Help obtaining scores for tests privately-administered during childhood?
February 3, 2013 11:30 AM   Subscribe

During elementary school, my parents had me tested with a private psychologist in Fairfax County, Virginia, so that I could be admitted to the public school district's Gifted and Talented program. I took the Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children, Stanford-Binet, and Otis-Lennon between 1992-1993. Would anybody be able to guide me in obtaning copies of these test scores as an adult?

My parents can't remember which psychologist tested me and we've been unable to locate any related documents. They may be somewhere in my parents' basement, but after moving house three times, nobody knows where.

The school district's records department has told me they only keep results from tests they administered, so they don't have mine.

My next plan is to try to contact Pearson Education (the company that sells the tests currently), but I'm running out of places to look. Does anybody have an idea on where else the records might be stored? Thanks!
posted by globotomy to Education (6 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I seriously doubt that Pearson can help. They publish the test but the results are not reported back to them to my knowledge. Probably, tracking down the psychologist is your best (but highly unlikely) bet.
posted by tamitang at 11:52 AM on February 3, 2013

Did the record's department actually check your file, or did they just tell you that it isn't their policy to keep records of those tests? Because in my experience as a teacher (in Canada, mind you), test results that were given to the school by the parents would definitely be kept in the student's file. I would see if you could actually look at your school file, as there is a chance they might actually be in there.
posted by Nightman at 11:53 AM on February 3, 2013

Yes, Pearson will not be able to help you. They merely publish the tests.

Your best bet is to call around to see if you can find the psychologist... Or you can retake the tests! The WAIS (Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale) is scaled for age so unless you've had an impairment along the way, you should score somewhat similarly. Good luck!
posted by two lights above the sea at 12:11 PM on February 3, 2013

Do your parents remember where the office was? Maybe you could research the address.
posted by Mr. Yuck at 12:14 PM on February 3, 2013

Unfortunately, unless you can find the report in your basement, I think you're out of luck. Pearson won't know anything (neither your scores nor who tested you) and even if you can remember the psychologist's name and that person is still around and you can find contact information for them, they're unlikely to keep records on patients from 20 years ago. Even the school district probably doesn't even have your file anymore. My school district shreds files when the birthdate indicates that the student is now age 25. If you were in elementary school in 1992-1993, your files would already be shredded in my district.

If you need the scores for something now, the best bet would be to retake adult versions of the tests. In fact, they would probably be more valid now than the scores you got then (if you were under 7 when you were tested - cognitive scores are less stable in early childhood). Some insurance companies will cover intelligence testing if there's a medical purpose (e.g. ADHD testing).
posted by Nickel at 12:16 PM on February 3, 2013 [1 favorite]

Assuming that your school district still exists, you could make a request to see your file. FERPA allows students reaching the age of 18 the right to access the "permanent record" that is kept by the school. I am not familiar with VA or the particulars of how the district that you were in defines items for their permanent record, but it might be worth asking. The district is not obligated to keep everything and there are also strict schedules for record destruction that vary by state. I would send a FOIA request to the district (information should be available on their web site) and ask for the contents of your record.

Virginia's general school records policy is here. [PDF]
posted by cgk at 1:33 PM on February 3, 2013

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