Measuring Severity of Involvement in Speech Delay Segmental and Whole-Word Measures Research Article
Research Article  |   November 01, 2005
Measuring Severity of Involvement in Speech Delay
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Peter Flipsen, Jr.
    University of Tennessee, Knoxville
  • Jill B. Hammer
    University of Tennessee, Knoxville
  • Kathryn M. Yost
    University of Tennessee, Knoxville
  • Contact author: Peter Flipsen Jr., Department of Audiology and Speech Pathology, University of Tennessee, Knoxville, 425 South Stadium Hall, Knoxville, TN37996.
    Contact author: Peter Flipsen Jr., Department of Audiology and Speech Pathology, University of Tennessee, Knoxville, 425 South Stadium Hall, Knoxville, TN37996.×
  • Corresponding author: E-mail: pflipsen@utk.edu
Article Information
Speech, Voice & Prosodic Disorders / Research Articles
Research Article   |   November 01, 2005
Measuring Severity of Involvement in Speech Delay
American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, November 2005, Vol. 14, 298-312. doi:10.1044/1058-0360(2005/029)
History: Received October 21, 2004 , Revised May 24, 2005 , Accepted August 3, 2005
 
American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, November 2005, Vol. 14, 298-312. doi:10.1044/1058-0360(2005/029)
History: Received October 21, 2004; Revised May 24, 2005; Accepted August 3, 2005
Web of Science® Times Cited: 14

Purpose: This study examined whether any of a series of segmental and whole-word measures of articulatory competence captured more of the variance in impressionistic ratings of severity of involvement in speech delay. It also examined whether knowing the age of the child affected severity ratings.

Method: Ten very experienced speech-language pathologists rated severity of involvement from conversational speech samples obtained from 17 children with delayed speech. The ratings were then correlated with the candidate measures. The ratings by those who knew the ages of the children were also compared with the ratings by those who did not.

Results: The severity ratings showed considerable variability. Ratings from 6 clinicians who largely agreed with each other (a "tin standard" group) were significantly associated with several of the candidate measures. Clinicians appeared to pay attention to number, type, and consistency of errors when rating severity. They also attended to both segmental and whole-word levels. Knowledge of the children’s ages did not appear to affect the ratings.

Conclusions: The observed variability in the severity ratings raises significant questions about their usefulness. Objective measures such as some of those examined herein offer potential as more valid and reliable severity indexes.

Acknowledgments
Preparation of this article was supported in part by the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders Grant DC00496 (Lawrence D. Shriberg, principal investigator). Many thanks to the following for their assistance with this project: Vicki Barnes, Lisa Edick, Sue Besel Hume, Deborah King, Robin Dinnes Kloos, Joan Kwiatkowski, Ann Michael, Maria Munoz, Jennifer Owen, Patrick Plyler, Tim Saltuklaroglu, Carol Sheridan, Sara Thelin, Daniel Valentine, Teresa Vaughn, Patricia Webb, and Lynn Williams. Thanks also to Lawrence Shriberg for very insightful comments on earlier versions of this article.
Order a Subscription
Pay Per View
Entire American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology content & archive
24-hour access
This Article
24-hour access