A psychological assessment, or evaluation, helps people (1) explore their psychology in a structured and empirically based way, and (2) learn what kind of treatment will be best for any difficulties or needs. I have completed such evaluations for other clinicians who ask for support in understanding a person more precisely. In such cases, a person's treatment can then be more custom-tailored. My training as a psychologist allows me to use specialized psychological tools, like personality tests, that are backed by substantial research. The asssesment always considers aspects of diversity and culture, which are important in understanding any person's identity.
Although similar in many ways to the assessment described above, Forensic Assessments help a court system or attorney understand a person's psychology and treatment needs. Forensic Assessment can also help answer more strictly legal questions that invole mental health (like Competency to Stand Trial, Mental Capacity, and other issues).
Since 2006, I have worked extensively with court systems to evaluate people's mental health. This has included assessment of a person's risk for violence, suicide, and homicide. Whether for those reasons or others, I have worked with thousands of individuals involved with court systems so that they can get the help they need to improve their lives.
Both types of assessment triage a person's psychology and any needs, suggest resources that can help, and recommend particular solutions for the person to get the support they need. If the court is involved, I have often consulted with attorneys, judges, and other system participants who can help implement the services a person needs.
Both assessment types, in my opinion, should make sure to address more than just a person's difficulties. Everyone has strengths, and a person's resililence is important to consider. As unique individuals, we function better and heal more happily when we can be helped to see how what we already have - our strengths - can help us in ways we might not have thought about.
Each person's assessment is different, based on a person's needs and their unique psychology. If you have questions about tests I might use, or how your own assessment might occur, please get in touch. I'd be happy to talk.
Copyright © 2022 Daniel J Potoczniak, PhD, ABPP - All Rights Reserved.