Dr. Paul Ebben, a forensic neuropsychologist, provides a variety of assessment services for criminal and civil proceedings. For example, Dr. Paul Ebben performs neuropsychological evaluations in order to help determine an individual’s competency to stand trial in a court of law.
Neuropsychological evaluations are used to compare a person’s cognitive and behavioral functioning to a baseline of what is considered normal. In such an evaluation, a person is subjected to a series of tests that are designed to provide data on how a person’s brain is working and what strengths or weaknesses he or she might have in that regard. The tests typically focus on memory, mood state, personality, and intelligence. In addition, they often evaluate a person’s capacity for more complex activities, such as the ability to plan and to conceptualize.
These neuropsychological tests are standardized, in that the process is the same for each individual. The results are then compared to those of healthy people who share the same background as the test taker, such as age and educational level. The tests provide valuable information that can be utilized for a number of purposes, such as determining legal competency or the need for treatment.
Over the course of his career, Dr. Paul Ebben has conducted neuropsychological evaluations of patients of all ages. Dr. Paul Ebben has also published in peer-reviewed journals including research in pediatric neuropsychology.
The pediatric neuropsychologist makes connections between a child’s brain activity and his or her behavior. Drawing on training in neuropsychology and clinical psychology, as well as in neurological development, this professional evaluates children with injuries, diseases, or developmental challenges of the brain. By developing an understanding of how a child’s brain works, the pediatric neuropsychologist can identify the causes of a child’s behavior, the way he or she learns, and the root of many social and emotional problems.
When evaluating a child, the pediatric neuropsychologist will ask the child to solve problems and answer a number of questions. Many of these tests present insights into the child’s problem-solving abilities, attention and memory skills, processing speed, and academic aptitude. Others assess emotional challenges such as anxiety, depression, aggression, and social issues. Using insights drawn from these tests, the pediatric neuropsychologist can suggest interventions that capitalize on the child’s strengths and most effectively address his or her problems.
Dr. Paul Ebben currently works for Insight Psychological Consultants, PSC, in Frankfort, Kentucky, as a forensic neuropsychologist. Dr. Paul Ebben earned his master’s degree from the University of Wisconsin – Oshkosh and his doctorate degree from Wisconsin School of Professional Psychology.
The field of forensic psychology involves the marriage of psychology and law, examining human behavior in those involved with the criminal justice system. A forensic psychologist may be required to work with victims or offenders in the criminal area, or with plaintiffs or defendants in the civil area. Due to the nature of their work, forensic psychologists will likely find employment in private practice, prisons, police departments, or any number of additional government agencies.
Some forensic psychologists prefer to pursue the field academically and take up positions at universities or research centers. A forensic psychologist’s research activities focus to apply various tenets of psychology to areas of law, such as criminology.