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Arnold School of Public Health


Developing SALSA: A School-Age Language Screening Assessment

Funding: American Speech-Language-Hearing Association AARC Award (Werfel)

Children who meet the diagnostic criteria for specific language impairment (SLI) often enter elementary school unidentified. For example, Tomblin, Records, Buckwalter, Zhang, Smith and O’Brien (1997) reported that only 29% of parents of an epidemiological sample of kindergarten children who met SLI diagnostic criteria had been informed “that their child had a speech or language problem” (p. 1256). Hence, there is a vital need for valid and reliable methods of identifying language impairment in school-age children (Rice, Hoffmann, & Wexler, 2009). 

The purpose of this study is to develop a screening measure that can be used to identify SLI in school-age children. The measure assesses past tense marking in oral reading.

Publications from this study:

Werfel, K. L., Hendricks, A. E., & Schuele, C. M. (2017). The potential of past tense marking in oral reading as a clinical marker of SLI in school-age children. Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research. 60, 3561-3572. doi: 10.1044/2017_JSLHR-L-17-0115