Developmental assessments are usually done because of a concern that the child may have a developmental delay or disorder. It is used to recognise whether or not a disability may exist and if so, where the specific problem areas lie. It is important to include a developmental assessment when evaluating children with possible developmental problems because such assessments can:
- Help identify possible developmental problems and the need for further diagnostic evaluation (autism, mental retardation and other developmental disorders)
- Provide an objective description of the child's abilities and deficits (a functional assessment)
- Determine eligibility for programs (such as early intervention programs)
- Aid in planning for appropriate interventions.