Incorporating Computer-Aided Language Sample Analysis Into Clinical Practice


    During the evaluation of language abilities, the needs of the child are best served when multiple types and sources of data are included in the evaluation process. Current educational policies and practice guidelines further dictate the use of authentic assessment data to inform diagnosis and treatment planning. Language sampling and analysis (LSA) offers an important clinical tool for gathering such authentic assessment data, and computer-aided methods of LSA make it clinically feasible. The purpose of this tutorial is to provide step-by-step procedures for computer-aided LSA (CLSA).


    This tutorial includes instructions for a 4-step CLSA process: (a) eliciting a representative sample of the child’s language and recording it directly onto the computer; (b) transcribing the language sample; (c) analyzing the language sample and interpreting the results using a readily available software program, Systematic Analysis of Language Transcripts (SALT; J. Miller & A. Iglesias, 2006); and (d) using the results to plan the child’s treatment goals and activities. A case study is provided to illustrate this process.


    Digital technologies can dramatically improve the feasibility of LSA, potentially transforming clinical practice by providing a quantifiable but naturalistic measure of language. This tutorial will facilitate the integration of useful technologies into clinical practice and provide information regarding the application of CLSA data.

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