The Language Use Inventory for Young Children: A Parent-Report Measure of Pragmatic Language Development for 18- to 47-Month-Old Children Purpose: To demonstrate the internal reliability and discriminative validity of the Language Use Inventory for Young Children (LUI; D. K. O’Neill, 2002), a newly developed parent-report measure designed to assess pragmatic language development in 18–47-month-olds.Method: To examine internal reliability, the LUI was completed by mail by 177 parents ... Article/Report
Article/Report  |   February 2007
The Language Use Inventory for Young Children: A Parent-Report Measure of Pragmatic Language Development for 18- to 47-Month-Old Children
 
Author Notes
  • Contact author: Daniela O’Neill, Department of Psychology, University of Waterloo, 200 University Avenue West, Waterloo, Ontario Canada N2L 3G1. E-mail: doneill@uwaterloo.ca.
  • © 2007 American Speech-Language-Hearing Association
Article Information
Research Issues, Methods & Evidence-Based Practice / Language Disorders / Social Communication & Pragmatics Disorders / Language
Article/Report   |   February 2007
The Language Use Inventory for Young Children: A Parent-Report Measure of Pragmatic Language Development for 18- to 47-Month-Old Children
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, February 2007, Vol. 50, 214-228. doi:10.1044/1092-4388(2007/017)
History: Received May 11, 2005 , Revised October 27, 2005 , Accepted June 6, 2006
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, February 2007, Vol. 50, 214-228. doi:10.1044/1092-4388(2007/017)
History: Received May 11, 2005; Revised October 27, 2005; Accepted June 6, 2006
Web of Science® Times Cited: 19

Purpose: To demonstrate the internal reliability and discriminative validity of the Language Use Inventory for Young Children (LUI; D. K. O’Neill, 2002), a newly developed parent-report measure designed to assess pragmatic language development in 18–47-month-olds.

Method: To examine internal reliability, the LUI was completed by mail by 177 parents recruited from the University of Waterloo’s Centre for Child Studies database, 175 of whom completed the LUI again within 4 weeks to assess test–retest reliability. To examine discriminative validity, 49 parents of children awaiting assessment at a local speech-language clinic and 49 parents of typically developing children recruited from the Centre for Child Studies database and matched in age and sex to the clinic group completed the LUI.

Results: Alpha values for the subscales of the LUI were at or above acceptable levels (.80–.98), and steady growth in children’s pragmatic language development was demonstrated. The study of discriminant validity revealed sensitivity and specificity levels over 95%.

Conclusions: The LUI’s internal reliability and stability were strongly supported and its sensitivity and specificity in distinguishing between typically developing and language-delayed children exceeded even the most stringent criteria of 90% accuracy.

Acknowledgments
This work has been made possible by grants from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (1993–1999) and from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (2000–2005) to the author. Thanks are extended to the parents who participated in these studies; the director and staff of KidsAbility Child Development Centre in Waterloo, Ontario, Canada; and my undergraduate research assistants: Andrina Chen, Jane Topolovec, Mary Bender, Jennifer Pick, Kirsten Weeda, Tanya Kaefer, and Sejal Patel. Portions of the research reported have been presented at the 2001, 2002, and 2003 annual meetings of the Symposium on Research in Child Language Disorders, Madison, WI, and at the 2003 meeting of the Canadian Association of Speech Language Pathologists and Audiologists, St. John’s, NL, Canada. This work is dedicated to my mother, Maria Charlotte O’Neill, for all our conversations—big and small.
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