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Learning Disabilities

IQ Part 4:  Working Memory

After closely studying our first three components of the IQ (Verbal Comprehension, Visual Spatial, and Fluid Reasoning), today’s post will dive into Working Memory and how it impacts one’s cognitive profile. Once again, I am using the WISC-V as the basis for this breakdown.  The WISC-V is administered to children ages 6-16.  However, the WAIS-IV, which is used to assess adults, also contains a Working Memory index score.  Thus, the following information pertains to pretty much all age ranges. What is Working Memory? When I write my reports, I describe Working Memory as: the ability to take in, retain, and [...]

IQ Part 3: Fluid Reasoning

Welcome back to our deep dive into IQ and its various components.  Previously we examined Verbal Comprehension and Visual Spatial and what they both have to do with one’s overall intelligence.  Understanding these domains gives us a good insight into an individual’s cognitive strengths and weaknesses, which can set a student up for success down the road. In today’s post we will look at Fluid Reasoning.  As a reminder, I am using the WISC-V for my basis of these posts.  The WISC-V is administered to younger students (ages 6-16).  The WAIS-IV is a similar assessment that is used to test [...]

IQ Part 2:  Visual Spatial

Welcome back to the next part of deep dive into what IQ is and how it is comprised.  The last post looked at Verbal Comprehension and its various aspects.  In today’s post we will examine the second component of the overall IQ:  Visual Spatial. As a reminder, I am using the WISC-V as my guide since it is the main cognitive assessment I use in my evaluations.  The WISC-V is intended for children ages 6-16.  The WAIS-IV, which is used when assessing adults, contains a component called Perceptual Reasoning, which is similar to Visual Spatial. What is Visual Spatial? In [...]

IQ Part 1: Verbal Comprehension

In my last post, I discussed in general terms how IQ is calculated.  When broken down, the overall IQ is comprised of various cognitive aspects we all possess.  Today I want to examine Verbal Comprehension, its make up, and how it impacts the overall IQ. For purposes of my post, I will discuss Verbal Comprehension as a component of the WISC-V.  The WISC-V is the main cognitive assessment I give to most of my patients, and it is geared towards kids (ages 6-16) rather than adults.  However, the WAIS-IV (used to assess adults) also contains a Verbal Comprehension component that [...]

How is IQ Calculated?

Several months ago I wrote a post titled, Can My IQ Change?  I laid out the history of the IQ test and concluded that one’s IQ can indeed change over time. But the question remains:  How do we calculate one’s IQ? Today’s post is the beginning of a series that will dive deeper into cognitive testing and how I use it in my evaluations. For most clinicians, there are a few standard tests that are used in neuropsychological evaluations to derive one’s IQ.  The two most commonly used are: Wechsler Intelligence Scales Woodcock-Johnson Both assessments include numerous subtests that, when [...]

How to Survive Remote Learning

The 2020-2021 school year has officially kicked off for many students.  Here in Texas several schools began school this week, with just about all of them offering a remote-only option.  My school is one of them, and we had a very successful first day. As other schools begin the reopening process, it is apparent that remote learning will be with us in some capacity for the foreseeable future.  As discussed in my previous post, remote learning offers students safety measures during this pandemic; however, it also presents some challenges even for the most conscientious student. I wanted to share with [...]

Remote Testing for ADHD and Dyslexia

We are now nine weeks into the COVID-19 pandemic, and it has completely changed the way we do business, socialize, learn, teach, and pretty much everything else.  While many states have begun to re-open businesses, they are still operating in limited conditions, particularly those involving in-person meetings. Neuropsychological testing is the basis for most diagnoses of learning disorders and ADHD.  Typically I conduct evaluations in-person in one session that lasts about 2-3 hours.  But in early March that option went out the window.  At the same time, private school admissions season was ramping up.  Many admissions offices require updated neuropsychological [...]

The Transition to Online Learning

Like just about everyone else in the United States (and most parts of the world), I’m currently on lockdown in my house.  I’m hopeful we can get back to normal in the not-too-distant future, but until then, I’m learning to adapt to this new reality.  The outbreak of COVID-19 has presented some unique challenges for all of us, and I’m hopeful that you and your family are doing ok during this time. On March 23 our school made the transition to online learning for at least 2 weeks.  That 2-week period was eventually extended to 3 weeks, and recently we [...]

What’s in Your ADHD Report

Awhile back I wrote a post on the process for getting a psycho-educational report done for your son or daughter.  Simply put it involves three steps:  an intake, assessment, and feedback session.  This is a standard format for most psychologists. However, one question I get quite frequently when I meet with parents is:  How do you determine if my son or daughter has ADHD or a learning disability? This is a great question!  And I often times do not consider that parents may actually want to know the nuts and bolts of the evaluation.  While psychologists and LPAs are free [...]

End of School Year Checklist

The calendar just turned to May, and that means school is in the homestretch.  However, before we start planning long days by the pool or days spent at fun summer camps, there is still a lot of work to do. Many of us still have quite a bit of school work and assignments left.  With final exams coming up for many students, there are still many points left out there to boost your grades.  So as we count down the days to that very last one, here is a checklist to keep you on the right track for academic success. [...]

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