Psychological assessment, also referred to as psychological testing, encompasses a wide range of processes to evaluate a person’s functioning at the present time. There are different types of psychological assessment, applying to different aspects of the individual’s functioning. These varying types may cover one or more of the following domains:
An assessment or evaluation usually consists of several component parts – interviews as well as the use of standardized measurements (standardized means that everyone is given the test in the same way). Assessments are tailored to the individual and the need. The purpose of the assessment determines which measures and questions are appropriate to achieve that goal.
Why is psychological testing important?
Psychological assessments are used to diagnose mental health conditions or mental functioning. A comprehensive assessment provides a more complete understanding of the individual’s functioning, including both strengths and weaknesses. In addition, the assessment can help identify the causes of the person’s symptoms and can assist with planning effective treatment. As treatment continues, assessments can be used to measure progress and suggest improvements in treatment. Having an accurate diagnosis and treatment plan can provide assurance to everyone – both the client and supportive others – that treatment is on the right track and progressing effectively.