Using Standardized Tests to Inventory Consonant and Vowel Production: A Comparison of 11 Tests of Articulation and Phonology Purpose This report considered the validity of making conclusions about a child’s phonetic inventory (the sounds a child can and cannot produce spontaneously without a prior model or other stimulation) based on the data from standardized single-word tests of articulation or phonology. Method We evaluated the opportunities for ... Research Article
Research Article  |   October 01, 2010
Using Standardized Tests to Inventory Consonant and Vowel Production: A Comparison of 11 Tests of Articulation and Phonology
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Sarita L. Eisenberg
    Montclair State University, Montclair, NJ
  • Elaine R. Hitchcock
    Montclair State University, Montclair, NJ
  • Contact author: Sarita Eisenberg, Montclair State University, Communication Sciences and Disorders, 1 Normal Avenue, Upper Montclair, NJ 07473. E-mail: eisenbergs@mail.montclair.edu.
Article Information
Speech, Voice & Prosody / Research Articles
Research Article   |   October 01, 2010
Using Standardized Tests to Inventory Consonant and Vowel Production: A Comparison of 11 Tests of Articulation and Phonology
Language, Speech, and Hearing Services in Schools, October 2010, Vol. 41, 488-503. doi:10.1044/0161-1461(2009/08-0125)
History: Received November 18, 2008 , Revised April 1, 2009 , Accepted July 17, 2009
 
Language, Speech, and Hearing Services in Schools, October 2010, Vol. 41, 488-503. doi:10.1044/0161-1461(2009/08-0125)
History: Received November 18, 2008; Revised April 1, 2009; Accepted July 17, 2009
Web of Science® Times Cited: 11

Purpose This report considered the validity of making conclusions about a child’s phonetic inventory (the sounds a child can and cannot produce spontaneously without a prior model or other stimulation) based on the data from standardized single-word tests of articulation or phonology.

Method We evaluated the opportunities for production of word-initial consonants, word-final consonants, and vowels within the words included on 11 tests. Only words that met specific phonetic criteria (termed phonetically controlled words) were counted as opportunities for each consonant or vowel.

Results None of the tests provided sufficient coverage of consonants or vowels for establishing a phonetic inventory and making conclusions about the segments that a child can and cannot produce.

Conclusion Use of the data from a single standardized test of articulation or phonology would not be sufficient for completely inventorying a child’s consonant and vowel production and selecting targets for therapy. It is recommended that clinicians supplement test data by probing production in additional phonetically controlled words.

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS
The authors wish to thank Jessica Morreale and Roberta Stromberg for their assistance with preparation of the data for this report. Portions of this report were presented at the 2004 annual convention of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association in Philadelphia, PA, and the 2009 convention in New Orleans, LA.
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