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Dramatic differences in tests assessing preschoolers’ language skills

July 3, 2019
Science Daily

About 1 in 10 babies in the United States is born premature. These children are at an increased risk for adverse outcomes across a broad spectrum of neurodevelopmental domains, including language skills. They also are at an increased risk for attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) as well as other behavioral problems.

Preschool is a crucial time for language development. Children born preterm who display deficits in language skills are unlikely to catch up with their full-term peers. That’s why it’s imperative to accurately assess their language skills to determine if they need early intervention.

One common method of evaluating language skills is with standardized assessments or tests. Another way to analyze language skills is with language sample analysis, which provides a great deal of information on a child’s language abilities and overall conversational skills. Despite this test’s diagnostic utility, very few studies have analyzed language sample analyses in conjunction with standardized assessment outcomes in children born preterm.

Florida Atlantic University. “Dramatic differences in tests assessing preschoolers’ language skills: Researcher examines language outcomes of children born preterm and full-term using different tests.” ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 2 July 2019.