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Needs Based Assessment at School


Entry requirements

  • This course is only available for Master’s students Psychology with specialisation School Psychology and research master track Developmental Psychology

  • Completion of this course (or School-based Prevention and Intervention) is necessary to start with the internship


This course provides education and training in psycho diagnostic assessment of children with cognitive problems at school, according to the Needs Based Assessment model (NBA). The model of Needs Based Assessment describes a decision-making process in which the diagnostician systematically proceeds through a series of diagnostic stages and is widely used in the field of school psychology. The process of needs based assessment is goal directed and aims to arrive at recommendations that teacher, parents and student find acceptable. The lecture series promotes knowledge of key components of the NBA model, specifically related to various learning difficulties. The corresponding work group sessions aim at supervised skills practice to promote student’s acquisition of assessment skills as presented during the lectures. In between work group sessions, students will conduct meetings with a child and his parents to gain additional practice of the skills. Students are expected to find a family with whom they can practice the skills.

Course objectives


Upon completion of this course, the student has acquired knowlegde of:

  • The psychoeducational diagnostic process, based on the NBA model; and

  • Various learning difficulties


Upon completion of this course, the student has acquired skills necessary for:

  • the formulation of evidence-based and goal directed problem analyses and hypotheses;

  • the administration of various assessment tools;

  • formulating acceptable recommendations;

  • writing psychological assessment reports; and

  • professional reflection


For the timetable of this course please refer to MyTimetable



Students must register themselves for all course components (lectures, tutorials and practicals) they wish to follow. You can register up to 5 days prior to the start of the course.


It is mandatory for all students to register for each exam and to confirm registration for each exam in My Studymap. This is possible up to and including 10 calendar days prior to the examination. You cannot take an exam without a valid pre-registration and confirmation in My Studymap. Carefully read all information about the procedures and deadlines for registering for courses and exams.

Exchange students and external guest students will be informed by the education administration about the current registration procedure.

Mode of instruction

  • 7 2-hour lectures introducing the theory and principles of NBA and various learning difficulties

  • 7 2-hour work group sessions facilitating training in psychoeducational assessment skills

Assessment method

  • Two written psycho diagnostic assessment reports (each 25%)

  • Oral feedback session (50%)

  • Active participation in lectures and work group sessions (needs to be satisfactory to pass)

The Institute of Psychology follows the policy of the Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences to systematically check student papers for plagiarism with the help of software. Disciplinary measures will be taken when fraud is detected. Students are expected to be familiar with and understand the implications of this fraud policy.

Reading list

  • Bray, M.A., & Kehle, T.J. (Eds.). (2011). Handbook of School Psychology. Oxford: Oxford University Press. (Free online version available)

  • (For Dutch speaking students only) Pameijer, N.K., Beukering, J.T.E. van (2015). Handelingsgerichte diagnostiek in het onderwijs. Een praktijkmodel voor diagnostiek en advisering. Leuven: Acco.

  • Optional but recommended: Carr, A. (2015). Handbook of Child and Adolescent Clinical Psychology. A contextual approach. London: Taylor and Francis.

Additional online-readings will be provided via Brightspace

Contact information

Dr. Femke Stad