Feasibility of Computer-Administered Language Assessment The assessment of language in early childhood is essential for the early identification of children with special needs. However, administering traditional language assessments to large preschool populations can be prohibitively time-consuming and complicated. Thus, there is clear value in developing a standardized, norm-referenced, computer-administered language assessment battery that is both ... Article
Article  |   June 01, 2008
Feasibility of Computer-Administered Language Assessment
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Amanda C. Brandone
    Department of Psychology, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI
  • Roberta Michnick Golinkoff
    School of Education, University of Delaware, Newark, DE
  • Kathy Hirsh-Pasek
    Department of Psychology, Temple University, Philadelphia, PA
  • The research described here was partially supported by NICHD grant 5R01HD050199 and by NSF grant BCS-0642529 to the second and third authors. The items used in the computer-based assessment were selected from three different language assessment and intervention programs developed with support from Small Business Innovation Research Grants R44HD35255-02 from NICHHD, and R44DC02601-02 and R44DC004487-02 from NIDCD awarded to Mary Sweig Wilson, Laureate Learning Systems. We also extend special thanks to Mary Sweig Wilson and Jeffrey Pascoe of Laureate Learning Systems for their contributions in writing this manuscript.
    The research described here was partially supported by NICHD grant 5R01HD050199 and by NSF grant BCS-0642529 to the second and third authors. The items used in the computer-based assessment were selected from three different language assessment and intervention programs developed with support from Small Business Innovation Research Grants R44HD35255-02 from NICHHD, and R44DC02601-02 and R44DC004487-02 from NIDCD awarded to Mary Sweig Wilson, Laureate Learning Systems. We also extend special thanks to Mary Sweig Wilson and Jeffrey Pascoe of Laureate Learning Systems for their contributions in writing this manuscript.×
    For those with an interest in computer-administered assessment, Laureate Learning Systems has developed a collection of computer-administered syntax tests that evaluate comprehension of 35 different Determiner, Tense, and Preposition forms (Wilson & Fox, 2008). Copies of this syntax testing CD are available at no charge and can be requested by contacting Laureate (800)-562-6801.
    For those with an interest in computer-administered assessment, Laureate Learning Systems has developed a collection of computer-administered syntax tests that evaluate comprehension of 35 different Determiner, Tense, and Preposition forms (Wilson & Fox, 2008). Copies of this syntax testing CD are available at no charge and can be requested by contacting Laureate (800)-562-6801.×
Article Information
School-Based Settings / Language Disorders / Articles
Article   |   June 01, 2008
Feasibility of Computer-Administered Language Assessment
SIG 16 Perspectives on School-Based Issues, June 2008, Vol. 9, 57-65. doi:10.1044/sbi9.2.57
SIG 16 Perspectives on School-Based Issues, June 2008, Vol. 9, 57-65. doi:10.1044/sbi9.2.57
Abstract

The assessment of language in early childhood is essential for the early identification of children with special needs. However, administering traditional language assessments to large preschool populations can be prohibitively time-consuming and complicated. Thus, there is clear value in developing a standardized, norm-referenced, computer-administered language assessment battery that is both time-efficient and fun for children, that yields a meaningful profile of children's specific language competencies, and that can be administered by testers in a consistent manner without extensive training. Here we discuss research undertaken as part of an evaluation of the feasibility of developing such a language assessment tool for use with preschool children. Preschoolers (M = 3.60 years) were tested using a traditional, standardized language assessment (PLS-4) and a computer-administered task assessing (via the use of a touch-screen computer) verb vocabulary and comprehension of plural morphology, negation, and noun-verb agreement. All participants completed the entire test without difficulty. Moreover, analyses revealed significant correlations between performance on the computer-based language assessment, age, and performance on the PLS-4. These data support the notion that a computer-administered language assessment is methodologically feasible and can provide a practical and valid means by which to assess early language abilities.

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