social interaction, as well as evidence of restricted and repetitive behaviours and whether these impairments and behaviours are consistent with others who have a diagnosis of ASD. The ADI-R is only one component in determining if your child has ASD.
• The ADOS-2 is a semi-structured, standardised assessment of communication, social interaction, play/imagination, and restrictive and repetitive behaviours for individuals who have been referred for assessment of ASD. It consists of standard activities that allow the clinicians to observe behaviours that have been identified as important to the diagnosis of ASD according to developmental levels and chronological age. The ADOS-2 is only one component in determining if your child has ASD.
• The Sensory Profile is a standardized questionnaire completed by the parent/caregiver of a young child or an Adolescent/Adult being evaluated. The Sensory Profile looks at your child’s ability to process input using their five senses – touch, sight, hearing, smell, and taste. Research reports that sensory integration may be associated with an ASD diagnoses. While not all persons with ASD have difficulties with sensory integration, many children who are referred to an assessment of ASD present with a complex profile of sensory needs. We include this evaluation tool to help inform parents about the unique needs of their child.
In addition to determining a diagnosis of ASD, your child may demonstrate areas of concern commonly associated with ASD. Some children present with speech/language delays which have a negative impact on their social communication skills. Other children display problems with fine and gross motor skills and have additional diagnoses of Dyspraxia. Still other children present with difficulties in school and learning that could be addressed by an assessment of cognitive skills. To be sure that you have an accurate understanding of the unique profile of strengths and concerns for your child, we offer these additional assessments to be added as needed.
Speech and Language Therapy Assessment
Speech and Language Therapists work with individuals who may be experiencing a range of difficulties in relation to their speech, language and communication skills. Below are just a few examples of individuals who may benefit from a speech and language therapy assessment:
• Children who are at the pre-verbal stage of language development and are communicating primarily through non-verbal means, for example by taking an adult by the hand to show them what they want or by reaching, pointing or gesturing to what they want.
• Children who can use a few single words but are delayed in their language development.
• Children who can combine words together and use phrases, but their overall language development is delayed.
• Children who have difficulties with understanding language used by others, for example they may have difficulty understanding single words or they may have difficulty with understanding and following through on instructions given by their parents or teachers
• Children who are communicating verbally using words and sentences, but they may have speech errors which can make it difficult for others to understand their speech.
• Individuals who communicate verbally, but who may have difficulty with the social aspects of language, for example they may have difficulty with having back and forth conversations or maintaining topics in a conversation.
A psycho-educational assessment is intended to provide valuable information about how your child thinks and learns. It includes two tests which can be done on the same day or separately depending on your schedules. First, we will conduct a cognitive assessment to determine your child’s thinking, reasoning, and processing skills. Next, we will evaluate their academic skills in reading, mathematics, and spelling, as well as written and oral language where indicated. Such an assessment can lead to a diagnosis of a Specific Learning Disability in reading (Dyslexia) and/or maths (Dyscalculia) in children ages 4 to 16 years. Each part of the assessment (cognitive or academic) takes 1.5 hours to complete and will be followed at a later date with a written report and personal feedback session to discuss the results. We highly recommend that you check with your child’s school to confirm they will accept the results and provide intervention prior to booking in the assessment.