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This week’s blog was contributed by Melissa Milanak, PhD. Melissa is a licensed clinical psychologist and internationally recognized academic. She has extensive clinical experience providing therapy and conducting assessments with a diverse array of patient populations. 

Learning more about assessment products can improve our ability to provide the best care for our clients, patients, and students. However, continuing education can also directly relate to other professional duties, such as keeping our license current and educating trainees. 

For example, when your job is to train future providers, having accurate, easily accessible resources not only saves time but also engages trainees in new and exciting ways. PAR’s Training Portal features product-specific videos, resources, and practical applications that can provide hours of didactic support for trainees. These tools are also ideal for established providers who want to learn more about a new product or get a refresher on an instrument they might not have used recently. PAR’s Training Portal is completely free of charge and available on demand, 24/7. New content is added regularly, so it’s good practice to check back frequently for information relevant to your practice. 

You can easily put products into practice using the 40% discount we offer on training materials that provide hands-on, practical experience. With PAR’s University Partnership Program (UPP), you can determine the tests that best fit your syllabus and get access to concierge support to design your own training (including PowerPoint slides, free test kits, and products), along with student discounts and faculty research discounts. 

In addition, as a licensed provider, you must receive continuing education (CE). Though requirements can seem arduous and tedious, it’s important for you to continually learn about the tools and practices that can best help your patients and clients—and it can often be an exciting way to learn about what’s innovative and new in the industry. Even gold-standard assessments are updated and renormed as the literature grows and new insights are uncovered. The key as a provider is to balance relying on the assessments we know and love and have served us well (and helped many of our patients and clients over the years) while also keeping current with updates and edits, new product offerings, and useful new applications of our reliable tools! 

PARtalks, our webinar platform, offers a vast array of CE sessions on products and applications. Featuring experts from a variety of backgrounds and topic areas, as well as insight from product authors and knowledgeable PAR staff, our webinars cover many topics relevant to psychological practice. Check out PARtalks frequently to see what webinars are coming up and which offer CE credits. And if you miss a live session, head back to the PAR Training Portal to view a recording. 

Whether you are working with trainees or looking to further your own education on a topic, PAR offers a number of options to help you! 

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This week’s blog was contributed by Carrie Champ Morera, PsyD, NCSP, LP. Carrie is a licensed school psychologist and the lead project and content director at PAR. 

 

The increased use of telehealth—including teleassessment—has changed psychological assessment practices. Although many of us have adjusted our assessment practices to keep up with the times, we have to keep in mind that, when engaging in teleassessment, our practices must be ethical—just as if we were providing in-person assessment services. 

Here are 10 ethical considerations for practitioners to consider when providing services via teleassessment. 

1. Obtain informed consent. Just as you would do with in-person assessment practices, obtain informed consent prior to providing telehealth services. Informed consent is more than a form—it’s a process. 

2. Train and practice. Carefully review standardization procedures for the assessment. Practice the assessments several times using the technology and platforms with which you plan to administer them. 

3. Consult with colleagues. Talk about ethical dilemmas with colleagues, consult the literature, and continue to update your ethical guidelines. It’s important to lean on one another for practice, support, and guidance. 

4. Follow the publisher’s guidelines. PAR developed a statement on telehealth that addresses test security and measurement concerns. The integrity and security of the tests must always be maintained. 

5. Keep forms and data secure. Make sure paper protocols and electronic forms are stored securely. Consider password protections, encryption, and malware protection and keep backups. 

6. Establish and maintain professional boundaries. It can be tempting to relax your professional boundaries in a telehealth setting. Dress professionally, reduce distractions, and set clear expectations with your clients. 

7. Consider cultural factors. Consider the implications for clients from traditionally marginalized backgrounds or various socioeconomic and ethnic backgrounds or those with less computer experience. 

8. Document the use of digital and remote assessments. Include a statement in your report that assessment was conducted via telehealth. Record any technical issues, and disclose any modifications or alterations of standardized procedures. 

9. Consider the psychological effects of the pandemic in digital and remote assessment. We’ve seen a general increase in anxiety, depression, grief and loss, and isolation. Go beyond scores and evaluate individual item responses. Stressors all contribute to these psychological effects, perhaps now more than ever. 

10. Take advantage of PAR resources. We have many teleassessment resources and a wide selection of products available for administration, scoring, and/or interpretation on PARiConnect—and we are always adding more! Need to brush up on your teleassessment skills? Check out this video from PAR’s Director of Customer Support, Daniel McFadden, or visit the PAR Training Portal for more insight. You can use PAR products via telehealth technology while retaining the integrity and security of the measures. PAR has several tools available to help you navigate this challenge. 

 

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This week’s blog was contributed by Darla DeCarlo, LMHC, PsyS, PAR’s regional manager–educational assessments. Darla is a certified school psychologist who spent more than 30 years providing professional services in a variety of settings.  

School personnel have been navigating chaotic times for almost two years, and psychological services departments have had to make some difficult decisions. Positions have been eliminated, staff has changed, and psychologists have had to juggle added tasks within their department (and/or schools) while grappling with existing duties. With all of this added responsibility comes added pressure. 

One common concern among school psychologists is finding time to train on assessment tools. Introducing an entire staff to new test options, training new staff and interns on existing instruments, 

and familiarizing staff on what’s available can be confusing and time-consuming. Incorporating the free PAR Training Portal as part of regular monthly staff meetings can provide solutions to these problems. In just 30 to 60 minutes, an entire staff can learn more about a PAR tool—from instrument overview and development to scoring and normative data. It’s a perfect way to provide needed training while preserving staff members’ valuable time to take care of district business. Staff who can’t attend can access the presentation online 24/7, ensuring staff members are on the same page when it comes to assessment training. The PAR Training Portal also includes recorded topical and author webinars, and the training courses and presentations are updated frequently. 

When psychological services departments are dedicated to improving staff knowledge to keep up with changes in school psychology, it can increase staff efficiency and build confidence. In addition, participating in trainings helps reinforce group goals, shows the staff they are valued, and improves morale. And who doesn’t want that for their staff? 

Visit partrainingportal.com to get started. 

 

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New release! An interactive overview course on the Neuropsychological Assessment Battery® (NAB®) as well as a series of 6 video courses, one devoted to administration and scoring of each NAB Module, have been added to the PAR Training Portal. Whether you want a deeper understanding of a specific NAB test or are looking for general background information, these additions to the Training Portal are ideal for both casual and expert-level users of the instrument, providing you greater insight into one of our most popular products. 

The PAR Training Portal is a free, on-demand resource available 24/7. To view the NAB courses or to view a list of the more than 65 training resources available, simply log in with your parinc.com username and password and select “Neuropsychology” under the “Browse for Training” menu at the bottom left-hand side of the screen.  

Haven’t visited in a while? There’s more! 

Log in today to see what’s new! Use your parinc.com username and password. 

 

 

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On June 3, we held the first live PARtalks event, a FREE day of virtual sessions featuring today’s most in-demand speakers on school psychology. The response to these timely topics was overwhelming!

We are pleased to offer access to the recorded sessions at no cost through the PAR Training Portal. Log in using your parinc.com username and password to view the recorded sessions and share with your friends and colleagues. Don’t have a free account? It’s easy to register. Sessions on the portal include:

Healing Together: Mental Health, Trauma, and Resilience in the Wake of a Global Pandemic

Presented by Kristin Greco, PAR CEO, and Kirby Wycoff, PsyD, NCSP

Following welcoming remarks from Kristin Greco, Dr. Wycoff discusses emergent research around the mental health impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic and how resilience and connectedness can help communities heal.

The Neuropsychology of Stress and Trauma: How to Develop a Trauma-Informed Assessment 

Presented by Steven G. Feifer, DEd, and Terri Sisson, EdS

This presentation will explore the neural underpinnings of stress, trauma, and emotional dysfunction in children and its impact on learning.

Learning Disability Evaluations During and After a Pandemic

Presented by Peter K. Isquith, PhD, and Theo Miron, PsyS, NCSP

This presentation will address several challenges practitioners face when evaluating students after more than a year of disrupted instruction, further complicated by restrictions on typical assessment processes and settings.

Ethics in Psychological Tele-Assessment with Children

Presented by A. Jordan Wright, PhD, ABAP, and Carrie Champ Morera, PsyD, NCSP, LP

This presentation will discuss ethical considerations that practitioners need to keep in mind while conduct­ing teleassessment sessions. Topics include practitioner training and competence, and steps to ensure the client’s safety and appropriateness for telehealth.

More PARtalks! Browse our upcoming PARtalks virtual sessions and register soon—space is limited!

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Whether you want a deeper understanding of a favorite product or want a sneak peek into a test you are considering, the interactive courses, recorded webinars, video tutorials, and supplemental materials on the PAR Training Portal give you greater insight into some of our most popular products.

The PAR Training Portal is a free, on-demand resource available 24/7. Some of our newest offerings include:

Log in today to see what’s new! Use your parinc.com username and password.

 

 

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Let the EDDT family of products help you find the way when navigating the challenging path of an emotional disturbance diagnosis. The EDDT family of products offer school/clinical professionals a standardized approach to gathering information from parents, teachers, and the student him or herself about the individuals functioning in the areas that make up the federal ED criteria. Now training on how to use the EDDT products is available on the PAR Training Portal.

 

Whether you are a long-time user and want a greater understanding of the products or are considering purchasing for the first time, this course will give you greater insight into the assessment of emotional disturbance, the decisions made when developing the EDDT, and how the different components work together to promote a comprehensive assessment of the student across school and home environments.

 

The PAR Training Portal is a free, on-demand resource available 24/7.

 

Visit partrainingportal.com today!

 

Simply use your parinc.com account to log in. Don’t have a free account? It’s easy to register.



 

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