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Neuro​psychology Testing

Neuropsychology (ne​uropsych) testing evaluates a patient’s cognitive strengths and weaknesses, including:

  • ​Attention
  • Memory
  • Language
  • Visual reasoning
  • Thinking speed

A person’s mood and emotional functioning can also impact how the person thinks and completes activities. Therefore, our neuropsychology evaluations also evaluate how a person is feeling and managing any current stress.


Conditions We Treat

We evaluate children and teenagers with a variety of medical and neurodevelopmental problems, including:

Purpose After a Concussion

  • After a concussion, brain cells temporarily don’t work properly. Some patients quickly recover from concussions and others take more time.
  • If your doctor suggests neuropsych testing, it might mean that your child is taking longer than expected to recover, or the recovery period is not progressing as anticipated. Neuropsych test results can help your doctor determine if your child needs additional supports (e.g., to manage any difficulties at school, to cope with stress after the concussion, etc.). The neuropsych test results can also be useful to determine if your child has any cognitive, emotional, or behavioral problems that are impacting your child’s recovery.
  • Neuropsych test results will not determine the patients’ medications and aren’t used in isolation — the testing is just one component of the patient’s entire clinical picture.

Purpose for Children With Heart Disease

  • Research shows that high-risk neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) graduates and children with complex heart conditions are at risk for having neurodevelopmental issues. As treatments for congenital heart disease have advanced, research has begun to show that many children with complex heart conditions experience mild to severe developmental problems.
  • Results of neuropsychology testing help determine your child’s pattern of cognitive strengths and weaknesses and identify the presence of neurobehavioral syndromes (e.g., ADHD, learning disorders) and/or psychological disorders (e.g., anxiety, depression). Neuropsychology evaluations can also provide individualized recommendations for educational and/or psychological interventions to ensure that your child has appropriate supports and services.
  • Children with congenital heart disease are referred to our neuropsychology service through their visits at Lurie Children's NICU-Cardiac Neurodevelopmental Program (NCNP).

Purpose for Children With Epilepsy

  • Children with epilepsy may experience difficulties with cognitive abilities such as attention, processing speed, and memory, and these difficulties can affect their everyday functioning. Medications necessary to treat epilepsy can also affect their cognitive skills.
  • A neuropsychological evaluation determines a child's cognitive strengths and weaknesses. Its results can help schools and therapists enhance a child's learning, and they can also be used to help monitor a child's status over time.
  • Neuropsychological evaluation results can also be used to assist in planning for epilepsy surgery, and to monitor a child's functioning after surgery.

Testing Time

  • Neuropsychology evaluations are comprehensive and typically occur over 3-5 hours in a single testing day. The testing activities typically start in the morning and end in the afternoon.
  • Throughout the testing day, your child will be able to takes breaks as needed (e.g., to drink water, eat snacks, play games, use bathroom, visit a caregiver in the waiting area).
  • There is also a 1-hour lunch break for your child.
  • The neuropsychology examiners will discuss with you any additional supports or accommodations that your child needs to complete the testing activities.

Meet Our Neuropsychology Team

Clayton D. Hinkle, PhD

Clayton D. Hinkle, PhD, ABPP

Pediatric Neuropsychologist, The Pritzker Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Health

Lizabeth L. Jordan

Lizabeth L. Jordan, PhD

Pediatric Neuropsychologist, The Pritzker Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Health

Stephanie K. Powell

Stephanie K. Powell, PhD, ABPP

Pediatric Neuropsychologist, The Pritzker Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Health

Megan N. Scott

Megan N. Scott, PhD

Pediatric Neuropsychologist, The Pritzker Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Health

Frank A. Zelko

Frank A. Zelko, PhD

Pediatric Neuropsychologist, The Pritzker Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Health