Comparing Methods for Assessing the English Grammatical Development of Spanish-Speaking English Learners Identifying valid and informative approaches for assessing young English learners (ELs) is essential for school-based speech-language pathologists (SLPs). The present paper focuses on two distinct approaches for assessing English grammatical development, a key component and indicator of language development for ELs. The approaches addressed are standardized norm-referenced assessment and grammatical ... Article
Article  |   October 23, 2017
Comparing Methods for Assessing the English Grammatical Development of Spanish-Speaking English Learners
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Lisa Fitton
    School of Communication Science and Disorders, Florida State University, Tallahassee, FL
  • Mary Claire Wofford
    School of Communication Science and Disorders, Florida State University, Tallahassee, FL
  • Kristina Nichole Bustamante
    School of Communication Science and Disorders, Florida State University, Tallahassee, FL
  • Natasha M. De Novi
    School of Communication Science and Disorders, Florida State University, Tallahassee, FL
  • Bibiana M. Nunez
    School of Communication Science and Disorders, Florida State University, Tallahassee, FL
  • Carla Wood
    School of Communication Science and Disorders, Florida State University, Tallahassee, FL
  • Disclosures
    Disclosures ×
  • Financial: Lisa Fitton, Mary Claire Wofford, Kristina Nichole Bustamante, Natasha M. De Novi, Bibiana M. Nunez, and Carla Wood have no relevant financial interests to disclose.
    Financial: Lisa Fitton, Mary Claire Wofford, Kristina Nichole Bustamante, Natasha M. De Novi, Bibiana M. Nunez, and Carla Wood have no relevant financial interests to disclose.×
  • Nonfinancial: Lisa Fitton and Bibiana Nunez presented the preliminary findings obtained from a subsample of participants (n=7) that were included in the present paper as a poster presentation at Florida State University's NSSLHA chapter annual conference. Mary Claire Wofford, Kristina Nichole Bustamante, Natasha M. De Novi, and Carla Wood have no relevant financial interests to disclose.
    Nonfinancial: Lisa Fitton and Bibiana Nunez presented the preliminary findings obtained from a subsample of participants (n=7) that were included in the present paper as a poster presentation at Florida State University's NSSLHA chapter annual conference. Mary Claire Wofford, Kristina Nichole Bustamante, Natasha M. De Novi, and Carla Wood have no relevant financial interests to disclose.×
Article Information
Cultural & Linguistic Diversity / Part 2
Article   |   October 23, 2017
Comparing Methods for Assessing the English Grammatical Development of Spanish-Speaking English Learners
Perspectives of the ASHA Special Interest Groups, October 2017, Vol. 2, 45-60. doi:10.1044/persp2.SIG16.45
History: Received June 1, 2017 , Accepted September 3, 2017
Perspectives of the ASHA Special Interest Groups, October 2017, Vol. 2, 45-60. doi:10.1044/persp2.SIG16.45
History: Received June 1, 2017; Accepted September 3, 2017

Identifying valid and informative approaches for assessing young English learners (ELs) is essential for school-based speech-language pathologists (SLPs). The present paper focuses on two distinct approaches for assessing English grammatical development, a key component and indicator of language development for ELs. The approaches addressed are standardized norm-referenced assessment and grammatical feature coding from story retell narratives. The authors review the utility of these approaches for evaluating the English grammatical development of Spanish-speaking ELs. A research example is provided to illustrate how a small sample (n=18) of ELs performed on each of these English-based tasks. Findings reveal that children tended to demonstrate higher percent accuracies on the grammatical forms targeted within the narrative context compared to the norm-referenced contexts. These results, coupled with the background literature, indicate that the two approaches yield different information for individual children. Norm-referenced assessment allows SLPs to target specific grammatical structures and to obtain measures of children's mastery of those structures, whereas narrative-based assessment provides a naturalist measure of functional grammar use. Recommendations for practice are provided.

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