Psychological Assessment

Psychological Assesment

Often, getting effective help with a mental health issue first requires a clear and accurate understanding of the nature of a person’s difficulties.  Human beings are complex, and each person’s journey is unique. That’s why Dr. Scott Nelson of South Coast Family Services offers comprehensive psychological testing and assessment services.  Psychological testing can be extremely valuable in helping to answer questions about human behavior and mental processes that have otherwise proven uncertain or difficult to explain. Dr. Nelson’s passion is for providing the diagnostic clarity that paves the way toward successful treatment and intervention.

When the reasons for a person’s struggles at home, at work or in school are uncertain, when previous treatment approaches have been unsuccessful, or when clients simply need clear answers about the nature of a problem, Dr. Nelson is the caring professional to whom clients and colleagues can turn to conduct an in-depth assessment and illuminate the truth of the situation.

Serving children, adolescents, and adults of all ages, Dr. Nelson performs comprehensive and evidence-based psychological evaluations for a wide range of presenting issues.  These often include (but are not limited to): Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), Autistic Spectrum Disorder and other developmental delays, learning disorders or academic difficulties, mood disorders including depressive, anxiety, and bipolar conditions, disruptive behavioral patterns, trauma, memory loss, cognitive functioning, dementia, and personality functioning.  Results from the assessment can then be used to inform decisions about treatment, academic accommodations or placement, strategies for positive change, or referral to other services as needed. 

How Psychological Assessment Works

Assessment usually begins with a comprehensive interview. Dr. Nelson will work with clients and caregivers to identify and clarify the issues of concern, gather background information on the individual’s history, symptoms, strengths, impairments, and relevant psychosocial factors, and conduct observations.  Administration of testing procedures then follows, and often can be completed in one day. Dr. Nelson will then interpret the test results, integrate them with observations and interview material, and create a detailed written report summarizing the findings and offering recommendations. Because a psychological assessment is only as useful as the recommendations that emerge from the findings.

Dr. Nelson ensures that each examinee comes away from the assessment process with specific, personalized, and evidence-based recommendations designed to address the client’s concerns from clinical, medical, educational, and psychosocial perspectives. Dr. Nelson’s ultimate goal is not merely to label or diagnose an individual, but rather, to identify the correct interventions that are most likely to help that individual achieve his or her goals for growth and change.