Goals, history, and development of the NEPSY
Children with developmental disorders or learning disabilities often exhibit multiple, overlapping cognitive or visuomotor disorders. For example, verbal learning disorders tend to co-occur with attention disorders (Dykman & Ackerman, 1991; Gilger, Pennington, & DeFries, 1992; Stanford & Hynd, 1994) and with motor coordination and visuomotor problems (Denckla & Rudel, 1978; Denckla, 1985; Korkman & Pesonen, 1994). Even in children with average cognitive capacity, as measured by psychometric tests of intelligence, multiple impairments may be seen. Similarly, multiple or diffuse impairment is also characteristic of children with a medical history associated with neuro-developmental risks, such as fetal alcohol exposure (Conry, 1990; Carmichael Olson et al., 1992; Don & Rourke, 1995) or very low birth weight (Herrgård et al., 1993; Robertson & Finer, 1993).
One important aim of a neuropsychological assessment is to identify all impairments of the child, as well as areas of relative strength. A comprehensive assessment is necessary to identify impairments and to capture the child's pattern of strengths and weaknesses.
Comprehensive sets of psychometrically developed tests can be achieved by using tests from various sources. However, a test profile based on separately standardized tests may reflect differences in test norms, rather than an individual's strengths and weaknesses (Russell, 1986; Wilson, 1992).