Virtuous Circle Counselling


Gifted Assessments Calgary

Gifted Screening And Assessments In Calgary

Virtuous Circle Counselling is a counselling and assessment clinic that offers gifted screening and assessment in Calgary. Our assessments can be used for entrance into both Westmount Charter School and CBE Gifted and Talented Education (GATE) programs.  Our gifted program is designed to identify children who are gifted and talented, as well as those who need support with their learning or attention. Our goal is to provide accommodations for parents, teachers and students to ensure that each child has the best possible educational experience.

Some of our services include:

  • Gifted Consultation; and
  • Gifted IQ Testing.

If you are concerned about your child’s potential, it may be worthwhile to pursue a gifted assessment in Calgary from Virtuous Circle Counselling. Our experience in the field means we’re well equipped to provide you with the information that you need to make informed decisions about your child’s future. 

Our Assessors

Nicole Hartfeld (SW)
Provisional Psychologist/Assessor
Stephanie Innocent Assessments Calgary
Stephanie Innocent (SE)
Provisional Psychologist/Assessor
Nicole Granger Wannop Calgary Assessor
Nicole Granger-Wannop (SW)
Provisional Psychologist/Assessor

Frequently Asked Questions

Gifted assessments are designed to measure cognitive abilities and determine if a person has exceptional talents or intellectual capabilities. Giftedness is usually assessed through intelligence tests, typically referred to as cognitive assessments. It is important to understand that gifted individuals are usually measured with an overall score of at least 130 on the Full Scale IQ (FSIQ) with a +/- 5 point buffer. Therefore, gifted assessment results can be used to identify students who have the capacity for advanced academic work beyond their peers. Gifted programs are tailored with instruction emphasizing creativity, problem-solving, complex analysis, independent research, and other activities for these talented students.

You should bring any relevant school records, such as IEPs or report cards, and any previous psychoeducational assessment reports and medical reports that are relevant. Please ensure you take any required medication and that you have slept well and eaten breakfast. Please dress comfortably as there will be extended times of sitting. If your appointment is booked for a half day, please bring snacks and water. If your appointment is booked for a full day we will break for lunch (12:00 p.m. – 1:00 p.m.). There is a waiting area that has a microwave, coffee and water available or lunch options are available within walking distance.

If your child is being assessed we do have a waiting area where you may sit during the assessment. You may leave during the assessment time and come back at lunch. If your child is anxious about the assessment, having a parent available to see during breaks is often a comfort. Please let us know if you will be staying for the assessment. If you are unable to return at lunch or are running late, please notify us.

It depends on the individual and what is being assessed, but typically it can take anywhere between 2 and 6 hours. This includes the actual testing sessions with lots of time for breaks. The length of time can vary depending on the person. We always try our best to ensure our client’s comfort by providing breaks when necessary. When we assess children, we will have movement breaks but will also have some board games for them to play. If your child has a book, or favourite toy to engage with during breaks please feel free to bring it.

Time to report the assessment report can vary. Typically, we can let you know directly after testing if the criteria have been met. If it has, we strive to have your report and feedback available no later than four weeks after testing has been completed. If a report is needed for an application with a deadline, please let us know so that we can accommodate it.

The best age to test for giftedness depends on how you want your child tested and what kind of results you want to get back from the test. There are many different kinds of tests available today that can measure your child’s intelligence, creativity and personality traits. Some tests are designed specifically for children while others can be used with both children and adults alike.

IQ tests – These give an overall score based on how quickly a child can complete a series of tasks such as pattern completion and word problems. IQ tests can be administered at home or in schools, or mental health clinics by a psychologist.

Academic achievement tests – These measure how much your child knows about their subject area and how well they have mastered specific skills within that subject area (e.g., math facts). Standardized academic achievement tests may be administered at home, school or a mental health clinic by those who have been trained in administering these types of assessments.

Research shows that IQ scores are fairly stable over a person’s life. A child’s abilities and academic achievement are not fixed, but can be developed through appropriate stimulation, intervention and encouragement. The most important factor for developing a child’s potential is the quality of home life and school experiences where they spend most of their time.

Defining “Giftedness”

Giftedness is a natural ability to learn and process information at a higher rate than others. It is not an intelligence quotient (IQ) score, but rather a set of characteristics that make up an individual’s learning profile. 

The term “gifted” is used to describe children who demonstrate exceptional abilities or talents in one or more areas, such as creativity, visual-spatial reasoning, verbal reasoning, leadership and long-term memory. These abilities often lead them to perform well in school, achieving advanced levels of knowledge and skills in their fields of interest. A gifted child may be exceptionally intelligent but can also be creative, artistic or physically talented.

If your child is highly advanced, has an IQ score of 130 or above, and exhibits exceptional abilities in one or more areas, then there is a good chance he or she may be gifted. However, this does not mean that every child who scores high on an IQ test is gifted. There are many different types of intelligence and giftedness can be measured in many different ways.

Calgary Gifted Assessment

Is My Child Gifted?

There are several ways to identify gifted children. The most common is a teacher referral, but there are other ways as well. If you suspect that your child may be gifted, then try these strategies:

Talk to your child’s teacher. Ask them if they have noticed any signs of giftedness in your child. Teachers often see things that parents don’t notice, so it’s always a good idea to talk to them about it. They may be able to give you some insight into how your child learns, and can help you determine if he or she needs further assessment for eligibility for special education services.

Observe your child at home. If you have concerns about your child’s development or learning abilities, keep an eye on him or her at home and see if they need more challenges than their peers do to keep them engaged in learning activities. You may find that they’re bored with schoolwork because it’s too easy for them, or struggling because they don’t know how to focus their attention on what they’re reading or hearing in class. 

Either way, this can help you determine whether they might need further gifted assessment and evaluation by a psychologist or other professional who specializes in working with gifted children.

If you’re still wondering if your child is gifted, there are several signs that can help you tell. These include:

  • An ability to learn quickly and easily;
  • An advanced vocabulary at a young age;
  • A tendency to be more mature and independent than their peers;
  • A passion for learning new things and doing so independently without prompting from others;
  • Has an excellent memory and attention span;
  • Thinks abstractly and analytically, with a tendency to systemize information rather than just memorize it;
  • Extraordinary in one or more fields such as art, music, mathematics or science.

Does My Child Need An IQ Test?

Most schools do not require an IQ test to identify gifted children. However, some parents feel that their child needs to be identified as gifted so they can access special programs or services at school. The following questions may help you determine if your child should take an IQ test:

  • Does your child spend a significant amount of time learning new things and acquiring new skills?
  • Is your child able to understand complex information and concepts quickly?
  • Does your child learn from doing, rather than just listening?
  • Does your child have a strong sense of curiosity and love learning new things?
  • Does your child seem bored when they are asked to complete activities that they have already mastered; they want new challenges instead of repeating old ones?


If any of these sound like your child, then it’s time to talk to someone about testing your child’s intelligence level and see if they might be gifted enough for specialized programs or support at school

Remember, giftedness is a complex concept. It is not simply a matter of having an IQ above a certain level, although that may be part of it. Giftedness also involves other factors such as creativity, curiosity, originality and sensitivity. 

There are many different types of giftedness. Some people have one type but not others. Some people have many types but are not all equally strong in each area. For example, some individuals might be strong in mathematical reasoning while lacking in artistic ability or verbal reasoning skills.

Calgary Child IQ Assessment

How To Support Your Gifted Child

Gifted kids often go through childhood feeling misunderstood and frustrated by their inability to fit in with other children. They may feel like they don’t belong or fit in at school, which can lead them to become isolated and lonely. In order to support your gifted child, it’s important for you to understand their needs so that you can help them reach their full potential!

If you are concerned about your child’s intellectual abilities, you may want to consider having them assessed by a psychologist in Calgary, or a counsellor that specializes in giftedness. Psychologists and counsellors use different types of tests to assess overall intelligence as well as specific cognitive abilities such as memory and attention span. The results of these tests will help determine whether your child is gifted, or whether he or she has areas for improvement that can be addressed through therapy or tutoring.

If you want to know if your child is gifted, contact Virtuous Circle Counselling today. We provide a full range of gifted assessment and counselling services in Calgary to match each client’s needs. Call us at (587) 856-8369 to arrange an appointment or request more information.

Fee Structure

Gifted Assessment (Cognitive/IQ Testing only): Estimated assessment hours needed for a child:

  • Parent Interview for a child client (1 hour)
  • Testing – Cognitive testing only (2 hours)
  • Scoring time, file review, and report writing (2 hours)
  • Feedback for parents (.5 hour)

*If your child does not meet gifted criteria the report fee and feedback meeting can be waived for $550. A gifted learner criteria (Full- Scale IQ = 130 +/-5).

Total Estimated Hours: 5.5 hours

Total Estimated Cost:  $1,100

Gifted Assessment (Cognitive & Academic): Estimated assessment hours needed for a child:

  • Parent Interview for a child client (1 hour)
  • Testing – Cognitive and Academic testing (4 hours)
  • Scoring time, file review, and report writing (2 hours)
  • Feedback for parents (.5 hour)

*If your child does not meet gifted criteria the report fee and feedback meeting can be waived for $550. A gifted learner criteria (Full- Scale IQ = 130 +/-5).

Total Estimated Hours: 7.5 hours

Total Estimated Cost: $1,500


Many extended health benefit plans will cover in full or a potion of the cost for a Gifted Assessment. It is important to check with your plan provider for available coverage. We will work with our clients to organize the billing to maximize coverage. 

Book Your Appointment Online

We are currently accepting new clients however being a good fit is everything in a therapeutic alliance. When you’re ready, please contact us for a free 30-minute phone consultation to see if we match your needs and goals.

We at Virtuous Circle Counselling acknowledge Moh’kinstsis, the lands where the Bow and Elbow rivers meet, in what we currently call Calgary. We acknowledge that we are visitors on Moh’kinsstis and acknowledge the Blackfoot are those who named this area as Moh’kinsstis. In the spirit of Truth and Reconciliation, we recognize the ancestral territories, cultures, and oral practices of the Blackfoot people, the Îyarhe Nakoda Nations, the Dene people of the Tsuut’ina Nation, and the Métis Nation of Alberta, Region 3.