Therapy is a space where you and your clinician work together. The aim is to provide an environment where you can voice your concerns and develop goals for your future. Clinicians will support you by providing evidence-based strategies that can help to improve your symptoms and day-to-day life.
Psychometric assessment refers to the use of psychological tests to measure your symptoms, cognitive strengths & weaknesses, personality, and other aspects of mental wellbeing. The results from the assessment can assist with diagnosis, funding applications and getting you the right support in the community.
2. What actually happens in a therapy session?
During a therapy session, you and your clinician will sit down together (for face-to-face appointments) or connect via telehealth for a 50-minute period. Please ensure you are in a confidential space for telehealth appointments.
In the first session, your clinician will go over any important paperwork and discuss some general housekeeping with you. Your first session will be an opportunity for you to discuss your reasons for attending therapy. Over the first one to three sessions our clinician will ask you questions to get a better understanding of your background, including family history, school/work experiences, social life, and any other important information. You will discuss your main goals for therapy and develop a treatment plan for following sessions.
In following sessions, your clinician will use evidenced-based therapies to address your main concerns and help you to achieve your goals.
3. Does therapy actually make you feel worse sometimes?
Therapy is a safe space to talk about things that are concerning you. This can bring up strong emotions at times. Sometimes things can feel worse before they feel better. Over the course of treatment, your clinician will work with you to regulate and process your emotions.
If you have any lasting concerns after a session, you can reach out to our team during business hours on 0439 341 849 or email@example.com. You can also call the Bendigo Regional Mental Health Triage Line on 1300 363 788 or Lifeline on 13 11 44.
4. What happens in a psychometric assessment?
During a psychometric assessment, your clinician will ask you lots of different questions. They may also ask you to complete a range of tasks, including surveys, puzzles, and other games.
5. What are the differences between the clinicians we have at our practice?
All clinicians at Streatfeild & Co Psychology provide mental health support.
This support can look different depending on the clinician's training, experience and accreditations.
An Endorsed Psychologist (I.e. Counselling, Clinical, Health, Education & Developmental etc) is a psychologist who has met the requirements to be a registered psychologist (see below), has completed an accredited endorsement pathway Masters program, plus a further two year internship in the area of endorsement, to achieve registration as an endorsed psychologist in the specified area of practice.
A Registered Psychologist has completed between four and six years of an accredited tertiary psychology program plus placement hours and a one to two year internship program to achieve registration as a psychologist.
A Mental Health Social Worker has completed a minimum four-year tertiary degree in social work and an additional two years of supervised experience with a specialisation in mental health.
A Provisional Psychologist is a psychologist who has completed four to six years of tertiary study and is currently completing their Masters placement or final internship year to be a registered psychologist. Provisional psychologists are mentored by an accredited supervisor (an experienced psychologist with additional supervisor training) to support their practice.
6. What sorts of therapies are there and how are they different?
Our clinicians are trained in a variety of frameworks and interventions including but not limited to:
Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) focuses on the interactions between your cognitions (thoughts), feelings and behaviours. CBT takes a practical approach to restructuring negative and unhelpful patterns of thinking and behaviour to reduce the negative symptoms you may be experiencing.
Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) is focused on accepting the existence of emotions and life experiences and learning to work with rather than avoiding them.
Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (DBT) is a type of CBT that is useful for people who experience emotions intensely and have difficulty with emotion regulation. DBT was originally used to treat borderline personality disorder but know has a strong evidence base for treating a variety of disorders and symptoms including eating disorders and substance use disorders.
Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing (EMDR) is a trauma therapy using bi-lateral eye movements to assist the processing of and reduction in emotional intensity associated with past traumatic events. EMDR can also be useful to address distressing emotions that are not directly related to trauma.
Motivational Interviewing is a goal-oriented therapeutic approach used to enhance an individual’s motivation for making positive changes in their lives.
Play Therapy is often used with children and non-verbal adults. It allows communication of the client’s experience through acting, demonstration and metaphor.
Schema Therapy focuses on understanding a client’s developmental experiences and how these may have developed into unhelpful patterns (schemas) that can carry through to adulthood. Schema Therapy assist clients to understand and address these schemas, allowing clients to shift thinking and behaviour towards more helpful outcomes.
Mindfulness is the ability to tune into the present moment. It encourages us to notice what’s happening at the current point in time with curiosity and without judgement. This means that we can put a pause on our worry about the future or feelings about the past. It provides a way for us tune out of the chaos of work, school, and life in general. This can help us cope with the ups and downs of everyday life.
8. How do I find out the best clinician for me?
Finding the right clinician may seem daunting. All of our clinicians are trained and accredited. Just like you, clinicians have different personalities, work-styles and offer different clinical approaches. We encourage new clients to read our staff profiles on this website (see the Our Team page) and let us know if they have a preference for certain clinicians. Not all clinicians can take new clients all of the time so feel free to nominate a few options or we will do our best to provide a best fit according to your needs and availability.
It’s okay if you feel like you and your clinician don’t quite fit. This is not uncommon, just like when we meet any other new person. We encourage you to speak directly to your clinician about any challenges or discomfort you are experiencing as they may be able to address this with you. In fact, this process can be a very important part of intervention. If you are having difficulty with this, you can let our helpful admin team know. They will have a chat to our senior clinician or clinic principal who can make recommendations about how we can best help you.
9. How do I know a clinician is accredited?
Registration and accreditation are a vital part of regulation in the mental health field, ensuring public safety. This includes the legal right to use titles such as psychologist and mental health social worker. We ensure that all of our clinicians are registered, accredited and legally entitled to use their professional title. You can check the accreditation of our psychologists at Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA) and mental health social workers at Australian Association of Social Workers (AASW).
10. How do I know the clinicians skills are up to date?
To remain accredited and keep their skills up to date, all of our clinicians complete professional development training every year. In fact, this is a requirement of continuing registration with AHPRA and the AASW.
For psychologists this includes:
· 10 hours of peer consultation activities per year.
· 20 hours of other continuing professional development (CPD) activities per year.
- Endorsed psychologists may complete at least 10 hours within their field of endorsement.
For mental health social workers this includes:
· 20 hours relevant to Mental Health practice per year.
· 10 hours relevant to Focused Psychological Strategies (FPS) per year.
11. What are the specific psychometric assessments we complete?
We complete different psychometric assessments based on your individual needs. These assessments assist with diagnosis.
Such assessments should only be conducted within the context of a wider clinical assessment by a qualified psychologist. Diagnoses are made on the basis of a case formulation integrating psychometric, clinical and relevant external or support network information.
In addition to completing the psychometric assessment, you will need to attend an appointment and may be asked to complete comprehensive forms detailing the clinical information required to assist in case formulation and/or diagnosis and needs assessment for recommendations.
Some diagnoses require an 'assessment battery' as part of best practice diagnostic processes. This means you will complete a number of psychometric assessments that will be used to interpret complex presentations, ensuring we offer the best evidence-based process for diagnosis and needs assessment. Our psychometric assessment and battery outcomes are presented to you via a feedback session and report.
Our psychometric assessments include but are not limited to:
Cognitive assessments (WPPSI, WISC, WAIS)
These three Wechsler-developed tests measure the cognitive ability of younger children (WPPSI), older children and adolescents (WISC), and adults (WAIS). They look at different domains such as memory, concentration, and language.
WIAT (Wechsler Individual Achievement Test)
The WIAT measures an individual’s performance in areas of academic school work, including reading, math, written language, and oral language.
CTOPP (Comprehensive Test of Phonological Processing)
The CTOPP focuses on assessing an individual’s reading-related language skills.
DIVA & DIVA Young (Diagnostic Interview for ADHD).
The DIVA assesses core symptoms of ADHD required to make the DSM-5 diagnosis of ADHD. Results are interpreted in context of a wider clinical assessment and evidence of symptoms.
ADI-R (Autism Diagnostic Interview-Revised)
The ADI-R is an interview-based assessment that is used for assisting with diagnosis of autism (including distinguishing autism from other neurodevelopmental disorders) and treatment planning.
ADOS (Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule)
The ADOS is used to assist with the diagnosis of autism. It requires the client to complete different activities and play with the clinician.
We also offer a variety of other statistically validated personality, clinical and diagnostic structured interviews, assessments and reporting. Please contact our office to ask if we offer assessments you require that are not listed here.
Our test batteries include but are not limited to:
- Autism Spectrum Assessment
- ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder)
- Intellectual Disability (ID)
- Specific Learning Disorder (previously Dyslexia, Dyscalculia)