What is Early Childhood Assessment?
What is the difference between standardized testing and clinical assessment?
Testing looks at what an infant or toddler can and cannot do using a standardized set of questions, procedures and methods. The results of this inquiry can be quantified. This information helps parents and clinicians understand how a child compares to a population of children who are developing normally. This "snapshot" of objectively measured skills points to developmental domains that need intervention.
A clinical assessment views all aspects of a young child's emotional, cognitive, and social abilities within the context of his/her primary relationships. Through this lens, parents and professionals see how well an infant is actually functioning in the real world (versus being compared to statistical norms). This type of qualitative evaluation provides a systematic way of looking at both structured and unstructured exchanges between parent and child in a variety of settings and situations.
BAPTA's clinicians skillfully use both standardized testing and clinical assessment, and choose the most appropriate methods to answer the referral question.
What is early childhood assessment and why is it important?
The relationship between parent and infant is the primary force in shaping the child's future. By assessing how parent and child actually interact we gain important information about how to improve the quality of this all-important first partnership. A complete assessment allows clinicians to look at many different aspects of a child's growth including:
When should I consider referring families for an assessment?
Referrals can be made in the following circumstances:
To Create A Healthy Start
How does early childhood assessment help?
A developmental assessment helps parents to learn about themselves and their child. Parents are given a "map" that helps them understand their child's unique temperament, developmental strengths and needs, sensory responsiveness, and preferred ways of playing and interacting. This tool to helps them to read and understand their baby's non-verbal signals and to respond appropriately.
Parents will gain self-knowledge. They begin to develop insights into old patterns of automatic responses that are left over from their own childhood, what Dr. Selma Fraiberg called "the ghosts in the nursery". This in-depth developmental "blueprint" is an important first step in giving a child the best possible start in life.
In what other settings is parent-infant assessment helpful?
What about cost?
Most insurance policies cover psychological assessment if medical necessity is established. BAPTA works closely with insurance companies to help parents obtain reimbursement. In the long run, timely assessments that generate early and accurate diagnoses of developmental problems not only create the best prognosis, but save untold future expenses.
What are the long-range benefits of parent-infant assessment?
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