Assessment slides

Assessment slides - Assessment Assessment • • • Used...

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Unformatted text preview: Assessment: Assessment: • • • Used to gather info about a child/family Often used to make a diagnosis Also used for treatment planning and for evaluating whether a treatment worked • During an assessment, it is crucial to keep in mind the questions to be addressed • Must take into account usefulness, reliability, and validity when selecting an assessment method Issues unique to child assessments Issues unique to child assessments • Usually the referral is from teachers or parents; therefore info collected from these sources is very important • Developmental considerations • Mandatory school attendance­frequently problems are school based • Social/family functioning is very important Areas to assess include: Areas to assess include: • • • • • • • Physical status/health Adaptive behaviors Social maturity Emotional stability Classroom behaviors Academic performance Relationship with peers/family Behavior rating scales: Behavior rating scales: Advantages • • • • • Inexpensive and easy to administer Comprehensive Most have normative data Excellent for repeated assessment Can obtain data from different perspectives • Can be administered via computer • Most are valid and reliable Behavior rating scales: Behavior rating scales: Limitations • Information processing bias • Idiosyncratic characteristics of the rater – Parental tolerance – Desire to have child look good or bad – Parent mood and psychopathology • Global impressions – Easy to discount role of situational factors Clinical interviews: Clinical interviews: Advantages • Establish rapport and a therapeutic • • • • alliance with parents Info about specific nature of problems Info on history and course of problems Can explore family factors that may contribute or exacerbate the problems Can be structured or unstructured Clinical interviews: Clinical interviews: Limitations • Retrospective recall bias – More likely to remember things that fit with current status – Human memory is fallible • Parents don’t have a normative basis for judging • • child’s behavior Parents’ own emotional problems may distort their responses to the interview Parents may be motivated to present their child in a particular light Child interviews: Child interviews: Advantages • Used to establish rapport and explain purpose of • • • • assessment Can obtain child’s view of the problem Can determine attributional style Can assess cognitive maturity, activity level, degree of compliance, social skills with adults, etc Children are best informants of internalizing problems (e.g., fears, sadness, low self­esteem) Child interviews: Child interviews: Limitations • Generally not used to determine diagnosis • Child interviews (especially for children under 10) have low test­retest reliability, but reliability increases with age • Clinician observations during the interview have limited validity Objective psychological tests: Objective psychological tests: Advantages • • • Given under standard testing conditions Usually have normative data Usually have excellent reliability and validity • Usually assess school­related factors, like IQ and achievement • Can derive specific treatment strategies from the testing results Objective psychological tests: Objective psychological tests: Limitations • Test environment is artificial and may not replicate the child in the classroom • Many tests have a bias against minority children • Too much credence can be given to a single test score (e.g., IQ) Projective psychological tests: Projective psychological tests: • Often used by clinicians, even though their use is not supported by research • Validity and test­retest reliability are low • Usually don’t tell us anything we don’t already know • But, – Good way to break the ice and build rapport – Excellent means for child to express himself Behavioral observations: Behavioral observations: Advantages • Can determine antecedents, behaviors, • • • • and consequences Can take place in school, home, or clinic Can validate parent and teacher concerns Provides important info for setting up behavioral treatments Recognizes the importance of situational factors in a child’s behavior Behavioral observations: Behavioral observations: Limitations • • • Very expensive and time consuming Can create an unnatural environment Less useful for internalizing disorders than for externalizing disorders • Possible bias in observing­expectancy effects Social/emotional and familial Social/emotional and familial measures: • Rationale­the impact of a child’s social worlds are important • There are many different settings that may influence a child’s behavior • Parental factors can also influence a child’s behavior, like marital discord, maternal depression, or paternal substance abuse Child data: Child data: • Includes rating scales given to child that measure anxiety, peer relationships, etc • These measures are becoming more standard in assessments of children • Measures have been recently developed that are reliable and valid and have data on norms How are measures used? How are measures used? • Ideally, assessments take a multi­ measure, multi­informant approach • Many clinics use a multidisciplinary assessment team to reduce burden • Some children may also need to be referred to a medical doctor to rule out medical causes for psychological symptoms Typical child assessment: Typical child assessment: • Semi­structured interview with parents • Parents complete several standardized rating scales • Teachers also asked to complete behavioral rating scales • Short interview with child to establish rapport, followed by IQ and achievement tests • Behavior observations if necessary Temperamental types: Temperamental types: • “Easy” child—mild, predominantly positive in mood, approachable, adaptable, rhythmic • “Difficult” child—predominately negative in mood, more intense emotions, not as adaptable, varied rhythms • “Slow to warm up” child—low in activity, low in approach, lower adaptability, variable in rhythm ...
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