Clinical Neuropsychology is a branch of psychology that is involved in understanding relationships between the brain and behaviour.
People may be referred to a Clinical Neuropsychologist if their thinking skills, behaviour, or emotional functioning have been impacted by:
- Brain damage
- Brain disease
- Mental illness
- Or other conditions, such as ADHD or learning difficulties.
What is a neuropsychological assessment?
This is an assessment of a person’s thinking skills. It provides a measure of their cognitive strengths and weaknesses, and details how this may impact their day-to-day functioning.
What does a neuropsychological assessment involve?
The assessment comprises three parts – an interview, cognitive testing, and the provision of a comprehensive, written report.
During the interview you will be asked questions about your history, your thinking skills, and your ability to perform daily tasks. If you have written school reports, work performance reviews, or relevant medical records, it would be useful to bring these with you to your appointment.
The cognitive assessment involves performing a variety of tasks which you will answer verbally, or using a pencil and paper. Many people find the materials to be engaging. We only use well-established tasks with sound psychometric properties, meaning the tasks are reliable and valid measures of cognitive performance. Some of the types of thinking skills that may be assessed include:
- Information processing speed
- Working memory
- Visuospatial and perceptual skills
- Executive functions (e.g., planning, goal-directed behaviour)
The face-to-face interview and cognitive assessment typically take 3 – 4 hours.
Following your appointment, your scores will be compared to other people your age, and a profile of your strengths and weaknesses will be interpreted in relation to your background and current circumstances. This will be detailed in a comprehensive written report.
When will my results be available?
A written report detailing your results will be available approximately three to four weeks after your appointment. You can arrange a separate feedback session, to go through your results in-person, if desired.
How should I prepare for a neuropsychological assessment?
You do not need to do any study or practice before your appointment. Make sure you have copies of any relevant records to bring with you, and try to get a good night’s sleep before your appointment.
Who can perform a neuropsychological assessment?
Only psychologists who have completed postgraduate training in Clinical Neuropsychology can provide neuropsychological assessments. This includes Clinical Neuropsychologists, who are endorsed by AHPRA, as well as Clinical Neuropsychology Registrars, who work under the supervision of a Senior Clinical Neuropsychologist.
Do I need a referral to access neuropsychological assessments?
A referral from your doctor is preferred, though not essential.
Note: At this time, the cost of a neuropsychological assessment is not covered by Medicare.
You can call us on 02 8924 5406 to discuss further and make an initial appointment.