As important as psychometric testing has become in the business world to correctly place people in positions for which they are suited and to help evaluate children nearing the end of their school years to properly select a career path that will be suited to them, it is also becoming an integral part of diagnosing children who may have learning disabilities or behavior concerns.
It has just become the norm to medicate any child that seems to be struggling or shows signs of not conforming to what the educators deem to be normal. This, as far as I am concerned is not the route to follow. We are simply building a nation of zombies who simply operate on manual and go through the motions. Yes, it can’t be denied that these children do tend to yield better results intellectually while on this medication but in many instance it is a quick fix and does nothing to rectify the underlying issues.
Psychometric testing is a means by which an occupation psychologist or therapist can properly assess your child in order to make a proper assessment of whether the child does need medication or whether other factors are at play. The psychometric tests will evaluate the abilities of the child by testing numeracy, literacy and of course logical thinking. Behavior tests and personality tests will be carried out to accurately measure areas where there is a lack of normalcy, for want of a better word. A trained occupational psychologist has the knowledge and insight into the functions of children and will know exactly what areas or warning signs to look out for. Once the tests are completed, the occupational psychologist will score the tests and put together detailed explanation and feedback which is aimed at offering the parent and the child some direction of where to go to next.
Psychometric test is not undertaken alone, it is always followed by one-on-one discussions with the child. The psychologist needs to understand how the child’s mind functions and what thought patterns they use to make judgement. Some of the areas that are uncovered will reveal more than enough of what the psychologist needs to guide him/her towards a reliable assessment.
Personal relationships are an important factor and can influence your child in many ways, ways you would never dream of. The psychologist will ask questions about relationships close to your child and measure the responses and reactions. What the child says, the body language and the facial expressions. Sometimes children may be afraid to say what they feel but other markers are a dead giveaway. Your child’s living situation is also of great importance as well as their situation at school. Your child may be the victim of bullies of which you are unaware and this could have a drastic impact on the performance and behavior of your child. The psychologist will want to know what your child aspires to and what their dreams are. Every child has wonderful dreams for their future and these say so much about your child.
Once the psychometric testing and the personal evaluation have been finalized, the psychologist will carefully assess all the information and make an educated and correct judgement. You may find that your child doesn’t need to be medicated, your child is perfectly fine. Perhaps there is someone at school who has been oppressing them or maybe there have been a few too many arguments at home lately. All these things do happen and yes, your child can be affected. Children are not immune to stress and like any other human, some can cope better than others with a stressful situation.
You may find that your child seems to be doing fine at school but is having behavioral outbursts that are not normal or appropriate. Children learn from what they see. Perhaps your child has someone in particular who is prone to outbursts and they have come to think that is the correct way to behave. Children also often act out as a way of tyring to get attention, maybe you’ve been too busy at work lately and haven’t spent enough quality time with your child. Life is hectic and it is always a scratch and a scramble to make ends meet so don’t beat yourself up about it. Now that you know the problems and their reasons, you can make a concerted effort to rectify the situation. It is all too common in children where the parents have divorced, children act out and play the parents against each other as a means of getting what they want. They try to make you, as the parent, feel guilty and guilt you into giving them their way.
Your child may actually be the one inflicting the harsh words and aggression on another child. They may be doing this as a way of drawing attention away from themselves, away from what they think their shortcomings are and away from what others may find out is happening in their lives. These children simply don’t know how to react or to cope with issues and project them elsewhere.
I am in no way saying that there are no children that need to be medicated, I am simply saying that you should have your child correctly assessed and subjected to psychometric testing in order to get to the root of the problem before simply placing a band aid over it with one drug or another. Remember the problems stay within the child and at some stage they are going to rear their heads again but this time, it may not be a scene with a happy ending.
Choose a psychologist with whom your child feels comfortable and at ease with, someone they can open up to and trust. This is the best help you could ever get for your child and yes, if the psychologist thinks medication will help then that’s the course to follow.