Evaluation for Learning Disabilities

February 18, 2021

Learning Disabilities and Standardized Testing Accommodations Fourteen percent of k-12 students in the US have an identified learning disability. More than half of those students receive academic accommodations within their school district. These rates are similar in higher education as 11% of college students self-identify with a learning disability, but very few disclose this information to their university. Only 17% of college students with learning......
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ASD: Psychological Assessment

April 28, 2020

Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) has become one of the fastest-growing developmental disorders among children (Tincani, Crozier, & Alazetta, 2006). Prevalence rates have consistently increased over the years, and it is now predicted that 1 in 59 children have ASD (CDC, 2019). ASD is characterized by a lack of social communication, restricted behaviors, and difficulty understanding social cues (APA, 2013). The goal of this blog post......
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What is Mental Health Diversion (PC 1001.36)?

April 15, 2020

Mental health diversion is a pretrial program in California that diverts individuals from the criminal justice system into mental health treatment, in lieu facing a criminal trial or conviction. This is an alternative created for individuals where mental health played a significant part in their alleged crime. California Penal Code 1001.36 Mental Health Diversion (PC 1001.36 PC) states that the court may grant pretrial diversion,......
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Assessing Competency to Stand Trial in Criminal Cases & How We Evaluate It.

April 1, 2020

The most commonly referred legal issue for a forensic evaluation is competency to stand trial. Approximately 60,000 defendants are evaluated for competency annually, and the current research shows that this number is gradually increasing over time (Zapf, Roesch, & Pirelli, 2014). The legal standard for competency to stand trial was established in Dusky v. United States (1960) and every state has adopted a variation of......
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Managing COVID-19 Stress and Anxiety

March 25, 2020

In this time of uncertainty and social isolation many are experiencing an increase in symptoms of stress and anxiety. There are a number of ways in which these symptoms can be managed including maintaining a routine, staying active, reducing media exposure, engaging virtually and seeking mental health services (Miedziun & Czabala, 2015). Create a Routine While we are spending time at home it is important......
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How a Forensic Psychological Evaluation Can Help You

February 11, 2020

What is Forensic Psychology? Forensic psychology is the intersection between the clinical practice of psychology and the law. Forensic psychologists assist the court in examining specific mental health aspects within the legal context. The focus is to address the legal question at hand to help the courts make appropriate decisions using empirically based research, actuarial instruments and objective psychological tests. Unlike traditional clinical psychological evaluations,......
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Take a Mindfulness Break From Your Electronics

July 10, 2019

For many people, being separated from their Smartphone, laptop or other electronic device can actually be stressful.  Research has shown that for many people fear of being disconnected from their cell phone can feel just as real as a substance addiction; the feeling of withdrawal when the phone is not available or compulsive or repetitive need to check it.  It is estimated that the averaged......
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The Benefits of a Good Night’s Rest

June 24, 2019

Sleep is one of the most important, revitalizing things you can do for your body. When you sleep, your body heals itself in many ways, including metabolism, brain function, and tissue growth and repair. The following are some tips to ensure a rejuvenating sleep: Schedule it.  Try to go to bed and wake up at the same time each day, including the weekends. This will......
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Practicing Mindfulness

June 21, 2019

Mindfulness: It’s about being present; not in the future, not in the past, but being fully aware in the moment. Sounds nice, but how do you do it? Here are a few tips to focus on – right now: Notice your breathing. Fast? Slow? Notice the rise and fall of a breath. Imagine a sleeping baby as its stomach rises and falls. Notice sights, sounds,......
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Three benefits to taking a walk this spring!

April 9, 2019

Spring time is a great time to take a walk By: Cheryl M. Becker, LMFT, ATR-BC   Consider a walk to clear your mind.  Walking is a great way to engage in self care.  There are also many healthy benefits to walking. Walking can improve your mood: Regular walking modifies your nervous system to help decrease negative feelings. Walking with a friend can provide even......
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