The independent assessment toolkit

Key facts:

  • Through research and testing, we have identified 6 assessment tools. We’ve called this the assessment toolkit.
  • Depending on their age and disability, new and existing NDIS participants will undertake three or four of these tools as part of their independent assessment.
  • The tools assess how a person functions in their daily life.
  • The tools align with the World Health Organization International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health (WHO ICF). 
  • We will continue to review the assessment tools we use to ensure they are working for participants and are the best fit for the NDIS. 

There is no single assessment tool, which would cover both the WHO ICF framework and the NDIS Act and would meet the needs and situations of all NDIS participants. That’s why we have identified 6 different tools for independent assessments, to be used where appropriate, to gather reliable information on a person’s functional capacity across all areas of their life.

Some of the tools will already be familiar for participants and their families.

You can read our report on how we selected the assessment tools in the toolkit (DOCX 1.1MB)

There is also an easy read version of the report:

Overseeing the use of the tools

We will continue to review the assessment tools we use to ensure they are working for participants and the NDIA. We are also investigating how an independent group could oversee the use of the tools to ensure a positive participant experience, and the consistent and equitable application of the assessments. 

We are committed to working with participants, their families and carers, peak bodies, disability organisations and peer and family networks between now and the start of independent assessments, to make sure this process works effectively for participants.

Why these tools were selected

We spoke to academics, allied health professionals and the disability community to understand the kinds of assessment tools that would work best for the NDIS.

As part of this process, we looked at and assessed more than 100 recognised and standardised tools for independent assessments. We needed to make sure the tools met certain criteria and they:

  • were disability-neutral, so could be used across all disability-types; 
  • assessed function, rather than impairment; 
  • were questionnaire-based, to avoid capturing a person’s moment-in-time function, for example on a ‘good day’, or with an unfamiliar assessor;
  • are accurate and reliable.

We tested some of these assessment tools in two pilots between 2018 and 2020. You can read more about why we are introducing independent assessments including our evaluation of these pilots here.

This page current as of
16 October 2020
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