Assessing Bilingual Children: How to Identify Developmental Language Disorder

1.5 hours
SKU: abad_6020 Categories: ,

Dr. Elizabeth Peña, University of California-Irvine

Tuesday, January 11th – 5-6:30pm CST

Course Type: Live Webinar

Getting diagnostic decisions right for students from diverse backgrounds is one of the most challenging things evaluators do. Did you know that we’ve identified a number of markers that can help you more accurately diagnose developmental language disorder (DLD) in bilingual populations?

In this presentation, we’ll discuss effective assessment protocols for bilinguals and demonstrate methods to combine information from two languages to make accurate clinical decisions. In addition, acknowledging the lack of bilingual instruments and bilingual clinicians, we will focus on the English portion of the bilingual DLD profile and its important contribution in the assessment process.

Bilinguistics – 0.15 ASHA CEUs (Intermediate Level)

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DISCLOSURE OF FINANCIAL RELATIONSHIPS: Dr. Elizabeth Peña is receiving financial compensation from Bilinguistics, Inc. for this presentation. She is the lead author of the BESA and receives royalties.  DISCLOSURE OF NONFINANCIAL RELATIONSHIPS: Dr. Elizabeth Peña does not have any non-financial relationships to disclose.

Diagnosis of developmental language disorder (DLD) in bilingual children is challenging. A focus on markers of DLD has moved us forward in better understanding how to construct measures to identify DLD in both monolingual and bilingual populations. This shift has resulted in better measures overall and some emerging measures for the bilingual population. Yet, there are continued challenges. We continue to have a lack of bilingual instruments and a lack of bilingual clinicians. While it is best practice to bilinguals in both of their languages, it is not always clear how to combine assessments to make diagnostic decisions. In this session, we will review markers of DLD to illustrate development of assessment protocols for bilinguals, we will demonstrate methods to combine information from two languages to make accurate clinical decisions, and finally, we will present information about the bilingual DLD profile with respect to English assessment.

Upon completion of this course, participants will be able to:

1. Identify 3 markers of impairment appropriate for identification of DLD in Spanish and English.
2. Describe how to combine assessment data from L1 and L2 for accurate diagnostic decisions.
3. Describe bilingual children’s language performance relative to their English exposure.

Outline/Timed Agenda

:5 mins Introduction and overview
:20 mins Markers of DLD in bilingual Spanish-English speakers, implications for test development
:15 mins Combining test data from two languages to improve diagnostic decisions
:20 mins DLD profile in English
:30 Moderated Q&A with Dr. Ellen Kester

Bio: Elizabeth Peña is a Professor and Associate Dean of Faculty Development & Diversity in the School of Education, at the University of California, Irvine. She is a certified Speech-Language Pathologist and is a Fellow of the American Speech Language Hearing Association. Her research focuses on two lines of inquiry that address the goal of differentiating language impairment from language difference. These two interrelated areas include dynamic assessment and semantic development in bilinguals. Dynamic assessment tests ability to learn new language skills. In contrast, standardized tests assess what children already know. The advantage of focusing on learning is that it greatly reduces bias by not assuming lack of knowledge is lack of ability. In the semantics area she is interested in how children from diverse linguistic backgrounds learn new language skills and how they lexicalize their conceptual knowledge across two languages. Through careful qualitative and description of bilingual children’s performance, she is currently focusing on potential similarities among typical monolingual and bilingual children as well as differences between typical and impaired bilingual or monolingual children. Outcomes of these lines of study have resulted in publication of the Dynamic Assessment and Intervention: Improving Children’s Narrative Abilities protocol and the Bilingual English Spanish Assessment test.