What are the criteria for participation?
1) 24-36 months of age
2) developmental delay/disability
3) 10 words or less
4) hearing/vision within normal limits
5) physical ability to reach/point/touch

What counts as a word?
Any consistent verbal sound combination that refers to an object/action/person.
For example, it can be a word approximation (e.g., ju/juice). Signs do not count.

Is it okay if my child uses sign language?
It is okay if child signs and we would acknowledge this communication during the
intervention; however, the intervention does not include use of signs.

What times are available for sessions?
Monday-Friday 8-5. We will do our best to accommodate all families’ schedules,
including evening sessions or an occasional Saturday session, if needed.

Can my child be involved in other therapies while in your Project?

What is the purpose of the Project?
To compare the effects of three language interventions on language development
and educational placement over the 18 month period. (Child is randomly assigned
to ONE of the three interventions.) To characterize the language development of
toddlers who have difficulty speaking, over time.

What is done during the assessment?
Baseline language, cognitive, familial, and adaptive behavior information is
obtained. We administer formal and informal developmental and language tests and
questionnaires. We also conduct observational sessions with parent and child in
three different settings (informal: home, GSU office; structured: Communication
Play at Urban Life building). Four to five sessions.

Why do you have three different observational sessions?
We want to get a good picture of your child’s communication skills. We therefore
observe interactions in informal and natural settings, GSU office and family
home. We also observe interactions in a more structured setting, Communication
Play. We conduct these observations at different intervals: at assessment for
baseline purposes and at post intervention, 3, 6, and 12 month follow-ups to
measure change over time.

What is done on the first day of assessment?
Consent with primary investigator, Dr. MaryAnn Romski and Melissa Cheslock. Administration of the
Mullen Scales of Early Learning.

How long do sessions last?
Assessment: 1-2 hours; intervention: 30 minute sessions two times/week
Is there a control group?
No. All children receive language intervention.

What are the differences between the three interventions?
1) Traditional language intervention received from most Speech/Language
Pathologists (SLP) in the community.
2) Intervention with focus on communication interactions, typically used by SLP
with knowledge about early communication and severe disablilties.
3) Intervention with focus on communication interactions, typically used only by
a “master” clinician.

What are the similarities between the interactions?
1) primary component – parent training on language intervention
2) all include strategies to facilitate language/communication development
3) developmentally/play-based, three routines of play, book, and snack

Who does the assessments/intervention?
All assessments are conducted by a licensed SLP with 10 years of experience in
working with young children with communication difficulties.

Our two interventionists have BS degrees with a background in either psychology
or communication disorders. They are trained by our staff SLP to conduct all
interventions. The SLP provides parent training regarding the language
intervention during sessions. Starting week 5 of the intervention sessions, the
parent begins implementing the intervention, along with the interventionist, to
learn hands-on how to facilitate their child’s language development.

How many participants will you have in the Project?

How long has the Project been running?
We began seeing families in the fall of 2000 and will continue to recruit
through August 2005. The grant is funded for five years (February 2000 to
February 2005).


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