Using programs for language sample analysis (Pezold et al., 2019)

Purpose: Although language sample analysis is widely recommended for assessing children’s expressive language, few school-based speech-language pathologists routinely use it, citing a lack of time, resources, and training (Pavelko, Owens, Ireland, & Hahs-Vaughn, 2016). The purpose of this clinical tutorial is (a) to describe options for language sample analysis using computer programs and (b) to demonstrate a process of using language sample analysis focused on the assessment of 2 preschool children as case studies.
Method: We provide an overview of collecting and analyzing child language samples and describe 3 programs for language sample analysis: 2 dedicated software programs (Computerized Language Analysis [MacWhinney, 2000] and Systematic Analysis of Language Transcripts [Miller & Iglesias, 2015]) and 1 protocol for using word processing software to analyze language samples (Sampling Utterances and Grammatical Analysis Revised; Pavelko & Owens, 2017). We also present analysis results from each program for play-based language samples from 2 preschool children and detailed analysis of the samples with potential treatment goals.
Results: Each program offers different analyses, comparison databases, and sampling contexts. We present options for additional analysis, clinical interpretations, and potential treatment goals based on the 2 preschool cases.
Conclusion: Clinicians can use computer programs for language sample analysis as part of a process to make naturalistic language assessment more feasible.

Supplemental Material S1. Additional resources for language sample analysis.

Supplemental Material S2. Results on matched utterance sets.

Supplemental Material S3. Developmental Sentence Scoring (DSS) results.

Pezold, M. J., Imgrund, C. M., & Storkel, H. L. (2019). Using computer programs for language sample analysis. Language, Speech, and Hearing Services in Schools. Advanced online publication. https://doi.org/10.1044/2019_LSHSS-18-0148