Blog Archives

Using the Preschool Language Scale, Fourth Edition to Characterize Language in Preschoolers With Autism Spectrum Disorders

Conclusions: The PLS–4 can be used to obtain a general index of early syntax and semantic skill in young children with ASD. Longitudinal data will be necessary to determine how the developmental relationship between receptive and expressive language skills unfolds in children with ASD.

from American Journal of Speech Language Pathology

Which Tasks Best Discriminate between Dyslexic University Students and Controls in a Transparent Language?

The need for a battery for testing adult dyslexia, and especially university students, is being increasingly recognized in view of the increased number of adult requests for a dyslexia examination in relation to both assistance and protection from discrimination. The present study examines the discriminative validity of a battery we have developed—the Battery for the Assessment of Reading and Writing in Adulthood—through comparison of the performance of 24 university students with a history of severe developmental dyslexia and 99 controls. All the reading, writing, lexical decision and spelling tasks of the battery, except omissions in a lexical decision task and reading comprehension, showed a good discriminatory power. In addition, use of just two of these tasks (fluency in reading a text and spelling under articulatory suppression) gave 87% sensitivity and 97% specificity. Our results confirm that in transparent languages, measures of phonological automaticity are the best indexes of reading decoding competence, particularly in adults. Copyright © 2011 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

from Dyslexia

Testing and Beyond: Strategies and Tools for Evaluating and Assessing Infants and Toddlers

Implications: The article provides important and timely information for professionals and families related to the screening, evaluation, and assessment of infants and toddlers with, or at risk for, communication deficits. Speech-language pathologists, other professionals, and family members can use the information to implement recommended and evidence-based practices when screening, evaluating, and assessing young children for communication deficits.

from Language, Speech and Hearing Services in Schools

Assessment of second language proficiency in bilingual children with specific language impairment: A clinical perspective

The goal of this study was to examine to what extent the conditions of restricted input of L2 and SLI have an additive impact on language acquisition. Therefore, the Dutch language achievement of 6-, 7-, and 8-year-old bilingual children with SLI was compared with that of typically developing monolingual Dutch children, typically developing bilingual children, and monolingual Dutch children with SLI. Assuming that speaking a language in varying environments involves distinct subskills that can be acquired in differential patterns, the achievement of phonological, lexical, morphosyntactic and textual abilities were assessed separately. For each of these abilities, it was determined to what extent the conditions of restricted input (first vs. second language) and language deficit (typically developing vs. SLI) cause stagnation or a delay in language acquisition. Bilingual children with SLI perform at a lower level than the other groups in almost all aspects of achievement in Dutch. For language tasks related to the mental lexicon and grammar, an additional disadvantage was evidenced as a result of the combination of learning Dutch as second language and having SLI.

from Research in Developmental Disabilities

Identifying Residual Speech Sound Disorders in Bilingual Children: A Japanese-English Case Study

Conclusion: Understanding the phonological characteristics of the native language can help clinicians recognize speech patterns in the second language associated with transfer. Once these differences are understood, patterns associated with a residual SSD can be identified. Supplementing a relational speech analysis with measures of speech motor control and phonological awareness can provide a more comprehensive understanding of a client’s strengths and needs.

from American Journal of Speech Language Pathology

Parent Perceptions of the Language Development of Toddlers With Developmental Delays Before and After Participation in Parent-Coached Language Interventions

Conclusions: Augmented language intervention may not only help the child communicate but also have a positive impact on parent perception of language development.

from American Journal of Speech Language Pathology

Influence of Syllable Train Length and Performance End Effects on Estimation of Phonation Threshold Pressure

Based on these findings, it appears that a five-syllable train provides adequate information from which to estimate PTP values. Furthermore, these findings also suggest that within the five-syllable train, any three adjacent syllables could be used to estimate PTP. These findings are significant in developing a clinically standardized, effective, and efficient method for collecting PTP.

from the Journal of Voice

Sensitivity and Specificity of French Language and Processing Measures for the Identification of Primary Language Impairment at Age 5

Conclusions: This study provides evidence that standardized measures of language and language processing provide accurate identification of PLI in French. The results are strikingly similar to previous results for English, suggesting that in spite of structural differences between the languages, PLI in both languages involves a generalized language delay across linguistic domains, which can be identified in a similar way using existing standardized measures.

from the Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research

Expository Language Skills of Young School-Age Children

Conclusion: The findings suggest that expository discourse sampling may be a useful addition to a language assessment protocol, even for very young school-age children.

from Language, Speech and Hearing Services in Schools

Assessment of theory of mind in children with communication disorders: Role of presentation mode

Children with communication disorders have problems with both language and social interaction. The theory-of-mind hypothesis provides an explanation for these problems, and different tests have been developed to test this hypothesis. However, different modes of presentation are used in these tasks, which make the results difficult to compare. In the present study, the performances of typically developing children, children with specific language impairments, and children with autism spectrum disorders were therefore compared using three theory-of-mind tests (the Charlie test, the Smarties test, and the Sally-and-Anne test) presented in three different manners each (spoken, video, and line drawing modes). The results showed differential outcomes for the three types of tests and a significant interaction between group of children and mode of presentation. For the typically developing children, no differential effects of presentation mode were detected. For the children with SLI, the highest test scores were consistently evidenced in the line-drawing mode. For the children with ASD, test performance depended on the mode of presentation. Just how the children’s non-verbal age, verbal age, and short-term memory related to their test scores was also explored for each group of children. The test scores of the SLI group correlated significantly with their short-term memory, those of the ASD group with their verbal age. These findings demonstrate that performance on theory-of-mind tests clearly depend upon mode of test presentation as well as the children’s cognitive and linguistic abilities.

from Research in Developmental Disabilities

Communication Matrix: A clinical and research assessment tool targeting children with severe communication disorders

The Communication Matrix [20] is an assessment instrument that is designed to evaluate the expressive communication skills of children with severe and multiple disabilities. It accommodates any type of communicative behavior, including forms of augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) such as picture systems, electronic devices, sign language and 3-dimensional symbols; pre-symbolic communication such as gestures, body movements, sounds, eye gaze and facial expressions; as well as the typical forms of communication such as speech and writing. It covers seven levels of communication observed in typically developing infants during the first two years of life. The instrument, which is widely used to assess children with severe acquired and congenital disorders in community and school settings, is appropriate for both inpatient and outpatient pediatric rehabilitation. Data from an associated database demonstrating the value of this tool for clinical service and research are presented.

<p><p>from the <a href=”Journal” _mce_href=””><em>Journal”>”><em>Journal of Pediatric Rehabilitation Medicine</em></a></p>

Reading and writing assessment scales: preliminary reliability evidences*

the Reading Scale was proven reliable, achieving acceptable levels for diagnostic instruments; the Writing Scale did not present an acceptable reliability level to measure the performance of the tested children.

from Pró-Fono Revista de Atualização Científica

School-aged children’s performance in the Brazilian adaptation of the reading processes assessment*

the adaptation of the Prolec to the Brazilian reality appears to be appropriate for the establishment of a reading profile of students, from public and private teaching institutions, who are undergoing the initial phase of literacy.

from Pró-Fono Revista de Atualização Científica

Embedded Effort Indicators on the California Verbal Learning Test – Second Edition (CVLT-II): An Attempted Cross-Validation

This study determined whether the logistic regression method that was recently developed by Wolfe and colleagues (2010) for the detection of invalid effort on the California Verbal Learning Test – Second Edition (CVLT-II) could be cross-validated in an independent sample of 100 consecutively referred patients with traumatic brain injury. Although the CVLT-II logistic regression formula demonstrated a statistically significant level of agreement with results from the Word Memory Test, it was associated with an unacceptably high proportion of false positives. The component variables of the logistic regression were sensitive to length of coma but did not covary with psychosocial complicating factors (e.g., unresolved prior psychiatric history) that were associated with a higher relative risk of failure of WMT validity criteria. It is concluded that the Wolfe et al. logistic regression should be used only with great caution in the context of clinical neuropsychological evaluations.

from The Clinical Neuropsychologist

Profile of Life Participation After Stroke and Aphasia

This study sought to obtain authentic information about life participation after stroke and aphasia. An interview was conducted with 40 individuals from diverse backgrounds and living in 2 geographic locations who had aphasia of at least 9 months. Participants were interviewed using the Profile of Functional Activities and Life Participation (PFALP), a semistructured, conversational approach to obtain self-reported information about a person’s life participation profile. Life participation profiles were unique for each participant. Overall, participants reported having difficulty with many activities for which they judged themselves to be moderately impaired and for which they reported low performance satisfaction. Interview data provided information about participation restrictions related to communication and other areas. Results highlight the need for personally relevant follow-up assessment of life participation among people with chronic aphasia to identify and guide viable interventions that extend beyond the traditional scope of care.

from Topics in Stroke Rehabilitation