TTP #50: Dr. Ellen Braaten – All About Processing Speed

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Dr. Ellen Braaten literally wrote the book on processing speed. Her latest book, Bright Kids Who Can’t Keep Up, talks all about processing speed – what it is, how it manifests in real life, and what to do to help kids with it. Today’s conversation was packed with good info. Here are a few things we touch on:

  • What exactly is processing speed?
  • What’s the relationship between processing speed, executive functioning, and working memory?
  • How do you “fix” low processing speed?
  • What is the best way to measure processing speed in neuropsych testing?

Cool Things Mentioned in This Episode

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About Dr. Ellen Braaten

Dr. Ellen Braaten is associate director of The Clay Center for Young Healthy Minds at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH), director of the Learning and Emotional Assessment Program (LEAP) at MGH, and an associate professor of psychology at Harvard Medical School (HMS).  She is a psychologist, teacher and researcher whose career has focused on the better understanding and treatment of children with learning and attention issues, particularly ADHD, learning disabilities, dyslexia, and autism spectrum.

As a mother of two young adult children, as well as a psychologist, Dr. Braaten is keenly interested in parenting issues, particularly those relating to normal development, education, and parenting children with behavior and learning differences.  She has written a number of books for parents including Straight Talk about Psychological Testing for Kids, How to Find Mental Health Care for Your Child, and most recently Bright Kids Who Can’t Keep Up, a book for parents that addresses slow processing speed in children.

Dr. Braaten is active in clinical work with children and in the training of psychologists and psychiatrists to diagnose and treat ADHD and learning disabilities.  She is a frequent speaker on topics relating to education, child development, learning disabilities, autism, processing speed, and intelligence.  She has a special interest, in both her writing and research, in helping students with learning and emotional challenges succeed in the fast-paced world in which we live.

About Dr. Jeremy Sharp

I’m a licensed psychologist and Clinical Director at the Colorado Center for Assessment & Counseling, a private practice that I founded in 2009 and grew to include nine licensed clinicians, three clinicians in training, and a full administrative staff. I earned my undergraduate degree in Experimental Psychology from the University of South Carolina before getting my Master’s and PhD in Counseling Psychology from Colorado State University. These days, I specialize in psychological and neuropsychological evaluation with kids and adolescents.

As the host of the Testing Psychologist Podcast, I provide private practice consulting for psychologists and other mental health professionals who want to start or grow psychological testing services in their practices. I live in Fort Collins, Colorado with my wife (also a therapist) and two young kids.

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