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SPED 311 Assessment Review Project

Name: Emily Frazier

Date: April 28, 2015
School/Setting: Greens Prairie/PPCD

How does this project contribute to your knowledge about assessment?

This project has taught me how to view a test. Throughout this semester, I
have learned about how to assess and create different tests. During this project, I
was able to analyze a test and put my knowledge to work. I have learned that there
are many factors make an assessment good or bad. I am able to read, analyze, and
fully understand whether or not a test should be administered to my students. Even
if a student is getting assessed with a test I am unfamiliar with, I will have the skills
to figure out if this is a proper test for that student. I am glad to know all the
different components of a test because this will help me in my future teaching.

On my honor, as an Aggie, I have neither given nor received

unauthorized aid on this academic work.


Practical Evaluation
Description of Test:
This test review will be analyzing the CELF test, 5th edition. The test CELF stands for
Clinical Evaluation of Language Fundamentals. The test is used to test children 5-21 years of
age. The authors are Elizabeth H. Wiig, Eleanor Semel, and Wayne A. Secord. Pearson published
this test and copyrighted it in 2013. The complete kit of the CELF test includes Examiner
Manual, Technical Manual, a set of 2 stimulus books, a set of 2 reading and writing supplements,
record forms 1 and 2, and an Observational Rating Scale (ORS) and costs $649 or $699 to
include a case. The test can be administered by an SLP, a school psychologist, a SPED teacher,
or a diagnostician that have been trained and are experienced in administration and interpretation
of standardized tests. CELF is used to evaluate a childs language performance. The test will
combine core subtests with supplementary subtests to get an accurate comprehensive assessment
of the childs language performance.

Discussion of Test Manual:

The Examiner and Technical Manual are easy to navigate and are extremely helpful when
trying to learn about the test. The Examiner Manual was very detailed for the user. It had a
complete table of contents and index with many sub categories within both of these to help the
user locate the specific place they need in the book. The Examiners Manual is a lengthy spiral
bound book. The reason it is lengthy is because it has an introduction to each of the CELF-5 subtests as well as detailed information about the testing process, and how to properly use the ORS.
An addition that could be made to the manual is to lengthen the summaries at the end of

chapters. The chapters are so long that it is hard to compile the information and make sense of
what happened in the chapter.
The Technical Manual contains detailed information about the purpose, design, and
development of the CELF test. This manual also presents the technical characteristics and
evidence of reliability and validity of the CELF. The information was valuable but also took a
while to understand because the terminology wasnt simple. It would be very hard for a
researcher to come in and understand what the authors were trying to convey. Each chapter had
summaries at the end, but they would tend to be short and hard to understand. To fix this, the
author could make the summaries a little longer and easier to understand the main concepts that
were being conveyed in the chapter.

Discussion of Test Materials

The test materials include 2 stimulus books and 2 reading and writing supplements. The
stimulus books both have a hard cover with durable sheets inside them. The two stimulus books
are spiral bound mini books with an easel and includes tabbed divider pages for easy
identification of tests. The tabbed divider pages are color coded to match the tests in the record
forms. As you flip the stimulus pages from front to back, the visual stimulus faces the student.
This means that the stimulus books fold into a tepee so the administrator can see what she should
be instructing and the student can see the pictures. Tests names and items are abbreviated at the
bottom right corner of each stimulus page. Stimulus Book 1 tests sentence comprehension,
linguistic concepts, word structure, word classes, and formulated sentences. Stimulus Book 2
tests following directions, sentence assembly, semantic relationships, and reading
comprehension. The stimulus books are pretty bland. For a test where the child is actively

pointing at pictures, the pictures are simple and not appealing. The actual test is different for
each subtest. Although the subtests are different, the whole test is done with the stimulus books.
The test materials main goal is to test the language performance of the student.
The reading and writing supplements include reading comprehension and structured
writing tests. The supplements include perforated pages that are removed for the student to write
on, as well as a place to score the students work. Supplement 1 is for students from 8-10 years
old and supplement 2 is for students from 11-21 years old.
The test also calls for an observation form to be filled out before the actual administration
of the test. This observation form needs to be filled out by the teacher, parent, and student. It is a
starting point, so the examiner knows what to expect. The form is formatted as one sheet, printed
on both sides, and bound on a tear-off pad. There is a shaded place on the form to compile the
ratings. The observation form is broken off in four sections; listening, speaking, reading, and
writing. The form has question such as; Has trouble writing down thoughts. It is then recorded
as; never, sometimes, often, or always.

Discussion of Test Protocols

There are two different record sheets for the test. The first record sheet is for all the
subtests for child ages 5-8. The second record sheet is for children 9-21. Both of the record
sheets contain demonstration items, trial items, test items, and space for recording responses and
test results. A detailed item analysis table is presented with each test to aid in determining a
students error patterns, area of extension testing, and potential targets for intervention and
follow ups. The first two pages for each form are designed for recording summary information.
On the last page, there is a checklist to complete after the child has completed at least three

activities. These pages are all tear off pages so you can maintain scoring information. The test
protocols are clear but could be more durable. The record sheets are on light paper that could be
easily torn. It would be better if the forms were in a binder or on cardstock.

Discussion of Test Items

The materials the examiner needs to conduct the test are the stimulus books, recording
forms, and reading and writing supplements. The examiner will initiate the test. Different age
groups have different starting points on the subtests. For this review, the focus was on the tests
given to children ages 5-8. The first subtest is Sentence Comprehension, where the student has
to interpret spoken sentences and select the pictures that match with what was said in the
sentence. The second subtest is Linguistic Concepts, where the student must interpret spoken
directions and identify mentioned objects from an array of pictures. The third subtest is Word
Structure. This is where the student must complete a sentence with the targeted structure. The
next subtest is Word Classes, where the student chooses two words that are related. The final
subtest in Stimulus Book 1 is Formulated Sentence. In this subtest, the student will formulate a
sentence about the visual stimuli presented using target words or phrases.
The first subtest in the second stimulus book is Following Directions. Following
Directions is where the student is given verbal direction to identify certain shapes in a specific
order. Next is the subtest Recalling Sentences, where the student will imitate the sentence
spoken to them. During the next subtest Understanding Spoken Paragraphs, the student will be
tested on auditory, comprehension, memory, and logic. Finally the student is tested by the subtest
Pragmatics Profile. This subtest assesses whether a student can identify verbal and nonverbal

pragmatic deficits that could negatively impact communication in both a social and academic
The administration of this test is very easy. It should only take 30-60 minutes. All of the
directions are written out for the examiner in the manuals, record form, and stimulus books. As
long as a person is trained, they should be able to give this test easily. The scoring of the test is
straightforward to score. Everything in the test was complete and usable.

Technical Evaluation
The norms were collected in March of 2012 and continued through December of 2012.
The research was conducted to collect normative data and gather reliability and validity
evidence. Normative scores came from 3000 representatives of the U.S. population from
individuals who are ages 5-21 and also are English speaking. Because the norms were collected
from those who are English speaking, this test may not transition to Texas all too well. Texas has
a high percentage of people who only speak Spanish and this test does not cover that population.
The geographic breakdown included 47 states in the following areas: 36.7% South, 24.2% West,
23.8% Midwest, and 15.3% Northeast. The CELF-5 reports scaled scores for 14 tests, and
standard scores for the composites: the Core Language Score, the Receptive Language Index, the
Expressive Language Index, the Language Context Index, the Language Structure Index, and the
Language Memory Index. The norms assessed a wide number of populations including 11% of
individuals diagnosed with a disability. This percent was described as low in the manuals;
however, compared to other tests, this is a very high and acceptable percentage.

The Test Manual defined the reliability of a test rests on accuracy, consistency, and
stability of test scores across situations. The reliability of the CELF was determined by using the
test-retest stability, internal consistency, and inters corer reliability. The sample was stratified by
age, sex, race/ethnicity, geographic region, parent/caregiver education level. Standardization
sample was stratified according to the following four parent/caregiver education level categories:
0-11 represents 0-11 years of school; 12 represents 12 years of school, or a high school diploma
OR GED; 13-15 represents 13-15 years of school, or 1-3 years of college or technical school;
16+represents 16 or more years of school, or 4 or more years of college.
Data indicates the average reliability coefficients of the CELF tests for the normative
sample range from .75 (structured writing) to .98 (pragmatics profile.) For the linguistic
concepts, word classes, following directions, recalling sentences, sentence assembly, and
pragmatics profile tests, the average coefficients range from .90 to .98. Coefficients for the
sentence comprehension, word structure, formulated sentences, understanding spoken
paragraphs, word definitions, semantic relationships, and reading comprehension tests range
from .85 to .89, and then structured writing was .75. The following are the index scores found.
Ranging from .95 to .96, the average reliability coefficients are excellent for all of the composite
scores: core language score, receptive language index score, expressive language index score,
language content index score, language structure index score, and language memory index score.
The correlation coefficients of the composite score are higher than the reliability coefficients of
individual tests that compose the index scales. The difference is expected because the index
scores summarize the students performance on broader sample of language abilities than is
tested in a single test. All of these averages prove the test to be reliable.

The validity for the CELF test is discussed based on test content, response process, and
internal structure. Evidence of validity was gathered through literature review, users feedback,
and expert review and suggestions about the language areas and skills that the test should
address, as well as the breadth and appropriateness of the test and item coverage. The test looked
at validity by response process and internal structure. Response process is how the language and
cognitive skills are used by the examinees to accomplish specific tasks that are presented. The
test measured the childs semantic knowledge which allowed the clinician to understand the
childs linguistic capability. Internal structure refers to the degree that the test measured what it is
supposed to measure. Subtests at the younger age were more correlated to each other than the
subtests at the higher age.
The CELF-5 was compared to the CELF-4 in order to measure concurrent validity. In
these findings, it was determined that the scores between the two were highly correlated with the
CELF-5 having slightly higher mean scores. Another aspect concerning the difference between
the two editions is that the CELF-5 is more sensitive to language disorders and learning
disabilities (reading and writing) and ASD. The results of the studies support the structure of the

This review of the CELF-5 was very organized and insightful. I found that the
explanation of each subtest was extremely helpful. Each subtest was listed along with the age
group it pertained to, the purpose, and the format. This information was listed in an easy to read
graph and would be beneficial to anyone looking for more information about the CELF-5. The

rest of the review covered the norms, reliability, and validity of the test. The section on validity
was very interesting to read because it didnt necessarily correlate with what I read in the
manuals. This review did not see the CELF-5 as a valid test based off of the spectrum bias in the
sample, the invalid reference standards, and insufficient comparison tests. When reviewing the
CELF-5, what I determined from the validity was the opposite. Because of the difference
between this review and my own review of the test, I went back and studied the validity section
once again. I came to the same conclusion that the CELF-5 is valid.
The review discussed in length the following biases; Linguistic Bias , English as a
Second Language , Dialectal Variations , Socioeconomic Status Bias, Prior
Knowledge/Experience, Cultural Bias, Attention and Memory, and Motor/Sensory Impairment.
This section would be helpful to the person administering the test because it lays out what the
evaluator needs to be personally aware of. Minus the confusion with the validity section, I found
that the rest of the review was helpful in determining the true meaning of all that I had read. The
summaries of the sections of the test were clear and concise.

The CELF-5 test is a newer edition; therefore, there were not any reviews posted for that
edition. This section of my test review will be based off of a review of the fourth edition of the
CELF test (CELF-4.)
This review was clear on the descriptions of the test, norms, validity, and reliability. A
description of the test was provided and compared to the CELF-3. The CELF-4 was redesigned
to better fit specific state and federal laws as well as help aid in the facilitation of IEPs. This
review pointed out two important features of the CELF-4 test that also appear in the CELF-5.

The first feature is that the test has age-specific start points. Depending on the age of the
examinee, the evaluator can begin testing at the approximate level of that individuals language
skills. The second feature is that the test has performance based discontinue rules. If the
examinee is not performing to a certain point, the evaluator can minimize the test time and
discontinue the test.
The validity of the CELF-4 was also analyzed in this review. The review warned
the readers to be cautious of the CELF-4 not being applicable to children with hearing loss.
These children scored much lower on the test. Sign language was not used during the
administering of this test which could have led to confusion on the task requirements and
materials. No norms are available for the population of children with hearing loss and the
CELF-4 has not been comprehensively validated for this population. These inconsistencies in the
interpretation of results are reason to be extremely cautious when administering the CELF-4 to
children who have hearing loss.
Although this review was for the CELF-4, I was able to further compare the
changes made throughout the editions as well as learn more about the CELF-4. This review was
easy to read and understand. The similarities and differences were pointed out between the
CELF-3 and CELF-4. The review noted that the CELF-4 is significantly better than the past
editions. This test satisfies the needs of the administrators to accurately evaluate a childs skills
in language and communication.

Crowley, D. (n.d.). (2014) Test Review: Clinical Evaluation of Language Fundamentals Fifth
Edition. The LEADERS Project.
Samar, V.J. (2009). Test review of Clinical Evaluation of Language Fundamentals (4th
ed.). Mental Measurements Yearbook,
Retrieved April 14, 2015.
Wiig, E., Semel, E., & Secord, W. (2013). Clinical Evaluation of Language Fundamentals:
Examiner's Manual (5th ed.). Bloomington, MN: Pearson.
Wiig, E., Semel, E., & Secord, W. (2013). Clinical Evaluation of Language Fundamentals:
Technical Manual (5th ed.). Bloomington, MN: Pearson.