To see a Psychologist you normally do not need a referral. However in some circumstances and if appropriate, you may be able to get a Mental Health Care Plan from your GP, or a general referral from your Paediatrician or Psychiatrist. If you have this referral you may be able to claim back part of the consultation fee from Medicare.
Initial consultations and subsequent consultations are usually 50 minutes (as per the Australian Psychological Society). Most Psychometric assessments and IQ / Educational assessments take between 1.5 and 3 hours depending on assessments completed, age of the child and rate of response of your child or adolescent.
It is not encouraged for parents to sit in during an assessment as they may act as a distraction. Usually Andrew would speak with parents initially to obtain background information and relevant information and then they can either sit in the waiting room or go off for a walk, shopping or have a coffee.
IQ stands for Intelligence Quotient.
There are various types of IQ tests, most of which rank an IQ of 100 as average. An intelligence quotient or IQ is a score derived from a set of standardized tests that were developed with the purpose of measuring a person's cognitive abilities ("intelligence") in relation to their age group.
Generally the attribute of intelligence refers to quickness of mental apprehension (or mental agility). It is often confused with knowledge, wisdom, memory, or a myriad of other attributes and in general has a variety of meanings depending on the context in which it is used. IQ invariably refers to the attempt to quantify the attribute in its meaning of mental comprehension.
A Learning Difficulty exists when there is a significant discrepancy between one's ability and achievement.
A Specific Learning Difficulty (usually abbreviated to LD) means a disorder in one or more of the basic psychological processes involved in understanding or in using language (spoken or written), which may manifest itself in an imperfect ability to listen, think, speak, read, write, spell or to do mathematical calculations. It also includes directional confusion, sequencing difficulties and short-term memory retention problems. These problems are NOT primarily due to visual, hearing or motor handicaps, NOR due to mental retardation, emotional disturbance, or because of environmental, cultural, or economic disadvantage. The individual is considered to have a LD if achievement is not commensurate with age and ability levels in one or more of the above specific areas when provided with learning experiences appropriate for age and ability levels.
A "gifted child" is a child whose potential in one or more areas of skill would place him or her in the top 2-5% of children of the same age. The areas of skill can be traditionally academic, creative, intrapersonal etc.
The demonstrated achievement or potential ability can be in:
Attention Deficit Disorder is a biologically based condition causing a persistent pattern of difficulties resulting in one or more of the following behaviours:
Difficulty attending or focusing on a specific task. People with Attention Deficit Disorder may become distracted within a matter of minutes. Inattentive behavior may also cause difficulties with staying organised (e.g. losing things), keeping track of time, completing tasks, and making careless errors.
Difficulty inhibiting behavior. These people are in constant motion. They may engage in excessive fiddling, leg swinging, and squirming in their chair.
Difficulty controlling impulses. These people do not stop and think before they act. They say and do whatever comes into their mind without thinking about the consequences. They might say something inappropriate and regret it later, blurt out a response to question before a person is done speaking to them, or have difficulty waiting for their turn in line.
What are my child’s strengths and weaknesses?
Is my child’s ability age appropriate? Are they underachieving in the classroom?
Is my child eligible for special provisions at school?
Is my child ready for school? – School Readiness Testing
How can I teach my child appropriate behaviour management strategies?