When a student is struggling in school, there are different types of evaluations that can be sought to understand and address his/her needs, which may be under the labels of psychoeducational evaluations, psychological evaluations, educational evaluations, or neuropsychological evaluations. Dr. McLane’s background both in clinical psychology and pediatric/adolescent neuropsychology allows him to conduct all of these types of assessments.

Dr. McLane assesses children, adolescents, and young adults who have been mostly healthy but are struggling in some aspect of their lives, such as a third grader who has reading or attention problems. However, Dr. McLane also evaluates patients who have known medical problems, such as spina bifida, brain tumors, or epilepsy, that affect their learning, behavior, and/or relationships.

Dr. McLane enjoys collaborating with parents, teachers, and other professionals involved in the student’s care to address the child’s unique needs. Dr. McLane conducts all aspects of the evaluation himself – from gathering historical information from parents and teachers, to testing your child, and to writing a detailed report.

Because there can be many reasons for a child’s difficulties, Dr. McLane can conduct thorough evaluations, when necessary, to reduce the chance of overlooking an important factor that affects your child. For instance, when there is concern a child cannot focus attention, several factors need to be considered before arriving at a diagnosis of ADHD or ADD. While evaluations that are narrow in scope can identify certain problems accurately, they sometimes do not provide clinically useful information if enough factors have not been considered. Worse yet, narrow-scope evaluations can lead to misdiagnosis. Arriving at an accurate diagnosis is essential in order to develop treatment plans that will likely benefit your child as well as reduce the time and money you spend on unnecessary evaluations and/or interventions. Dr. McLane uses information gathered from you to hand select the most relevant and appropriate parent and teacher questionnaires as well as individual tests for your child to answer your questions.

At your request, Dr. McLane will observe your child at school before the testing appointment and/or attend school meetings with teachers or school administrators to formulate an individual educational plan for your child.

Common referral questions include assessing a child, teenager, or young adult for:

  • Developmental Delays
  • Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD or ADD)
  • Executive Function deficits
  • Learning Disorders (Dyslexia, Math Disorder, Disorder of Written Expression)
  • Communication Disorders affecting receptive and/or expressive language
  • Behavioral and/or Interpersonal problems with same-aged peers and/or adults
  • Mood Disorders (Depression, Bipolar)
  • Anxiety Disorders (Separation Anxiety, Social Anxiety, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder)
  • Autism Spectrum or Pervasive Developmental Disorders (Asperger’s, Autism)

The three domains assessed as part of a neuropsychological evaluation may include:

1. Cognitive

  • Intelligence
  • Oral Language
  • Visual-Spatial Skills
  • Fine Motor Coordination
  • Learning and Memory
  • Selective, Sustained, and Divided Visual and Auditory Attention
  • Executive Functioning (Planning, Organization, Inhibition, Flexibility, etc.)
  • Social Perception

2. Academic Achievement

  • Reading: Sight word reading, phonics, reading fluency, reading comprehension
  • Written Language: Spelling, written expression, writing fluency
  • Mathematics: Computation, math reasoning, math fluency

3. Psychological Adjustment

  • Behavioral functioning
  • Social skills
  • Emotional adjustment
  • Attitude to school and motivation