Stability of Measures From Children's Interviews: The Effects of Time, Sample Length, and Topic Purpose The purpose of this study was to examine the reliability of, and sources of variability in, language measures from interviews collected from young school-age children. Method Two 10-min interviews were collected from 20 at-risk kindergarten children by an examiner using a standardized set of questions. Test–retest reliability ... Research Article
Research Article  |   August 01, 2013
Stability of Measures From Children's Interviews: The Effects of Time, Sample Length, and Topic
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • John Heilmann
    University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee
  • Lindsay DeBrock
    Wake County Schools, Cary, NC
  • T. Chris Riley-Tillman
    University of Missouri, Columbia
  • Correspondence to John Heilmann: heilmanj@uwm.edu
  • Editor: Carol Scheffner Hammer
    Editor: Carol Scheffner Hammer×
  • Associate Editor: Lynne Hewitt
    Associate Editor: Lynne Hewitt×
Article Information
Research Issues, Methods & Evidence-Based Practice / Language Disorders / Research Articles
Research Article   |   August 01, 2013
Stability of Measures From Children's Interviews: The Effects of Time, Sample Length, and Topic
American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, August 2013, Vol. 22, 463-475. doi:10.1044/1058-0360(2012/11-0035)
History: Received March 29, 2011 , Revised October 12, 2011 , Accepted November 1, 2012
 
American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, August 2013, Vol. 22, 463-475. doi:10.1044/1058-0360(2012/11-0035)
History: Received March 29, 2011; Revised October 12, 2011; Accepted November 1, 2012
Web of Science® Times Cited: 4

Purpose The purpose of this study was to examine the reliability of, and sources of variability in, language measures from interviews collected from young school-age children.

Method Two 10-min interviews were collected from 20 at-risk kindergarten children by an examiner using a standardized set of questions. Test–retest reliability coefficients were calculated for 8 language measures. Generalizability theory (G-theory) analyses were completed to document the variability introduced into the measures from the child, session, sample length, and topic.

Results Significant and strong reliability correlation coefficients were observed for most of the language sample measures. The G-theory analyses revealed that most of the variance in the language measures was attributed to the child. Session, sample length, and topic accounted for negligible amounts of variance in most of the language measures.

Conclusion Measures from interviews were reliable across sessions, and the sample length and topic did not have a substantial impact on the reliability of the language measures. Implications regarding the clinical feasibility of language sample analysis for assessment and progress monitoring are discussed.

Acknowledgment
Special thanks to the children who participated in this study and to Debbie Metcalf of the Pitt County Schools for her assistance in recruiting the participants. Additional thanks to Laura Ball, Amy Briesch, Marianna Walker, and Kevin O'Brien for their input on this study.
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