Developing a Clinician-Friendly Aphasia Test Purpose: The Kentucky Aphasia Test (KAT) is an objective measure of language functioning for persons with aphasia. This article describes materials, administration, and scoring of the KAT; presents the rationale for development of test items; reports information from a pilot study; and discusses the role of the KAT in ... Clinical Focus
Clinical Focus  |   November 2007
Developing a Clinician-Friendly Aphasia Test
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Robert C. Marshall
    University of Kentucky, Lexington
  • Heather Harris Wright
    Arizona State University, Tempe
  • Contact author: Robert C. Marshall, Department of Rehabilitation Sciences, University of Kentucky, 900 S. Limestone (CTW 124F), Lexington, KY 40536-0200. E-mail: rcmarsh@uky.edu.
  • © 2007 American Speech-Language-Hearing AssociationAmerican Speech-Language-Hearing Association
Article Information
Language Disorders / Aphasia / Clinical Focus
Clinical Focus   |   November 2007
Developing a Clinician-Friendly Aphasia Test
American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, November 2007, Vol. 16, 295-315. doi:10.1044/1058-0360(2007/035)
History: Received October 18, 2006 , Revised January 26, 2007 , Accepted May 15, 2007
 
American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, November 2007, Vol. 16, 295-315. doi:10.1044/1058-0360(2007/035)
History: Received October 18, 2006; Revised January 26, 2007; Accepted May 15, 2007
Web of Science® Times Cited: 3

Purpose: The Kentucky Aphasia Test (KAT) is an objective measure of language functioning for persons with aphasia. This article describes materials, administration, and scoring of the KAT; presents the rationale for development of test items; reports information from a pilot study; and discusses the role of the KAT in aphasia assessment.

Method: The KAT has 3 parallel test batteries, KAT-1, KAT-2, and KAT-3. Each battery contains the same orientation test and 6 subtests, each with 10 items, assessing expressive and receptive language functions. Subtests for KAT-1, KAT-2, and KAT-3 systematically increase in difficulty so that it is possible to assess individuals with severe, moderate, and mild aphasia, respectively. The KAT was administered to 38 participants with aphasia and 31 non-brain-damaged (NBD) participants.

Results: Results with the KAT clearly differentiated the language performance of individuals with and without aphasia. NBD participants made few errors, and overall scores on the test for individuals with aphasia were rarely within 1 SD of the NBD group. Performance of the participants with aphasia administered KAT-1, KAT-2, and KAT-3 suggested that the 3 versions of the test represent a hierarchy of difficulty.

Conclusions: The KAT remains in its early stages of development. However, it does appear to meet the requirements for a “clinician-friendly” aphasia test and, as such, offers a rapid, convenient means of obtaining an objective score to determine changes in language functioning during the early postonset period.

Acknowledgments
The authors appreciate the assistance of Tamara Cranfill, University of Kentucky; Donald B. Freed, California State University, Fresno; Patrick Coppens, Plattsburgh State University of New York; and Kathryn Chezik, Marshall University; and their respective graduate students for their help in collecting data for this project.
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