Child & Adolescent Assessments

Assessments available for children and adolescents

Please note: NBP does not currently have clinicians to assess children younger than 6 years old.

North Brisbane Psychologists is able to conduct assessments for children and adolescents in a range of developmental areas, including:

  1. Diagnostic Assessment of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD);
  2. Cognitive ability, IQ/Intellectual assessment, functioning testing;
  3. Diagnostic Assessment of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD);
  4. Adaptive Behaviour / Functional Assessment for NDIS or other support purposes.

How can an assessment help my child?

The results of the assessment show areas of strength and weakness which can help a person to maximise learning, enhance strengths, and develop areas of weakness. The scores are often used by schools and organisations (such as Education Queensland or NDIS) to determine if someone qualifies for additional support, programs, or payments. The results of testing cannot guarantee any of these, but may help a person access different supports. 

Parents say cognitive assessments help them to advocate for their child at school or to work with schools to maximise learning. It might help by showing that:

  • your child isn’t naughty but is struggling to keep up and needs more support
  • your child isn’t slow but just has difficulty with a specific aspect of learning (such as problems with reading or paying attention)
  • your child needs additional support because of a specific weakness (such as problems with verbal explanations and language skills)
  • your child’s cognitive skills are developing appropriately and issues might be related to problems with mood or social skills

The Process

  1. Initial Referral – In the first instance, if you are worried about your child’s functioning or development, see your GP to talk through possible reasons and service options. *If your child needs an ADHD or ASD assessment and you are already seeing a psychologist, please ask them to do a screener. Most psychologists have access to screening tools. Bring the results from the screening survey to your first assessment appointment.
  2. Contact Us – Book and pay for an initial intake appointment. We suggest a 2-hour appointment for the initial one. This will be $390. Bring all related paperwork, assessments and any previous reports you have from doctors, therapists and schools. During that initial appointment, your psychologist will ask about your child’s strengths, abilities, difficulties, challenges and developmental history. S/he will then be able to let you know how the assessment will be conducted and give an approximate cost. Neuro-developmental issues and cognitive assessments can be complex and sometimes multiple assessments are needed to answer your questions.
  3. Medical checks – It can also be beneficial to ensure your child’s general health, including hearing and vision, has been checked in the last 12 months before proceeding with a psychological assessment.
  4. Assessment – Your child will then attend their assessment session(s) with the clinician. The number and length of assessment sessions depends on the purpose of the assessment as well as your child’s engagement with the testing. Assessments are conducted in a relaxed environment using standardised tools, and are responsive to your child’s needs.
  5. Feedback & Reporting – A parent-only feedback session is scheduled approx. 3-4 weeks after the assessments sessions. In this session, the psychologist will provide a written and verbal report with an explanation of the results, as well as recommendations to ensure you and your child receive the appropriate support. Based on results we will match you with a suitable practitioner to treat and care for the child’s needs going forward.

FAQs about Assessments

Can I get a Medicare rebate?  

Currently, Medicare rebates do not apply for any assessment when using a Mental Health Treatment Plan, however autism diagnostic assessments may be rebated via Medicare if referred by a paediatrician or psychiatrist. The referral must state that they have billed the required MBS item to Medicare. Some private health funds may provide rebate. 

Is the down-payment refundable?

The $390 downpayment for the initial 2-hour intake appointment (payable at the time of booking) is only fully refundable with 3-day’s notice.

Do I need a referral?

With this in mind individuals and families can self-refer to us for any assessment. 

What tests do we use?

We use a range of ‘gold standard’ standardised assessment tools that have substantial research and evidence to support their reliability and validity. These assessments allow the psychologist to provide you with information as to how your child’s performance in different skill/ability domains (assessment results) compares to other individuals of the same age. 

How much will it cost?

The cost of an assessment depends on many factors and a price will be provided to you after your initial appointment.  However, as a guide you can expect to pay between $1500 and $2500 for a child and adolescent assessment.

Why are assessments so expensive?

It’s very important an assessment is done thoroughly and completely, as often you will not be allowed to repeat this for a number of years. Your psychologist will spend many hours with you during your intake, assessment and feedback sessions but generally will spend even more hours outside of these times. In addition, the tests themselves carry a significant cost for each administration. Your psychologist also needs to consider and plan for your assessment, speak with other individuals to gain more information (such as school teachers), score and interpret the results and write a comprehensive report. Psychologists often end up being paid less for their time for psychological assessments compared to therapy.

What do I tell my child about the appointment?

Before the assessment you should tell your child that you are coming to see someone who is going to do different thinking games with them, and that most children find the different activities fun. Avoid describing the appointment as a test or assessment as this can make some children feel anxious. 

Can I sit with my child during the assessment?

Parents are encouraged to join their children in the assessment session, for the first part at least. This is a chance for your child to feel comfortable before getting started and therefore, s/he will hopefully be more engaged. During testing, parents are welcome to stay but if their presence is a distraction, it may be preferable to leave. We find that most children find the assessments quite fun and warm up quickly, so don’t usually need their parents in the room, but please negotiate this with your psychologist at the time. For autism assessments, parents of young children will remain in the assessment room for the duration of the assessment session. 

Can I access treatment services for my child?

Yes, our clinicians can provide interventions for children and adolescents experiencing a range of developmental, social, emotional, or conduct issues. These options range from behavioural modification and Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) to social skills training and emotional management. We also provide support for parents.

Can an assessment be completed via telehealth?

Yes, some assessments can be completed via telehealth.  Others may require one or two in person appointments.

Can you do an assessment for NDIS?

Yes, we can do some types of NDIS assessments, specifically assessing for adaptive behaviour such as communication, social skills, and daily living skills.  Please make sure that you advise us if your assessment is to be used for the NDIS so that we ensure you receive a report that can be useful for this purpos