Clinical Assessment and Diagnosis

Diagnosis and treatment for autism spectrum disorder (ASD)


The first step in getting a child the right treatment is getting the correct diagnosis. At Marcus Autism Center, our commitment to your child and family begins with that first step. Our staff offers diagnostic evaluations for children who may have autism spectrum disorder (ASD).

Our evaluations help to determine whether children meet criteria for autism, using the highest standard of care in diagnostic assessment. This evaluation process helps to identify a child's specific strengths and weakness and guides appropriate recommendations for treatment and intervention. At Marcus Autism Center, caregivers benefit from having multidisciplinary care and support services under one roof.

More About the Program

Toddler evaluations

Children 2 and younger are seen by a multi-disciplinary team for a one-day evaluation. This evaluation includes:

  • A parent interview by a medical provider
  • Developmental testing
  • Assessment of the child’s social interaction and play
  • Adaptive assessment
  • Feedback session with parents to discuss diagnosis, your child’s strengths and weaknesses and recommendations

This appointment lasts about 3 hours and a full written report summarizing these findings will be mailed to you after the evaluation.

Preschool and school-age evaluations

Diagnostic evaluations for children ages 3 and older consist of two appointments.

Diagnostic interview

The diagnostic interview appointment is a one-hour interview with parents. During this parent interview, the clinician will gather detailed information about your child’s development and current symptoms. You may also be asked to complete parent rating scales, and be given forms to be completed your child’s teacher or other caregivers. It is important that your child be present for this appointment. Please bring your child’s most recent psychological assessment and/or Individualized Educational Plan (IEP) and any assessments completed by the school. If your child has had any psychological testing at school or privately within the past 12 months, please bring this with you.

Testing appointment

Many children are scheduling for a Testing Appointment after the diagnostic interview. This testing appointment usually occurs several weeks after the diagnostic interview and includes an assessment of the following:

  • Cognitive abilities or developmental level
  • Social interaction
  • Communication
  • Emotional functioning
  • Behavior
  • Adaptive skills

This testing appointment lasts for about 5 hours and includes:

  • Direct testing with your child throughout most of the morning
  • A lunch break for families
  • An afternoon feedback session with parents to discuss diagnosis, your child’s strengths and weaknesses and treatment recommendations

A full written report summarizing these findings will be mailed to you after the evaluation.

Prepare for your visit

As you prepare for your visit, please consider the following tips and steps.

Toddler evaluation

  • Review baby books for developmental milestones

Diagnostic interview

  • Review baby books for developmental milestones
  • Bring copies of previous evaluations and your child's individualized education plan (IEP), if applicable

Testing appointment

  • Try to ensure your child gets a good night's rest
  • Feed your child a hearty breakfast on the morning of the appointment
  • Plan for extra travel time to accommodate morning traffic (testing appointments start promptly at 9:00AM)
  • Bring your child's glasses and hearing aids, if applicable



If you are interested in having your child evaluated by our team, you must obtain a physician referral and complete the steps to make a new patient appointment.