What Program Graduates Say

What I have gained through this course:
  • I am more attentive to the background information of the child, especially when there is birth trauma, head injury, etc. I immediately associate that area of the brain and the possible implications.
  • My evaluations have become more comprehensive, especially for a school-based diagnosis of ADHD. I rely less on the checklists and more on tests of attention/memory/executive functioning. My battery of tests is actually longer but I am more confident in my decisions.
  • My interpretation of the data has become more sophisticated and I now have the words to explain processing deficits better. My information to the team and to parents seems more precise and makes more sense in light of brain functioning.
  • I have been given the opportunity to become familiar with more tests that I will definitely use. Being able to discuss cases with other professionals has been extremely helpful. Seeing the way others write up their evaluations and how different school districts handle special education students has also been invaluable.

I will never approach a referral in the same way again. I have looked back at my old evaluations and wondered how I managed with less information. But similar to the words of Maya Angelou, 'You do the best that you know. When you know better, you do better'. More school psychologists should take advantage of the opportunity to enhance their knowledge in this area, to supplement their training and practice.'

'... this course has reshaped my thinking on how I work with children in my school. I have gained knowledge and confidence in my assessment practices and can share my results more effectively. I have learned how to use new assessment tools and have obtained new resources to utilize. I make keener observations of students and I pay much more attention to the details in the developmental history. I have learned how to organize and synthesize a vast amount of data regarding a student. I have learned how to write recommendations that are more specific and practical in addressing individual student needs. I have a greater understanding of how the brain works and how it relates to behavior. On top of all that, I have made some good friends with whom I can continue to network when the difficult cases arise.'

'One of my former professors drew a comparison between added knowledge and peeling a banana. I now have more ways of peeling that banana. Where once I struggled with proving the presence of a 'visual processing disorder' despite a high (WISC-III) Block Design score, I can now 'split the peel' and discuss visuoconstructive vs. visual-spatial skills or visual-motor integration.
I have new ways of observing and new test instruments which allow me to provide more detailed and individualized recommendations. I can look at executive functions vs. IQ and speculate intelligently about the interplay. I am more able to highlight the relationship between test results and what parents see in their children (ie. poor planning or organization) because of my gradually increasing understanding of what constitutes executive functions.
Having at my fingertips the references to study underlying brain structures and interplay gives me the soil from whence comes the banana tree! I mean that I now have a construct (neuropsychology and brain-behavior relationships) which funds basic understanding of learning disabilities and the many difficulties we're asked to evaluate (ie. ADD/H, brain injuries, autism, etc.) I would say that I have most definitely and absolutely increased my denitrify connections.'