Cover Page



Essentials of Psychological Assessment Series

Series Editors, Alan S. Kaufman and Nadeen L. Kaufman

Essentials of 16 PF® Assessment
by Heather E.-P. Cattell and James M. Schuerger

Essentials of Assessment Report Writing
by Elizabeth O. Lichtenberger, Nancy Mather, Nadeen L. Kaufman, and Alan S. Kaufman

Essentials of Assessment with Brief Intelligence Tests
by Susan R. Homack and Cecil R. Reynolds

Essentials of Autism Spectrum Disorders Evaluation and Assessment
by Celine A. Saulnier and Pamela E. Ventola

Essentials of Bayley Scales of Infant Development–II Assessment
by Maureen M. Black and Kathleen Matula

Essentials of Behavioral Assessment
by Michael C. Ramsay, Cecil R. Reynolds, and R. W. Kamphaus

Essentials of Career Interest Assessment
by Jeffrey P. Prince and Lisa J. Heiser

Essentials of CAS Assessment
by Jack A. Naglieri

Essentials of Cognitive Assessment with KAIT and Other Kaufman Measures
by Elizabeth O. Lichtenberger, Debra Broadbooks, and Alan S. Kaufman

Essentials of Conners Behavior Assessments™
by Elizabeth P. Sparrow

Essentials of Creativity Assessment
by James C. Kaufman, Jonathan A. Plucker, and John Baer

Essentials of Cross-Battery Assessment, Third Edition
by Dawn P. Flanagan, Samuel O. Ortiz, and Vincent C. Alfonso

Essentials of DAS-II ® Assessment
by Ron Dumont, John O. Willis, and Colin D. Elliot

Essentials of Dyslexia Assessment and Intervention
by Nancy Mather and Barbara J. Wendling

Essentials of Evidence-Based Academic Interventions
by Barbara J. Wendling and Nancy Mather

Essentials of Executive Functions Assessment
by George McCloskey and Lisa A. Perkins

Essentials of Forensic Psychological Assessment, Second Edition
by Marc J. Ackerman

Essentials of IDEA for Assessment Professionals
by Guy McBride, Ron Dumont, and John O. Willis

Essentials of Individual Achievement Assessment
by Douglas K. Smith

Essentials of KABC-II Assessment
by Alan S. Kaufman, Elizabeth O. Lichtenberger, Elaine Fletcher-Janzen, and Nadeen L. Kaufman

Essentials of Millon™ Inventories Assessment, Third Edition
by Stephen Strack

Essentials of MMPI-A™ Assessment
by Robert P. Archer and Radhika Krishnamurthy

Essentials of MMPI-2® Assessment, Second Edition
by David S. Nichols

Essentials of Myers-Briggs Type Indicator ® Assessment, Second Edition
by Naomi Quenk

Essentials of NEPSY®-II Assessment
by Sally L. Kemp and Marit Korkman

Essentials of Neuropsychological Assessment, Second Edition
by Nancy Hebben and William Milberg

Essentials of Nonverbal Assessment
by Steve McCallum, Bruce Bracken, and John Wasserman

Essentials of PAI ® Assessment
by Leslie C. Morey

Essentials of Processing Assessment
by Milton J. Dehn

Essentials of Response to Intervention
by Amanda M. VanDerHeyden and Matthew K. Burns

Essentials of Rorschach ® Assessment
by Tara Rose, Nancy Kaser-Boyd, and Michael P. Maloney

Essentials of School Neuropsychological Assessment, Second Edition
by Daniel C. Miller

Essentials of Specific Learning Disability Identification
by Dawn Flanagan and Vincent C. Alfonso

Essentials of Stanford-Binet Intelligence Scales (SB5) Assessment
by Gale H. Roid and R. Andrew Barram

Essentials of TAT and Other Storytelling Assessments, Second Edition
by Hedwig Teglasi

Essentials of Temperament Assessment
by Diana Joyce

Essentials of WAISEssentials of WJ III™ Cognitive Abilities Assessment, Second Edition
by Fredrick A. Schrank, Daniel C. Miller, Barbara J. Wendling, and Richard W. Woodcock

Essentials of WJ III™ Tests of Achievement Assessment
by Nancy Mather, Barbara J. Wendling, and Richard W. Woodcock

Essentials of WMS®-IV Assessment
by Lisa Whipple Drozdick, James A. Holdnack, and Robin C. Hilsabeck

Essentials of WNV ™ Assessment
by Kimberly A. Brunnert, Jack A. Naglieri, and Steven T. Hardy-Braz

Essentials of WPPSI ™-III Assessment
by Elizabeth O. Lichtenberger and Alan S. Kaufman

Essentials of WRAML2 and TOMAL-2 Assessment
by Wayne Adams and Cecil R. Reynolds

Essentials of School Neuropsychological Assessment

Second Edition

Daniel C. Miller


To my loving wife, Michie, who for 26 years has been my best friend and best supporter, and to my parents, Roger Carlton Miller and Mary Jane Miller.


The Essentials of School Neuropsychological Assessment by Daniel C. Miller is yet one more excellent addition to the Wiley Essentials series. Over the years, the Essentials series, designed and edited by Alan and Nadeen Kaufman, has provided a valuable avenue for the dissemination of information across many specialties in psychology. Each book is a concise, well-written, up-to-date, and practical resource. These “little” books may be small in size, yet they consist of a synthesis of huge amounts of information. They are relatively little in cost, yet they provide referenced materials that are used in everyday practice over and over again. It is hard not to own an Essentials book that does not look dog-eared and well worn!

From experience, I know that it is not easy to write these seemingly easy-to-read books. Parsimony is the rule of thumb during manuscript preparation, and the author(s) struggles with the synthesis of vast quantities of information sifted down into small tables, “Don't Forget” boxes, and streamlined chapters that give all the constituent parts of a subject while not losing the big picture. Essentials authors try to be fair and represent the subject matter objectively and with substantial evidence. They take great pains to give practical, evidence-based guidance that translates quickly into everyday practice. In this instance, I am delighted to say that Daniel C. Miller has managed to provide us in this second edition another typical Essentials book!

In the 1960s and 1970s, when school psychology was formed as a field of practice, little was known about brain-behavior relationships compared to today. School psychology practitioners had to assemble quickly after the passage of the first laws that guaranteed children with special needs rights to a free appropriate public education. Researchers struggled with vague technology to document what was going on in the brain. In kind, school psychologists struggled with their duty to bring science down to the everyday level of the classroom. The gap between the laboratory and the classroom was wide indeed.

As technology improved in the 1980s and 1990s researchers were able to observe the brain processing information with increasingly clearer media and the natural progression of applying the information began in earnest. Studies investigating dyslexia, attention deficit-hyperactivity disorder, and autism (to name a few) gave us direct inroads into understanding the physical processes that underlined the behaviors that we were seeing in the classroom. In turn, the following first decade of the century witnessed direct remediative attempts that were based in concrete imaging neuroscience. Work by eminent researchers, such as Sally Shaywitz, Bob Schultz, Ami Klin, Peg Semrud-Clikeman, Erin Bigler, and many others, showed serious and powerful attempts to bring laboratory findings directly into clinical practice. Interventions that were previously based on theory and speculation were now becoming interventions based on concrete attempts to encourage neural plasticity and all of the benefits of strength models of remediation. Therefore the gap between science and practice has been steadily decreasing and school psychology practitioners are finding themselves in the middle of new information that must be translated into practice.

In the first edition of the Essentials of School Neuropsychology we acknowledged that there was “a movement afoot in school psychology to include neuropsychological assessment principles into everyday practice” and that this movement did not evolve as a strong reactionary force loudly proclaiming its right to be heard, but more as “a reflection of practitioners trying to keep up with the advances of modern science.” Some five years later, there is evidence that this quiet and serious grassroots movement is strong and continuing to strengthen as research on neuropsychological aspects of autism, traumatic brain injury, and specific learning disabilities are common in school psychology journals and trade publications. Indeed, the demise of the discrepancy model of learning disability identification has given way to powerful and theoretically based methods of determining cognitive strengths and weaknesses as they relate to academic skills. The latter requires inquiry into brain-behavior relationships and cements school psychology's commitment to translating neuroscientific knowledge to the individual level in the classroom.

How does the school psychologist keep up? What kind of information is needed in today's workplace? This quiet movement of applying neuropsychological information into school psychology practice is starting to crystallize. Leaders in the field are recognizing the need for training and school psychology training programs across the country are enhancing their curriculums to include courses on neuroanatomy, neuropsychological assessment, consultation, and competencies in medical liaison activities. Indeed, school psychology doctoral programs that have a strong emphasis on pediatric neuropsychology are now becoming common as the grassroots movement for continuing education grows.

There is enough established activity and interest in school neuropsychology for some authors to suggest that the time for a specialty within school psychology has come. The issues surrounding credentialing and competencies for such a specialty are quite complex, but regardless of the outcome of such issues, the fact that the ethical demand for school psychologists to be aware of and to incorporate scientific information into everyday practice will remain. Efforts to codify and express practice guidelines, such as those found in this book are needed at this time to direct and assist school psychologists in navigating their way in the future. It is not possible to wait for all issues to be resolved before applying new knowledge: That day may never come. After all, as a child stands before us today, we are charged to bring everything that we have and know to help him or her meet the demands of everyday living in the real world—not in a clinical setting, not in a hospital or rehabilitation center, but in a real classroom where most of the children have few problems and can easily perform learning and social tasks that sometimes seem insurmountable to the children we serve.

Daniel C. Miller's Essentials of School Neuropsychological Assessment—Second Edition is an important book. It provides us with clear and concise guidance on how to bring neuropsychological information and research into our non-clinical settings. This second edition merges the theoretical application of neuropsychological principles with the Cattell-Horn-Carroll model, which will hopefully assist with translating information to educational personnel in the school system. The second edition also provides supplementary information that is designed to have an immediate practical application. Clinicians can use the Neuropsychological Processing Concerns Checklist for Children and Youth immediately. The sample school neuropsychology report shell is also available. Dr. Miller also has updated the tables of numerous new tests and assessment measures to reflect a commitment to using the best tools of the trade within a practical model. All in all, the additions to the second edition are abundant and happily reflect the passion and strength of progress in the past 5 years.

The guidance in this book is not elementary; it is complex and requires much effort on the part of the reader to assimilate and translate into everyday practice. Dr. Miller emphasizes the need for formal training, appropriate supervision, and ongoing education. He also infuses the text with an exceptional level of competency, enthusiasm, and excitement for the subject matter that is contagious and motivating. This second edition is a welcome addition to the school psychologist's library and, like the first edition, is destined to become dog-eared and well worn!

Elaine Fletcher-Janzen, EdD, NCSP, ABPdN
Chicago School of Professional Psychology
Chicago, Illinois
June, 2012

Series Preface

In the Essentials of Psychological Assessment series, we have attempted to provide the reader with books that deliver key practical information in the most efficient and accessible style. The series features instruments in a variety of domains, such as cognition, personality, education, and neuropsychology. For the experienced clinician, books in the series offer a concise yet thorough way to master utilization of the continuously evolving supply of new and revised instruments, as well as a convenient method for keeping up-to-date on the tried-and-true measures. The novice finds here a prioritized assembly of all the information and techniques that must be at one's fingertips to begin the complicated process of individual psychological diagnosis.

Wherever feasible, visual shortcuts to highlight key points are utilized alongside systematic, step-by-step guidelines. Chapters are focused and succinct. Topics are targeted for an easy understanding of the essentials of administration, scoring, interpretation, and clinical application. Theory and research are continually woven into the fabric of each book, but always to enhance clinical inference, never to sidetrack or overwhelm. We have long been advocates of “intelligent” testing—the notion that a profile of test scores is meaningless unless it is brought to life by the clinical observations and astute detective work of knowledgeable examiners. Test profiles must be used to make a difference in the child's or adult's life, or why bother to test? We want this series to help our readers become the best intelligent testers they can be.

The Essentials of School Neuropsychological Assessment—Second Edition provides clinicians with a thoroughly updated practical guide on how to integrate neuropsychological assessment into educational practice. The author, a world leader in the emerging specialty of school neuropsychology, provides a useful review of the history of adult and pediatric clinical neuropsychology and paints a careful picture of the emerging specialization of this rapidly growing field. The book features a list of professional organizations, training requirements, and professional resources, such as books and journals, that relate to school neuropsychology. The author provides an updated, state-of-the-art conceptual framework that can be used to guide practitioners who are interested in conducting school neuropsychological assessments. The current version of the school neuropsychological model (SNP) explained in this second edition is a further integration of Cattell-Horn-Carroll (CHC) Theory with neuropsychological theories. This Integrated SNP/CHC Model is described thoroughly and systematically with a chapter on each component. The author provides a comprehensive case study that illustrates how the school neuropsychological conceptual model can be operationalized and the reader is provided with a step-by-step interpretation guide for making sense of divergent data. The second edition of this book contains a supplemental CD that is filled with copies of rating forms, sample case studies, and a sample report shell template. We believe that Essentials of School Neuropsychological Assessment—Second Edition is a vital resource for all mental health care providers who work with children and who are interested in integrating neuropsychological principles into educational practice.

Alan S. Kaufman, PhD, and Nadeen L. Kaufman, EdD,
Series Editors
Yale Child Study Center, School of Medicine


I would like to acknowledge several people in my life for their support and contributions. First and foremost, I want to thank my wife, Michie. She has been my best friend and primary editor for the past 26 years. I also want to thank my parents, Roger Carlton Miller and Mary Jane Miller. I got the writing gene from my father, the newspaper columnist and playwright. I got the attention to detail and patience from my mother. Thank you both for the nurturing guidance and support throughout the years.

For the first time in 23 years, I got some time off from the university to work on this book. Special thanks to my dean, Ann Staton, to the associate provost, Michael Stankey, and to the provost and vice president for academic affairs, Robert Neely, for their support of my release time. Also, thank you to Dr. Shannon Rich for stepping in as department chair in my absence.

Thank you to Bill Benson for doing the brain illustrations for the book and thank you Elaine Fletcher-Janzen for writing the Foreword to the book. Thank you to my colleague, Denise Maricle, who graciously edited early versions of the book and offered insights on ways to improve the content. Thank you to Glenda Peters, my administrative assistant at TWU, who helped “hold down the office” in my leave and who has been a good friend over the many years.

Thank you to several of my colleagues who contributed case studies to the supplemental CD. Thank you to my colleagues whom I have had the pleasure to work with in the School Neuropsychology Post-Graduate Training Program since 2002. I continue to be inspired by your professionalism and passionate commitment to school neuropsychology. Special thanks to Marquita Flemming, my senior editor at John Wiley & Sons, and her staff, for making the editorial process run smoothly for this second edition.

Finally, I want to thank the school psychologists I have taught or influenced over the past 20-plus years to integrate neuropsychological principles into their professional practices. Your collective commitment to providing high-quality services to children and their families is the inspiration that keeps me working hard.