Psychologists use tests and other assessment tools to measure and observe a client’s behavior to arrive at a diagnosis and guide treatment. Psychological testing may sound intimidating, but it’s purpose is to generate a profile of strengths and challenges in order to best serve the interests of the client.
Psychologists administer tests and assessments for a wide variety of reasons. Children who are experiencing difficulty in school, for example, may undergo aptitude testing, attention testing, behavioral assessments, or tests for learning disabilities. Tests designed to measure skills such as manual dexterity, reaction time, and long-term memory assists a neuropsychologist diagnose conditions like brain injuries or dementia. Members of the court may avail themselves of psychological assessments provided by expert witnesses to assist in determining competency to stand trial or how best to make appropriate decisions regarding outcomes and sentencing.