The Revision Decision: Is Change Always Good? A Comparison of CELF–R and CELF–3 Test Scores in Children With Language Impairment, Focal Brain Damage, and Typical Development Purpose The Clinical Evaluation of Language Fundamentals (CELF) is a widely used, comprehensive test battery that assesses language in school-age children and adolescents. The CELF–R (E. Semel, E. H. Wiig, & W. Secord, 1987) was updated to the CELF–3 (E. Semel, E. H. Wiig, & W. A. Secord, 1995) in ... Research Article
Research Article  |   July 01, 2007
The Revision Decision: Is Change Always Good? A Comparison of CELF–R and CELF–3 Test Scores in Children With Language Impairment, Focal Brain Damage, and Typical Development
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Angela O. Ballantyne
    University of California, San Diego, School of Medicine
  • Amy M. Spilkin
    University of California, San Diego, School of Medicine
  • Doris A. Trauner
    University of California, San Diego, School of Medicine
  • Contact author: Angela Ballantyne, University of California, San Diego, Department of Neurosciences, 9500 Gilman Drive, #0935, La Jolla, CA 92093-0935. E-mail: aballant@crl.ucsd.edu.
Article Information
Development / Language Disorders / Attention, Memory & Executive Functions / Traumatic Brain Injury / Research Articles
Research Article   |   July 01, 2007
The Revision Decision: Is Change Always Good? A Comparison of CELF–R and CELF–3 Test Scores in Children With Language Impairment, Focal Brain Damage, and Typical Development
Language, Speech, and Hearing Services in Schools, July 2007, Vol. 38, 182-189. doi:10.1044/0161-1461(2007/019)
History: Received March 22, 2006 , Revised June 21, 2006 , Accepted September 5, 2006
 
Language, Speech, and Hearing Services in Schools, July 2007, Vol. 38, 182-189. doi:10.1044/0161-1461(2007/019)
History: Received March 22, 2006; Revised June 21, 2006; Accepted September 5, 2006
Web of Science® Times Cited: 7

Purpose The Clinical Evaluation of Language Fundamentals (CELF) is a widely used, comprehensive test battery that assesses language in school-age children and adolescents. The CELF–R (E. Semel, E. H. Wiig, & W. Secord, 1987) was updated to the CELF–3 (E. Semel, E. H. Wiig, & W. A. Secord, 1995) in 1995. The goal of the present study was to compare scores and evaluate the diagnostic utility of the CELF–R and CELF–3 in 2 clinical populations and a typically developing control group.

Method The present study compared CELF–R and CELF–3 test scores of 107 children with language impairment (LI), 54 children with early focal brain damage (FL), and 90 controls.

Results All 3 groups demonstrated significantly better performance on the CELF–3 than on the CELF–R. LI children scored in the moderately-to-severely impaired range on the CELF–R, but in the mildly-to-moderately impaired range on the CELF–3. FL children went from being mildly-to-moderately impaired on the CELF–R to within normal limits on the CELF–3. Controls went from the average range on the CELF–R to the high average range on the CELF–3.

Conclusion This study is important for professionals who administer language tests and/or use language testing results to recommend appropriate school placements, additional services, and/or interventions. Although psychometric tests are frequently revised, it is not always the case that a revised version has improved diagnostic utility.

ACKNOWLEDGMENT
Our sincerest appreciation is extended to all of the children and their parents whose participation was vital to this research. This project was funded by the National Institutes of Health (NINDS 5-P50-NS22343).
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