Our approach to Autism Assessment

At Evo Psychology, we prioritise a compassionate, neurodiversity affirming, and comprehensive approach to adult Autism assessments. Our experienced professionals are dedicated to providing personalised care that respects your unique journey. We aim to create a supportive environment where you can explore your identity and find the resources you need to thrive.

What is a Neurodiversity-Affirming Autism Assessment?

Neurodiversity-affirming approaches to Autism assessment emphasise the acceptance and understanding of neurological differences as natural variations of the human experience. Unlike traditional models that may pathologise Autism, neurodiversity-affirming practices recognise Autism as a unique cognitive style with its own strengths and challenges. This perspective encourages a shift away from viewing Autism solely as a deficit and instead fosters an appreciation for the diverse ways in which Autistic individuals perceive, think, and interact with the world. By embracing this approach, assessments can be more compassionate and respectful, focusing on the individual’s needs and potential.

In practice, neurodiversity-affirming assessments prioritise the individual’s lived experience and self-identified needs. This involves creating a supportive and non-judgmental environment where the person being assessed feels comfortable and understood. The assessment process is collaborative, often involving input from the individual’s family, friends, and other supportive figures to gain a holistic understanding of their experiences. Tools and questionnaires used in these assessments are designed to be strengths-based, highlighting the individual’s capabilities and preferences rather than merely cataloging symptoms and deficits. This approach ensures that the assessment is not only about identifying challenges but also about recognising and building on the person’s inherent strengths.

Furthermore, neurodiversity-affirming assessments advocate for personalised recommendations that align with the individual’s goals and aspirations. Post-assessment support is tailored to enhance the individual’s quality of life, emphasising strategies that leverage their strengths and accommodate their unique needs. This might include personalised coaching, specialised therapies, or community resources that promote self-advocacy and autonomy. By focusing on empowerment and inclusion, neurodiversity-affirming approaches aim to foster a more inclusive society where autistic individuals can thrive and contribute meaningfully, fully embracing their neurodivergent identities.

Why would someone want an Autism assessment?

  • Clarity and Self-Understanding:

    • Understanding your experiences and behaviors more fully.
    • Gaining insights into your differences, strengths and needs.

 

  • Improved Mental Health:

    • Reducing anxiety and depression by knowing more about your condition, and therefore being able to support yourself in a more informed way.
    • Developing coping strategies tailored to your needs.

 

  • Access to Support Services:

    • Qualifying for workplace accommodations.
    • Accessing therapeutic and social support resources.

 

  • Enhanced Relationships:

    • Understanding your particular needs in communication and social interactions.
    • Strengthening personal and professional relationships by being able to interact more authentically and advocating for your needs.

What to expect in an Autism assessment

  • Initial Consultation:

    • A thorough discussion about your history, including childhood behavior, academic performance, and social interactions.
    • Exploration of current challenges and why you seek an assessment.
    • Thorough exploration of special interest areas, strengths, preferences, and passions.

 

  • Diagnostic Interview and Questionnaires:

    • Use of standardised tools and assessments designed to identify autism characteristics and patterns.
    • This stage may also include input from family members or close friends to provide a comprehensive view of history and current functioning.

 

  • Feedback and Diagnosis:

    • A detailed explanation of the findings.
    • Discussion about the diagnosis and what it means for you.

 

  • Post-Diagnosis Support:

    • Recommendations for therapies, support groups, and educational resources.
    • Guidance on accessing community resources and services.

What does the process look like at Evo Psychology

Below is an image summarising the steps of our adult Autism assessment process, including the fees associated with each stage.

Frequently Asked Questions

When are payments due for each stage of assessment?

Payment for each stage is required before the next part of the assessment can be scheduled. The ‘report writing’ payment must be completed before your report/summary letter will be prepared by your assessing Psychologist.

If you are planning to apply to the NDIS, please advise us of this during the intake session and during the booking process.

 

The NDIS requires Autism to be “diagnosed by a specialist multi-disciplinary team, paediatrician, psychiatrist or clinical psychologist” and can sometimes rejects reports from a single clinician. Therefore, if you are wanting to apply for NDIS funding, we are able to get your report/summary letter “co-signed” by a Clinical Psychologist to support your application. This may attract an additional fee.

People who meet any of the following criteria would nto be appropriate to proceed with these assessments:

  • People with moderate to severe intellectual impairment
  • People without “verbal fluency”
  • People who are non-speaking
  • People experiencing current and extreme suicidal ideation
  • People with current psychosis or unmanaged complex mental health issues
  • Unmanaged substance use issues
  • Those unable to provide full informed consent in order to engage in the assessment process

Any adult who suspects they may be Autistic or who has been recommended by a healthcare professional can seek an Autism assessment.

The assessment process typically includes an initial consultation, interview, questionnaires, and admiistration of standardised tests. It may also involve gathering information from family members or others who know you well. Please see above diagram for a visual representation of the stages of the assessment process.

The duration of the assessment process can vary, but it generally takes several weeks to complete, including multiple sessions for thorough evaluation.

During the assessment sessions, you will participate in structured interviews, and fill out questionnaires. People say that the assessment process feels more “casual” than they were expecting, and a lot of people actually enjoy the process.

Yes, it is helpful to bring any relevant medical, psychological, or educational records. Additionally, having a list of your current concerns and any previous assessments or diagnoses can be useful.

Yes, all information shared during the assessment process is confidential and will only be used for the purpose of the evaluation, diagnosis, and treatment planning, in accordance with privacy laws and regulations.

If the assessment indicates that you meet the criteria for Autism, you will receive a formal diagnosis along with a detailed report (or shorter summary letter – depending on your preference) outlining the findings and recommendations for support and intervention.

A diagnosis can provide validation and understanding of your experiences. It can also open up access to support services, accommodations, and resources that can help you in various aspects of your life, including work, education, and personal relationships.

If you do not meet the criteria for an autism diagnosis, the assessment may still provide valuable insights into other areas of your life and suggest alternative diagnoses or areas where support may be beneficial.

Preparing for the assessment can include reflecting on your experiences and challenges, gathering relevant documents, and considering the input from people who know you well. It may also be helpful to write down any questions or concerns you have to discuss with the assessor.

After the assessment, you may be referred to various support services, such as therapy, social skills training, occupational therapy, or support groups. The assessment report will provide specific recommendations tailored to your needs.

The cost of the assessment can vary depending on the provider and the specific components of the evaluation. Information about cost is also included in the visual above.

It is best to contact our office directly for detailed information about fees and payment options.

Yes, you are welcome to bring a family member, friend, or support person with you to the assessment sessions, especially if they can provide additional information or support during the process. Please advise our office prior to bringing someone along to your session so we can make sure to have the room set up to accommodate them.

Unforutnately not. Assessments will need to be privately funded.