Red X iconGreen tick iconYellow tick icon


    Focuses upon the developmental aspects of neuropsychology, particularly on disorders common in children and young people- including autistic spectrum conditions, childhood epilepsy, foetal alcohol syndrome and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder.

    This optional paper focusses on childhood neurodevelopment, as well as the neuropsychological assessment and treatment of common childhood neurodevelopmental disorders.

    About this paper

    Paper title Paediatric/Developmental Neuropsychology
    Subject Neuropsychology
    EFTS 0.1250
    Points 15 points
    Teaching period Not offered in 2024, expected to be offered in 2025 (Distance learning)
    Domestic Tuition Fees ( NZD ) $1,275.88
    International Tuition Fees Tuition Fees for international students are elsewhere on this website.
    Limited to

    This course is only open to psychologists registered with the New Zealand Psychologists Board. There is no limitation on what scope of practice you will be registered under, however you will be expected to have prior knowledge of assessment, formulation and intervention, as well as simple brain-behaviour relationships, the application of psychometric tests and knowledge of basic statistics. The training is intensive and will require you to undertake 1,500 hours of supervised practice, in addition to your academic study over the two years.

    To undertake the PGDipNeuropsych you will need to meet all of the following criteria:

    • Hold at least a master's level training in psychology.
    • Be a currently registered practitioner with the NZ Psychologists Board, holding a current practicing certificate without conditions.
    • Be working at least 0.6 full-time equivalent in a neuropsychology setting, or a health setting with a neuropsychology component.
    • Be a New Zealand citizen or permanent resident.
    • Undertake regular supervision by an approved neuropsychologist supervisor, at your own (or your employer's) cost. Programme staff will be able to support you to find a suitable supervisor.
    • If you are employed by an organisation, we will need evidence of prior approval/support of your service manager.

    Course admissions are limited, so admission to the course will be on the basis of academic performance, curriculum vitae, current employment and verification process.


    Teaching staff

    Course Director: Dr Paul Skirrow

    Professional Practice Fellow/Tutor: To be confirmed

    Professional Practice Fellow/Tutor (Māori): To be confirmed

    External and internal guest lecturers.

    Teaching Arrangements

    This paper involves a 2-day on-campus teaching in Wellington, followed by weekly, online teaching for approximately 10 weeks.


    Lezak, M. D., Howieson, D. B., Bigler, E. D., & Tranel, D. (2012). Neuropsychological assessment (5th ed.). Oxford University Press. (6th edition due for release in 2023)

    Graduate Attributes Emphasised

    Global Perspective,Interdisciplinary perspective,Lifelong learning,Scholarship,Communication,Critical thinking,Cultural understanding,Ethics,Environmental Literacy,Information literacy,Research,Self-motivation,Teamwork.
    View more information about Otago's graduate attributes.

    Learning Outcomes

    This paper is designed to reflect the Context and Perspectives and Professional Issues knowledge components of the Curriculum Guidelines for Qualification in Clinical Neuropsychology developed by the NZSIGN professional body, as well as the competencies prescribed by the NZ Psychologists Board. With this in mind, the key learning outcomes for this paper are:

    1. To be able to discriminate key neurodevelopmental stages of childhood and adolescence, including likely psychological and neuropsychological and cultural impact of neurological injury in childhood.
    2. To be able to critically appraise common neuropsychological approaches to assessment of children and adolescents; including common cognitive tests, factors to consider in assessment, including cultural factors, and issues of consent.
    3. To be able to define the key neurodevelopmental features of autism spectrum conditions, including associated behavioural and neurocognitive profiles.
    4. To be able to discriminate the typical features of specific learning disorders such as dyslexia, dyscalculia and dyspraxia.
    5. To be able to contrast typical neuropsychological features of common developmental conditions including childhood epilepsy, Tourette's syndrome, foetal alcohol syndrome, cerebrovascular accident/stroke and childhood neurotoxicity (including late effects of childhood cancer treatment).
    6. To be able to describe common approaches to paediatric neurorehabilitation, including how this is likely to differ from rehabilitation with adults and the potential cultural considerations.


    Not offered in 2024, expected to be offered in 2025

    Teaching method
    This paper is taught through Distance Learning
    Learning management system
    Back to top