Taking a Test

General Cognitive Evaluation

General cognitive evaluations measure every realm of brain activity to determine how well your brain is functioning. At New York Neuropsychological Services in the Murray Hill neighborhood of Manhattan, Nicole Murray, Psy.D., has extensive experience choosing the exact tests needed, evaluating the results, and translating the results into treatment to improve cognitive deficits.

What is a general cognitive evaluation?

A general cognitive evaluation uses numerous standardized tests to measure the thinking processes in your brain, including your:

  • Intellectual capacity (IQ)
  • Attention and concentration
  • Processing speed
  • Language and communication
  • Visual-spatial abilities
  • Memory
Some patients may also need sensorimotor and psychomotor function testing. Sensorimotor skills refer to receiving sensory input and using it to produce muscle movement. Psychomotor skills are muscle activities you learn to perform, such as writing, throwing a ball, and playing an instrument. If you have problems with cognition, you can’t learn skills, solve problems, retain and recall events, or perform mathematical equations. You may not be able to comprehend what you read.

When might I need a general cognitive evaluation?

There are many times when a general cognitive evaluation may be performed. Cognitive testing is an integral part of diagnosing and determining the best treatment for many types of mental health disorders that are known to have cognitive dysfunction. Children who are diagnosed with developmental disabilities such as autism and ADHD have a cognitive evaluation. Cognitive testing is also essential in patients with dementia and after suffering a head injury, even if it’s a mild concussion. A general cognitive evaluation may also be required for patients applying for disability from the Social Security Administration.

What should I expect during a general cognitive evaluation?

A general cognitive evaluation is different from a clinical evaluation in which Dr. Murray talks with you about your symptoms or you complete questionnaires rating your emotions and behaviors. Cognitive evaluations use standardized tests that measure your abilities. Much like a test you would take at school, cognitive tests pose questions and you provide answers. Your test may be done using a computer or with a pencil and paper. There are many possible tests used during a general cognitive evaluation. The length of your evaluation depends on the areas of cognition being measured and the number of tests you need to take. For example, an IQ test may take an hour or longer, while other tests only take 10-15 minutes. If you have questions about general cognitive evaluations or you’d like to schedule an appointment, call New York Neuropsychological Services or use the online booking tool.