Psychoeducational Assessment of Children with Special Learning Needs

SPED 201
Psychoeducational Assessment of Children with Special Learning Needs


Excelsa F. Buan

Just like any other assessment procedure, certain questions need to be answered before the assessment of special children could be initiated. In assessing children with special needs, one of the questions that need to be addressed to create a basis for an assessment model is WHY ASSESS? Any person who is tasked to assess should be aware why the assessment procedure is being conducted. Justification for the role of each instrument in selection, diagnosis, classification, and decision making should be arrived at before any test could be administered.

* Initial Identification (Screening)
* Determination and Evaluation of Teaching Programs and Strategies (Prereferral Assessment) * Determination of Current Performance Level and Educational Need * Decisions about Eligibility

* Development of the Individualized Education Program
* Decisions about Program Placement


Emotional Disturbance is extremely difficult to define. There is little agreement about what term to use to refer to individuals with emotional and behavioral problems (emotional disturbance, emotional disorder, emotional/behavioral disorder) Emotional Disturbance is an inability to learn that cannot be explained by intellectual, sensory, or health factors. It is an inability to build or maintain satisfactory interpersonal relationships with peers and teachers. Also manifests inappropriate types of behavior or feelings under normal circumstances. There is a general pervasive mood of unhappiness or depression and a tendency to develop physical symptoms, pains, or fear associated with persona; or school problems. The term includes children who are schizophrenic. The term does not include children who are socially maladjusted unless it is determined that they are seriously emotionally disturbed.

Sample assessment profile : emotional or behavior problems
Intelligence : Average or low average performance
Achievement : Variable or low performance
Adaptive Behavior : Variable performance
Emotional and Behavioral Characteristics : Low performance

The most recent definition eliminates the term “gifted” and substitutes the term “ outstanding talent,” partly to emphasize that these students should not just be those with high IQ’s.

Sample assessment profile : gifted and talented
Intelligence : High performance
Achievement : High or Variable performance
Adaptive Behavior : Average or high performance
Emotional and Behavioral Characteristics : Average or variable performance

Test-profile matrix

A child shall not be determined to be a child with a disability if the determinant factor for such determination is – Lack of appropriate instruction in reading, including in the essential components of reading instruction Lack of instruction in math

Limited English proficiency


a. Specific learning disabilities
A disorder in one or more of the basic psychological processes involved in understanding or in using language, spoken or written, which disorder may manifest itself in imperfect ability to listen, think, speak, read, write, spell, or do mathematical calculations.

b. Disorders included
Perceptual disabilities
Minimal dysfunction
Developmental aphasia

c. Disorders NOT included
Such Terms does not include a learning
problem that is primarily a result of:

Visual Disabilities
Hearing Disabilities
Motor Disabilities
Mental Retardation
Environmental, Cultural, or Economic Disadvantage

SAMPLE ASSESSMENT PROFILE: learning disability (LD)
Intelligence : Average or low average performance
Achievement: Variable or low average performance
Adaptive behavior: Average or...
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