When a child or adult struggles with learning, socialization, attention, or other crucial aspects of human behavior, it can cause distress and angst for the individual, his or her family relationships, school or community performance, and overall well-being and functioning. One way to alleviate such distress is to seek professional guidance and greater understanding of the problem, its impact, and relevant strategies to intervene so that optimal functioning can be established or restored. As a Licensed Psychologist and a Nationally Certified School Psychologist, I am a Sherlock Holmes-style psychological detective who works collaboratively with my clients to achieve this understanding and balance through the specialization of psychological and educational assessment. Helping a child or adult establish better understanding of his or her concerns and needs, and identifying subsequent applicable strategies for intervention, is a challenging yet tremendously rewarding career. Being a “psychological detective” is a job that I cherish and love!
In order to become educated in the art and practice of psychological assessment, I earned masters and doctoral degrees from North Carolina State University in the area of School Psychology, with a minor in Curriculum and Instruction. In addition, I hold a master’s degree in Counseling from the University of Georgia and a bachelor’s of science degree in Psychology (with a minor in Family and Child Development) from Virginia Tech (Go, Hokies!). I am a member of the American Psychological Association and the National Association of School Psychologists. I have over 20 years of experience working with children, adolescents, adults, and families in a variety of settings, including community agency; university clinic; public, private, and charter schools; non-profits; and private practice settings. With ten years of experience specifically dedicated to working as a school psychologist in the public school setting, I have considerable expertise and knowledge of the special education process and services, such as 504 Plans and Individual Education Plans. In addition to working as a school psychologist, I also worked in private practice contracting with public school districts across the country to conduct Individual Educational Evaluations. My background in the public schools is a tremendous asset when I work with children and their families as we collaborate with teachers and schools to achieve optimal home-school understanding and functioning.
My clinical interests include the assessment of autism spectrum disorders, attention deficit disorders, and learning differences; the development of home-school intervention strategies; and coaching for executive functioning and study skill techniques. Utilizing a neurodevelopmental approach, I operate from a strengths-based perspective. By leveraging my client’s areas of strength, I give great effort to provide useful, research-based interventions, recommendations, and strategies that are practical and targeted for my client’s specific needs. I especially enjoy working with military families, as I am married to a Special Forces Army Officer, with whom I have two elementary-aged children. We live in Pinehurst, North Carolina.
I am now a provider for several major insurance companies, including Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Carolina, Cigna, Aetna, and Tricare. With the exception of Tricare policies, I typically do not file claims for services; rather, your family pays for all services at the conclusion of the assessment process, and I will provide you a very detailed financial Invoice with necessary CPT codes so that you can file an insurance claim with your insurance company for reimbursement for services. A $500 deposit may be necessary at the start of assessment. It is always wise to contact your insurance carrier prior to the assessment for more information about what services that are considered “covered” versus what are not covered services. For instance, many insurance carriers will reimburse for assessment services for Autism Spectrum Disorders and Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorders; however, they frequently may not cover assessment for Learning Disability assessments, claiming they are not a “medical necessity” and should be a service covered by your local public school.
Some of the assessments that I enjoy performing and have experience with are:
- Learning Differences/Dyslexia
- Autism Spectrum Differences (ASD)
- Giftedness/Advanced Placement/Early Entrance to Kindergarten
- Educational and Academic Achievement
- Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)
- Learning and Memory
- Visual and Motor Processing
- Behavioral, Emotional, and Social Functioning
- SAT, Law and Medical School Admission Accommodation Testing
- SSI Disability Testing
- Other Neurodevelopmental Processes, as needed