learning skills, Testing, training

This Child Just Can’t Remember!

When I hear this statement from a parent or educator, my mind switches into a questioning mode.

What kinds of things don’t they remember?  Can you give me an example of what they can’t remember?  Is it just one thing? Is it multiple things?  Is it situational?  What’s happening when they can’t remember?  Is the information they don’t remember visual or auditory?  Is the difficulty in remembering information or numbers?

No, I don’t badger the witness; I just wonder.  The good news is that I don’t have to wonder long.

Fortunately, with the SOI assessment, we have the answers to many of these questions. Even better, Continue reading “This Child Just Can’t Remember!”

Testing

ALA-PLA: Remote SOI Career & School Placement Testing

CASE STUDY:  20 YEAR OLD MALE ON THE SPECTRUM

I have come to really enjoy using the ALA-PLA test globally. The SOI ALA results below illustrate a difficult case, and I’d like to explain how I, as a psychologist, discussed the results with the parents. The goal of testing was to provide guidance for future (college) educational and career paths. First, it was important for me to identify his interests: classic comic books, film editing, and photography. He took the SOI test on 2 medications: Focalin (ADHD) and Strattera.

SOI identified his intellectual gift as transformational thinking (which I found unusual for someone on the spectrum, but not for someone who loved comics). My mother, Mary Meeker, would always Continue reading “ALA-PLA: Remote SOI Career & School Placement Testing”

learning skills, Testing

The Door Opener to the Vision System

The SOI assessments provide information about an individual’s ability to process visual information.  Over the years, I have actually become more impressed with how hard the eyes have to work in order to actively engage the mind in the learning process, in remembering visual information, and in correctly solving problems with that information.

This is perhaps the most misunderstood group of sub-tests in the SOI Model.  Vision is thought of as eyesight, visual acuity, and the health of the eyes.  We are often told that an individual is concerned about his/her poor reading ability, lack of comprehension, and misreading words, and yet eyes are 20/20 and healthy.  It is not uncommon to have Ophthalmologists and Optometrists deny the SOI information that relates to low visual skills because the evidence is not showing in an examination.  The question then remains, “What is the reason for such poor reading ability and what can be done to improve reading ability and reading comprehension?”

The answer commonly lies in a lack of visual stamina.  When the eyes tire, Continue reading “The Door Opener to the Vision System”

Classrooms, Testing

Using the SOI Creativity Short Form Test

SOME KINDS OF INTELLECTUAL GIFTEDNESS RELATE STRONGLY TO ACADEMICS, OTHERS TO LEADERSHIP, AND STILL OTHERS TO THE CREATIVE ARTS & WRITING.

The Creativity Short Form profiles the creativity areas in which the student is gifted, near-gifted, above average, average, or below average. This test is often used by schools for highly capable programs, as well as gifted and talented programs.

CREATIVITY SHORT FORM SUBTESTS

DFU: CREATIVITY USING FIGURAL UNITS
Academic Skill: creativity with things
Curricular Area: spatial/graphic arts
Strength if well-developed: good fluency and confidence with ideas
Consequences if not well-developed: will be inhibited in tasks without explicit instructions

DMU: CREATIVITY USING SEMANTIC UNITS
Academic Skill: creativity with words and ideas
Curricular Area: creative writing
Strength if well-developed: ability to produce ideas and put them together
Consequences if not well-developed: will be slow and/or vague in writing; probably poor in composition

DSR: CREATIVITY WITH RELATIONAL SYMBOLS
Academic Skill: creativity with math and symbols
Curricular Area: mathematics
Strength if well-developed: confidence and willingness to explore new math concepts
Consequences if not well-developed: difficulty understanding new math concepts; timid in exploring solutions

After reviewing the test results, if a student just misses your cut-off criteria, Continue reading “Using the SOI Creativity Short Form Test”

learning skills, Testing, The Basics, training

Those Darn Potholes

I agree.  My topic and thoughts today sound odd.  I stand accused of thinking too much about educational challenges, even when sitting in a long line of cars out at the coast of Oregon.  A large section of Highway 101 was being repaired for potholes.  In the section I was at, it is only a two lane road and the wait ended up to be about 15 minutes going and coming.  I was not driving, so I looked up how much potholes cost the American people – billions of dollars.  AAA reports the cost of automobile damage resulting from potholes to be 6.5 billion dollars a year.

For learners in our educational system, the learning continuum has many potholes.  Learning numbers is easy, but letters and letter sounds is not.  Having a great story to write in our thoughts is never expressed in a timely fashion due to struggles with handwriting, spelling, or grammar.  Algebra comes more easily than geometry or the other way around.  Time spent studying for a test is met with low scores due to poor memory.  The history teacher is interesting to listen to, but reading from the history text is a painful experience of reading and rereading to comprehend the unfamiliar information and numerous facts.  The potholes in learning are as numerous as in our roads after a hard freeze.  Billions of dollars are spent in education on students who struggle to successfully navigate their way through education.

What does this failure to navigate successfully do to the self-esteem and motivation of our students?  What poor decisions are made by students out of frustration and repeated failure?  How many students turn off the main road and travel roads that lead to negative consequences?  How do you start the engine of motivation to learn when on empty?

The SOI (Structure of Intellect) Assessment of Learning Ability is the GPS system in learning.  We Continue reading “Those Darn Potholes”

Testing

SOI Career Guidance

Two recent private female clients of mine, both historically considered “misfits” by their schools and parents, took the SOI-ALA computer test. I was struck by the similarities in profiles: high creativity (DFU & DMU) and low evaluation.

My mother, Mary Meeker, identified years ago a pattern of the struggling creatively gifted. Both of these girls have had difficulty keeping jobs and finding work that was meaningful. Both had creativity scores above the 98th percentile. Evaluation scores were below the 10th percentile. They both reported that they not only cannot make good decisions about the jobs they choose, but that they are indecisive on the job and often get criticized or fired because of indecision. They also have both chosen poorly in their social lives with boyfriends and friends.

While it is never easy to deliver the news to a client that they have a severe learning disability, if done in the right way, it can be very helpful, as it was with each of my clients. Remember to use the “sandwich approach,” which is positive-negative-positive.

“So, Jayne, the SOI test confirms that you are gifted in creative writing, and you should finish that book proposal! However, were you aware that making decisions is not your strength? It is probably something you have struggled with your whole life. We can help you develop those abilities. In our philosophy, a disability is simply an opportunity to develop a true learning ability. We can do this together. We also found that your creative drawing ability is fantastic!”

And so we began to train intellectual abilities that support the psychotherapy.

written by: Valerie Maxwell, Ph.D., Psychologist

Testing, The Basics, training

Learning Abilities Testing: How It Works

The key to remedy learning failure is to know why the failure is occurring and to have a systematic approach for eliminating the cause.

TESTS

SOI tests are tests of learning abilities. If students are having difficulty learning, the cause may be a lack of learning abilities. Learning abilities are more fundamental than curricular skills, yet most “diagnostics” of learning problems focus exclusively on curricular skills, and thus most remedial programs are focused on the same curricular skills. When the usual remedial programs are not successful, the causes of the learning problems have probably been misdiagnosed.

SOI tests offer an alternative source of diagnostic information, and SOI training modules offer an effective alternative by teaching learning abilities. SOI tests are available for ages ranging from five years old to adult. We have BRAND NEW online option for testing! Click here to learn more!

RESULTS

SOI tests profile the following abilities: reading, math, memory, comprehension, problem-solving, evaluation, and creativity. Comprehension, memory, and problem-solving abilities are needed from the first day of kindergarten to the last day of college.

Throughout Continue reading “Learning Abilities Testing: How It Works”