An assessment is the first step to understanding if your child’s speech, language and social-communication are on track, simply slower to develop, or showing signs that indicate greater difficulty. Assessments are offered for children who exhibit a wide range of communication challenges or language learning delays. They are conducted within a comfortable, playful environment that includes parents and family members.

During an assessment, your child’s communication is examined and compared to skills that are expected within a certain window of development. The clinician’s deep knowledge of communication development and disorder is further informed by your intimate knowledge of your child’s personality, abilities, and motivations in order to determine what is impacting your child’s communication development.

Young children communicate most in relationship to familiar people about things that are pleasurable and meaningful to them. Cornerstone Speech and Language employs naturalistic, play-based methods to assess your child’s abilities. If needed, or as appropriate for young school-aged children, additional standardized tests or analysis may be used.

By the end of your assessment, you will take home an understanding about your child’s communication strengths and weaknesses, a sense of your child’s developmental level in all domains of communication, as well as specific suggestions and strategies for immediate use to improve your child’s communication. We work together with you to develop recommendations and a plan of action to target underlying challenges, expand skills and abilities, and maximize your child’s communication development. A follow-up written report is included as part of your assessment.

Cornerstone Speech and Language offers three levels of assessment to suit your needs. We work with you during an initial phone interview to help you decide which level of assessment matches your needs.

1. Consult

A consult takes place over one-hour and may be appropriate for children under 15 months of age, for children who are currently participating in speech-language treatment, or for families seeking key strategies to use at home. A short, bullet-point report is provided with this level of evaluation.

2. Assessment

A standard assessment takes place over 2 hours and is appropriate for children who have more extensive communication needs or who have not had an assessment within the past year. Assessment procedures include a parent interview, a review of records, parent-child observation, play-based diagnostic procedures, and limited standardized testing. This assessment includes a written report that may vary in length, but is typically between 5-7 pages.

3. Deep Assessment

A deep assessment is conducted over the span of 2-3 weeks, pending scheduling availability. This level of assessment is appropriate for young elementary-school age children who require a detailed examination of their language profile to determine appropriate academic placement, classroom supports or modifications, teaching strategies, and support services to maximize learning potential. It includes 4 hours of combined play-based diagnostics and standardized testing, extensive document and current service review, 1 hour of school observation, and phone consultations with current providers if appropriate. This assessment includes a written report that may vary in length, but is typically between 10-20 pages.