Category Archives: Twice-exceptionality

Gifted Education Awareness Month: Services at the ACC – Educational Assessment

In Iowa, October has been declared Gifted Education Awareness Month! To celebrate, we’ll be revisiting some of your favorite posts from the blog all month long. We get a variety of questions about what our Assessment and Counseling Clinic does and how to know if a particular service is right for a given child. Today, we’re focusing on educational assessments.


Services at the ACC: Educational Assessment

Dr. Alissa Doobay, Licensed Psychologist, Supervisor of Psychological Services
Dr. Alissa Doobay, Licensed Psychologist, Supervisor of Psychological Services

Individualized educational assessments are conducted to assist with academic planning.  They involve individual assessment of intellectual and academic skills, including above-level skills, as well as a screening of psychosocial factors that may be relevant in academic planning decisions.  These assessments are not diagnostic in nature; therefore, they cannot be submitted to insurance for reimbursement.

Following the assessment, parents are provided with a comprehensive report detailing the test results and our recommendations. The cost depends on the number of hours spent, but a typical educational assessment includes approximately 6 hours of testing and costs $730.

Some initial reasons to consider an individualized educational assessment include:

  • You’re considering whole grade acceleration and would like to get the bulk of the information needed all at once.
  • The student is in 3rd grade or younger, and therefore too young for most other assessments.
  • The student has behavioral/cognitive factors that result in individualized assessment being more accurate than group-administered (e.g., 2e students who don’t “test” as well as expected based on knowledge).

We also offer twice-exceptional assessments, which include intellectual and academic testing in addition to a diagnostic assessment to determine whether the child meets criteria for a particular psychological diagnosis (e.g., Autism Spectrum Disorder, ADHD, Specific Learning Disorder, anxiety or depression, etc.). These evaluations are conducted by a licensed psychologist and may be submitted to insurance depending on your insurance provider. There is a currently a waitlist for twice-exceptional assessments.

Could an educational assessment help your child?  You can request an appointment through our online intake form.

Originally posted on January 12, 2017

Summer Social Skills Group for High School Students

The Belin-Blank Center Assessment and Counseling Clinic is offering a social skills group for high ability students who are entering 9th – 12th grade who demonstrate strong intellectual or academic abilities and social skills challenges (possibly due to ASD, anxiety, ADHD, etc.). The goal of the group is to facilitate development of improved social skills and peer relationships through natural social interaction and video modeling techniques.

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There will be 6 group sessions, each 50 minutes in length, conducted on the 5th floor of Blank Honors Center. The group will meet weekly on Tuesdays at 3:30 p.m. beginning on Tuesday, July 10, and running through Tuesday, August 14.  The fee is $45 per session, and we do accept BC/BS insurance. We will accept up to 6 students for our summer session.

If you have any questions or would like for your child to participate in this group, please contact alissa-doobay@uiowa.edu.

New Network for Parents of Twice-Exceptional Students

A new group has been organized in the I-380 corridor to provide an informational support network to parents and educators of twice-exceptional (2e) learners.

Understood.org has partnered with Amanda Freese to offer monthly meetings that provide information about strength-based advocacy for 2e individuals as well as resources and services related to enrichment academic opportunities and learning and attention challenges.

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The group meets on the third Tuesday of each month from 6:30-8:00 p.m. Odd monthly meetings are held in North Liberty and even monthly meetings are held in Cedar Rapids. The April meeting, “Building a 504/IEP Success Binder Workshop,” is scheduled for Tuesday, April 17 at Grant Wood AEA.

In addition to the monthly meetings, a Facebook group has been established to help parents and educators connect and collaborate. To join the Facebook group, please visit https://www.facebook.com/groups/487101151673454/.

Further questions can be directed to Amanda Freese at Amanda_Freese@hotmail.com.

Kids with ADHD—We Would Like to Hear About You!

Are you a middle schooler (or parent of one) who has ADHD? We are interested in learning more about kids like you and their friendships, and you have the chance to earn an Amazon gift card. Keep reading to learn more!

Interested individuals are invited to participate in a research study investigating the perceptions of friendship quality amongst middle school students. Information you provide through your participation can help us gain insight that may one day help students like you. This information may help researchers better understand how students with ADHD view their friendships compared to their peers, which may later help clinicians develop and modify social skills interventions and other supports for students.

We are looking for students in Grades 6, 7, or 8 (or the equivalent) who have completed standardized assessments (e.g., Iowa Assessments, Wechsler Assessments, CogAT, etc.) and would be interested in participating in our study. You will also be asked to provide demographic information about your child along with documentation of their cognitive ability (such as Iowa Assessment scores from school) and ADHD diagnosis. To participate, students will complete an online survey. The survey should take no more than 10-15 minutes to complete.

Participants who complete the study will be entered in a drawing to win a $10 Amazon gift card.

If you are interested in learning more, please contact the Principal Investigator (Staci Fosenburg, staci-fosenburg@uiowa.edu) for more information about how to participate in this study. Thank you!

Upcoming Professional Development

The Belin-Blank Center is offering a learning opportunity that many of you won’t want to miss!  From December 28 – January 13, educators (or parents) can enroll in EDTL:4096:0WKA Topics: Nurturing the Potential of Twice-Exceptional Students: Practical Guidelines for Understanding and Supporting 2e Students

The commonly-used term for gifted students who also have disabilities is “twice-exceptional,” a simple phrase that does little to suggest the complexities in meeting the needs of twice-exceptional (2e) learners.  Participants will explore ways of better understanding and meeting the needs of 2e students, including developing academic strengths and facilitating social-emotional growth.

Dr. Alissa Doobay, the Supervisor of Psychological Services at the Center’s Assessment and Counseling Clinic, will facilitate this class, giving participants an excellent opportunity to focus on the twice-exceptional learners important to them.

Professional Learning in Spring Semester 2017

The Spring 2017 schedule is available for you to review!  There is a full schedule of opportunities, including one-, two-, and three-semester hour classes.  Coursework is available in all of the strands required for the State of Iowa Talented and Gifted Endorsement.

Learn more about registration as a Continuing Education student at the University of Iowa.  We welcome educators earning the endorsement, as well as anyone interested in the topics explored in our coursework.

Contact Dr. Laurie Croft with questions.

Did You Miss Our 2E Webinar?

Feb16_webinarIt’s not too late to see one of our most popular webinars yet. Nurturing the Potential of Twice-Exceptional Students: Practical Guidelines for Understanding and Supporting 2e Students is available to order on DVD.

 

Information on relevant legislation, research, clinical findings, and recommendations/resources regarding twice-exceptional students was discussed. Specific information was provided about high-ability students with ADHD, learning disorders, autism spectrum disorder, and anxiety/depression.  DVDs of the webinar can be used by schools, area education agencies, psychologists, and parents to gain additional information about the needs of twice-exceptional students.

We also have a free online publication, The Paradox of Twice-Exceptionality: Packet of Information for Professionals (PIP-2), that provides recommendations for addressing the classroom needs of twice-exceptional students.

How Can You Support Your Twice-Exceptional Kids?

On Thursday, February 4 from 4:00 – 5:30 p.m., the Belin-Blank Center will host a spring webinar focused on Nurturing the Potential of Twice-Exceptional Students: Practical Guidelines for Understanding and Supporting 2e Students. Presenters include

  • Alissa Doobay, Supervisor, Psychological Services, Assessment and Counseling Clinic, Belin-Blank Center
  • Joy Goins, Staff Psychologist, Assessment and Counseling Clinic, Belin-Blank Center
  • Megan Foley-Nicpon, Associate Director for Research and Clinic, Belin-Blank Center, and Associate Professor, Counseling Psychology Program
  • Susan Assouline, Director, Belin-Blank Center, and Myron & Jacqueline Blank Professor of Gifted Education

The commonly used term for gifted students who also have disabilities is “twice-exceptional,” a simple phrase that does little to suggest the complexities in meeting the needs of twice-exceptional (2e) learners. Participants will explore ways of better understanding and meeting the needs of 2e students, including developing academic strengths and facilitating social-emotional growth.

For those who are interested in earning academic credit, an optional one-semester-hour online workshop will build on the webinar. The academic credit (PSQF:5194:WKA), facilitated by Dr. Doobay and Dr. Laurie Croft, Associate Director for Professional Development and Clinical Associate Professor of Gifted Education, will fulfill an hour in the Psychology Strand required for the State of Iowa Talented and Gifted Endorsement. The course will extend participants’ understandings of twice-exceptionality, as well as ways to better meet the needs of 2e students, and the content will complement the summer online workshop offered by Dr. Foley-Nicpon, Cognitive and Affective Needs of Gifted Students (PSQF:4126). Those who enroll for academic credit will receive a 50% tuition scholarship off the cost of graduate tuition.

For more information, or to register, visit belinblank.org/webinar.