Assessment is a process that uses a wide range of information to gain an understanding of a person and their needs. The information employed may include: historical records, interviews, observation, and/or a wide variety of tests (e.g., psychological, educational, vocational, etc.), inventories and rating scales. Many of the tests and measures employed are very specialized, and are only available to professionals with advanced training in testing and assessment. Different types of assessments are undertaken based upon the question(s) at hand. Some of the more common types of assessment are summarized below.
A cognitive assessment (also called an intelligence test or an "IQ" test) focuses upon the individual’s thinking and problem-solving skills. Click here for more detailed information about IQ tests.
A GATE (Gifted and Talented Education) assessment is essentially an IQ test that is administered with the goal of determining if the examinee’s level of intellectual functioning is sufficiently high to qualify for admission into enriched educational programming. Click here for more information about the tests typically used in GATE assessments.
A psycho-educational assessment is typically undertaken when a child is experiencing difficulties at school. Psycho-educational assessments focus upon the student’s learning rate, learning style, achievement, adjustment and learning needs.
An academic assessment evaluates a student's achievement levels -- often in the "core" subject areas of reading, writing and mathematics. These assessments may also focus upon the student's instructional needs.
An educational feasibility assessment is undertaken to determine the type and level of retraining that will be most suitable for a worker who, usually as a result of an injury, is no longer able to perform his/her previous job.
Personality assessments focus upon the individual’s character, and their long standing behaviour patterns.
A psychological assessment focuses upon the individual's mental health and adjustment.
Custody and access assessments are usually requested by the courts. They are typically undertaken to ensure that those who will have access to a child, or be caring for that child, are suitable for such a responsibility.
Parenting assessments are also often initiated by the courts. They focus upon the skill set necessary for providing adequate care for a child.
Vocational assessment seeks to identify where a worker’s interests, aptitudes and restrictions (e.g., strength, colour vision, etc.) fit with specific jobs/careers, training requirements, and the prevailing market conditions or projections.
A job focus assessment is a form of vocational assessment that seeks to identify jobs that require a skill set the worker already possesses.
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