ALA-PLA: Remote SOI Career & School Placement Testing


I have come to really enjoy using the ALA-PLA test globally. The SOI ALA results below illustrate a difficult case, and I’d like to explain how I, as a psychologist, discussed the results with the parents. The goal of testing was to provide guidance for future (college) educational and career paths. First, it was important for me to identify his interests: classic comic books, film editing, and photography. He took the SOI test on 2 medications: Focalin (ADHD) and Strattera.

SOI identified his intellectual gift as transformational thinking (which I found unusual for someone on the spectrum, but not for someone who loved comics). My mother, Mary Meeker, would always use her favorite comic, Peanuts, to illustrate transformational thinking – Lucy would start the first frame cajoling Charlie Brown to kick the football, and end up in the last frame, pulling the football out.  I can hear her laughing now!

Since the parents of this high functioning autistic boy had 20 years of behavioral and traditional academic interventions, I sidestepped discussing the particulars of the low abilities. Instead, I emphasized specific SOI training in the areas he will need to be successful as a film editor, a cartoonist, or a photographer:

  1. Train CMR/CMS. Use a strength/weakness approach: MFS, MFR (memory is his strength).
  2. Order the SOI personalized workbook and CD for full training.
  3. Hit the decision-making training hard! Do all of the evaluation modules!
  4. Specifically train CFS, which he will need in his career and avocation.

The parents were overjoyed with the results. The skype SOI session left them with a sense of hope for the future!

written by: Valerie Maxwell, Ph.D., Psychologist

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  1. I enjoyed your article very much, as I have been working with some of these tools which Dr.Guilford gave me many many years ago to try their usefulness in the career orientation and personnel selection and training areas, You are right in saying that this approach permits an optimistic view on the life project of any person. It has and is happening in the great mayority of cases, to the joy of all involved.
    I would love to be able to meet you personally, to attend some training or seminar to keep improving and to find if it is possible to apply for testing on line in the future, given the opportunity or need.
    Cordially yours,
    Helena Reyes

    1. Hi there, Helena! So great to hear from you. We’re glad that you have been able to utilize some of our SOI tools! We would love to have you join us for a workshop. We plan on hosting several several Basic and Intermediate workshops this coming year. You can watch our website, Facebook page, or this blog for details that will be coming out!

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