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Comprehensive assessments are available at the Belin-Blank Center’s Assessment and
Counseling Clinic (ACC) to determine the ability and achievement profiles of gifted
and talented students, to examine career and area-of-study options, to identify
the possible presence of a disability and/ or social-emotional concern, and to help
parents and educators determine a student’s psychosocial and educational needs.
This assessment typically includes obtaining background information from the family
and school, clinical interviews with students and parents, observation, and psychological/
educational testing. You can learn more about educational and twice-exceptional assessments on our blog.
Counseling sessions for gifted and talented students and their families are also
available at the ACC. These sessions are designed to assist students and their families
with adjustment and emotional difficulties that may be related to the students’
giftedness, talents, or twice-exceptionality (a gifted learner who also has a co-existing
disability). Family therapy services are provided at the B-BC by doctoral students in the University of Iowa Couple and Family Therapy Program under the supervision of Dr. Armeda Wojciak. More details about family therapy are available on our blog.
Social Skills Group
The ACC offers a social skills intervention group for students in grades 9 through 12 who demonstrate strong intellectual or academic skills and social skills challenges (either due to autism spectrum disorder or another diagnosis). The primary goal of the group is to help adolescents build relationship skills and increase self-confidence regarding social interaction.
Outreach and Consultation
A variety of consultation services are offered to parents of gifted and talented
students. Topic areas for consultation are diverse, and can include obtaining academic
acceleration options, planning for post-secondary education, and obtaining diagnostic
second opinions. The ACC staff is available on a limited basis to provide outreach
services to child psychology and education professionals.
Some of our webinars focus on characteristics of gifted students with academic, social, and/or emotional difficulties.
The Assessment and Counseling Clinic (ACC) provides training opportunities in psychoeducational
assessment, counseling, and consultation for pre- and post-doctoral-level supervisees
from specialty areas in school, counseling, and clinical psychology, and promotes
services for gifted and talented populations through these training opportunities.
The ACC training program meets the guidelines of the Ethical Principles of Psychologists
and Code of Conduct (APA, 2003), Code of Ethics and Standards of Practice (ACA,
1995), Principles for Professional Ethics and Guidelines for the Provision of School
Psychological Services (NASP, 2000), and Standards for Educational and Psychological
Testing (AERA, ACA, & NCME, 1999).
The clinical staff of the ACC consists of Dr. Alissa Doobay, Licensed Psychologist; Dr. Joyce Goins, Licensed Psychologist;
Dr. Megan Foley Nicpon, Licensed Psychologist and Clinic Researcher; Dr. Susan Assouline,
Director of the Belin-Blank Center; Nancy Whetstine, clinic secretary;
and graduate and practicum students. Drs. Doobay and Goins clinically supervise practicum
students who are enrolled in doctoral programs at The University of Iowa. Dr. Assouline provides administrative
supervision. Read more about our clinic staff.
Henry B. and Jocelyn Wallace
Henry B. and Jocelyn Wallace of Scottsdale, Arizona, have been outstanding advocates
for gifted students. The ACC was made possible by a generous gift from them. It
was the aspiration of Henry B. and Jocelyn that gifted children and their families
would have opportunities to receive counseling services. This Clinic is a testament
to their vision and generosity and is named in their honor.