Access Type

Open Access Dissertation

Date of Award

January 2011

Degree Type


Degree Name




First Advisor

Douglas Barnett


For the majority of children with significant behavioral or academic problems at school, the first course of action is to participate in a psychological evaluation. Upon completion of the evaluation parents receive an integrative report containing numerous recommendations for how to improve the well-being of their child. 51 child clients who

were referred and completed a comprehensive assessment for behavioral or academic problems were recruited for this study. A year or more after the evaluations were completed, parents of the children were asked about each written report recommendation, whether or not it was followed, and reasons for non-adherence. Expressed Emotion and

reaction to diagnosis were also coded for each parent.

Overall it seems that children either improve, or at the very least do not get worse following a psychological assessment. Additionally, the present study found that children with higher IQs improve more than those with lower IQ. Findings indicate parents are relatively adherent to report recommendations, but adherence is not linked to Expressed

Emotion or diagnosis resolution. It does seem, however, that parent's high in Expressed Emotion are more likely to be unresolved regarding diagnosis This study served as an informative preliminary study that can help guide future research into the impact of psychological evaluations and the importance of parent characteristics, including adherence to report recommendations.

Included in

Psychology Commons