Processing & Cognition

We need to be able to process what comes in through our senses before our brain can take over and make use of it to understand the context, make appropriate decisions, and carry through our intentions. Difficulties in these areas will manifest itself in attention, behavioral, social, and learning difficulties, and is associated with learning disorders, autism spectrum disorders/Asperger Syndrome, attention deficit disorders, brain trauma, and infarctions. For the most part, therapy will be directed at ways to compensate for the difficulties in order to optimize the individual’s success in various aspects of life’s demands. There is generally much overlap among the skillsets to consider in treatment.

Auditory Processing

Making sense of what you hear. Impaired auditory processing can manifest in many ways such as difficulties paying attention to what someone is saying, especially in a noisy environment, or affecting the ability to hear differences in speech sounds, or associate speech sounds with letters, resulting in dyslexia.

Executive Functioning Skills

Includes being able to hold points of information in one’s mind long enough to complete a task (working memory); planning, prioritizing, organizing, starting and completing tasks or goals on time, and inhibiting impulses that interfere. Managing of one’s personal belongings is also an aspect that falls under executive functioning skills.

Social Cognition

Being aware that others’ have thoughts, feelings, and intentions that might be different than one’s own (theory of mind), reading body language, discerning sarcasm from sincerity; responding appropriately given social context by inferring the unstated rules of social conduct.

Critical Thinking

This ability allows us to judge the validity of statements and arguments; analyze and solve problems in a logical manner. It also involves the ability to interpret and create abstract ideas rather than be limited to literal meanings.