Check out our variety of resources to learn more about executive function coaching and the latest updates from Beyond BookSmart

Schedule a Free Discovery Call

Featured Posts

Making College Affordable: 5 Tips for Securing Scholarships

College planning can be both exciting and stressful. While students and parents ...

The Best Strategy for Building Strong Student-Teacher Relationships

When I had to move when I was in college, I did what most people do: I asked my ...

Freshman Social Jitters? 5 Tips to Making Friends in College

As August nears its end and a new school year waits around the corner, a certain...

A Personalized Process for Sustainable Success

Read about our two levels of coaching, then take our
quick assessment to see which level is likely to be the best fit for your student.

Mar 01, 2016

Parents often bring their children for neuropsychological testing to relieve some of the head-scratching that often comes along with having a childNeuropsychological_reports_help_coaches.jpg with weak Executive Function skills. They hope that their confusion will transform into some specific guidance as to how to best support their child. So, it can be quite a surprise when more questions arise after the testing is completed. The question that is on the minds of most parents searching for that next step is “How do I ensure that the support I choose for my child will address the issues uncovered during testing?” Parents want to know that the time and effort invested in a thorough evaluation process will bear some fruit; someone will be able to pick up where the evaluator left off and lead the child to success. The process could be said to be similar to entrusting a real estate agent to find you that perfect house; you’ve envisioned exactly what you want, but you need an expert who knows the field to deliver results. Executive Function coaches are often that someone when it comes to dovetailing the work of a neuropsychologist.

How is a neuropsychological report useful to Executive Function coaches?

There are several reasons why a neuropsychological report may be useful to your child’s coach.

As a coach who reads these reports often, the first details I look for are student strengths and interests. Knowing where a student is strong can help a coach reinforce and build on strengths while also addressing areas of weakness. For example, if a student tested strongest in verbal abilities, but lowest in processing speeds, I can tailor my approach to make sure that I’m allowing sufficient time for processing of information, or I could make certain to accompany written text with a verbal explanation or preview. The recommendations typically supplied by the neuropsychologist at the end of the report are always extremely helpful as well. They sometimes will include specific strategies, interventions, or technology that a coach can follow up on during weekly one-to-one coaching sessions.

How much of the neuropsychological report should I share with my child’s Executive Function coach?

Though the most useful section of a report is the one entitled “Summary and Recommendations”, each section sheds some unique light on the child as an individual. Whether reporting on the minutia of testing results, educational or geographic background, family history, or general emotions and attitude towards being tested, the neuropsychological report often gives coaches a glimpse into the many facets that make up your child. For instance, if the evaluator notes that a child tended to be risk averse when tackling challenging material, that gives me the heads up to be prepared with strategies to manage frustration or to enhance goal-directed persistence and problem-solving with that particular student. While Executive Function coaches are extremely sensitive to the privacy of families, if you are concerned about protecting your child’s confidentiality, you may choose to share only portions of the testing.

Will an Executive Function coach be able to address all the concerns of the neuropsychologist?

While coaches are most focused on building and strengthening students’ self-management skill sets, they often possess other areas of expertise or knowledge they could share with the child with whom they work. Some of our coaches are also experts in writing or in content areas such as chemistry or history. It is best to conference directly with your coach to see what supports s/he could provide in response to a report’s recommendations, and for which a teacher or other personnel could provide further support or collaboration.

For students who have a more complex learning profile, neuropsychological evaluations can be an invaluable resource in that they can often inform a coach’s direction or approach with a student. However, they are not essential components or fixtures in the coaching process. Many of our students are coached successfully without ever having formal testing to determine their learning profile. A neuropsychological evaluation is simply one of the many aspects coaches consider when helping students to build and strengthen Executive Functioning skills.

Looking for strategies to help your child regulate emotions? Download our guide below.

Download Emotional Regulation Tips Now


photo credit: NEC-Monitor-292 via photopin (license)

About the Author

Laura Moy

Laura is a senior level Executive Function coach, Supervisor, Intake Coordinator, and member of the Beyond BookSmart Professional Development team for our Boston branch. In her role, she supports students, families, and coaches in their collective efforts to help students experience success. She holds a Master's degree in Educational Leadership from Bank Street College of Education, and a Bachelor's degree in Special Education and Elementary Education from Salve Regina University. Her experience teaching in various classroom settings in the states of New York, Rhode Island, and Massachusetts has proven to her that above all, students crave the tools that will help them to navigate both the world of school and the world around them. Through years of being an Executive Function coach, she has found (and strongly believes) that what truly counts when it comes to giving children a quality education is the explicit teaching of tools and strategies that enhance Executive Functioning, leading to true and lasting independence, self-advocacy and empowerment in children and teens.


Related Post

Freshman Social Jitters? 5 Tips to Makin...

As August nears its end and a new school year waits around the corner, a certain segment of students who recently graduated high school are coming to ...

Back to Campus: Insights for Parents' To...

Transitioning to college is always difficult, but for the semester ahead, students and parents alike are more anxious than ever about the upcoming fal...

Inside a Master's Mind: How Chess Builds...

2020 was a year filled with discovering (or rediscovering) new activities to keep us occupied in a COVID world: the joy of baking banana bread, learni...