- Obtaining Legal Guardianship over an Elderly Parent
While testing the ability of a person to make a sound judgment over daily activities, the most important test data that one needs to obtain is the cognitive assessments data. Therefore, in the case of determining the legal guardianship of MR. W, it is critical that one obtain the result of a cognitive assessment that is valid. In the forensic evaluation, Mr. W took the Wechsler of Adult Reading Tests (WART) and Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale-IV (WAIS-IV) tests. The result of the assessments indicated that Mr. W cognitive ability was within the region that dimmed him capable of aiming sound judgment regarding his finances. The result regarding assessment was the immediate memory in which he scored 78 which was on the borderline of the required score. The premorbid functioning, dementia screening, and executive functions all showed results within the borderline. Due to this, Mr. was judged capable of being able to take care of himself.
The case of Mr. W is a delicate one and needs results that are valid and reliable as possible due to the delicate relationship between the court system and forensic assessment filed. There is a need to use assessment tests that will provide information that is accurate, and the court can have limited questions on the psychologist. The accuracy of the assessment is critical because if the son is right then Mr.W needs medical attention and if it is the opposite then the son might have committed a criminal offense. Therefore, apart from the WART and WAIS-IV assessment, there is a need to add other cognitive assessment that would improve the validity and reliability of the results.
Since the tests took only cover the reasoning and ability to make sound decisions, there is a need to venture into other areas like numerical capabilities, logical reasoning, and figural reasoning. The Reveling Cognitive Ability Test (RCAT) can offer critical results of both the numerical and abstract assessments. The test has 51 sets of questions that renew each time a person takes the test in a streaming software. The difficulty of the tests increases after answering each question. The result can then be compared to the expected and normal scores to determine whether a person has the right cognitive ability (Hodges 2017). Another test that can be important is the Wonderlic Personnel Test-Quick Test (WPT-Q) that helps in determining the numerical and non-verbal abilities of a person. The test has a total of 30 questions that a person needs to finish within eight minutes. The last assessment is the Criteria Cognitive Aptitude Test (CCAT). The test is helpful in determining the ability of a person to solve problems, aptitude, and critical thinking. It has 50 questions which need only 15 minutes of completion (Naglieri et al. 2014).
The additional set of tests will offer validity and reliability of the test. They all focus on testing the ability of a person in numerical and abstract reasoning that was not tested along with other tests similar to a previous assessment done by Mr. W. In case of doubts, the results can be provided to assure the court or judge of the abilities of Mr. However, one needs to be careful not to provide over complex tests that are not within the study filed or knowledge of Mr. W to avoid misleading information. Additionally, the language and setting of the tests need to ensure there is no any bias regarding language, choice of questions, and culture. One needs to ensure that the person taking assessment know the reason for taking it and report any unethical behaviors to the appropriate persons. Finally, a psychologist needs to ensure that the results of the test are accurate in all assessment (Bush et al. 2014). If a person covers the different areas of ethical and professional standards, it will ensure that the reliability and validity of the test.
Each of the tests above provides at least one of the ethical and professional standards required in the test. The range of the results showing consistency will provide firm evidence of the cognitive abili9ty of Mr. W. There will be a minimal chance of making a wrong decision pertaining to the issue.
Bush, S. S., Heilbronner, R. L., & Ruff, R. M. (2014). Psychological assessment of symptom and performance validity, response bias, and malingering: Official position of the Association for Scientific Advancement in Psychological Injury and Law. Psychological Injury and Law, 7(3), 197-205.
Hodges, J. R. (2017). Cognitive assessment for clinicians. Oxford University Press.
Naglieri, J. A., Das, J. P., & Goldstein, S. (2014). Cognitive Assessment System: Brief. PRO-ED.
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