Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research
With no existing gold standard for comparison, challenges arise for establishing the validity of a new standardized Mandarin language assessment normed in mainland China.
A new assessment, Diagnostic Receptive and Expressive Assessment of Mandarin (DREAM), was normed with a stratified sample of 969 children ages 2;6 (years;months) to 7;11 in multiple urban and nonurban regions in northern and southern China. In this study of 230 children, the sensitivity and specificity of DREAM were examined against an a priori judgment of disorders. External validity was assessed using 2 indices of language production for different age groups.
External validity was assessed against spontaneous language indices (correlation range: r = .6–.7; all ps < .01) and narrative indices (overall: r = .45, p < .01). Sensitivity (.73) and specificity (.82) of DREAM are moderate to good using a priori judgment as the standard. The values improved to .95 and .82 when spontaneous language and narratives were added to a priori judgment to define typicality. Divergent validity was moderate with nonlinguistic indices.
DREAM holds promise as a diagnostic test of Mandarin language impairment for children aged 2;6 to 7;11.
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Liu, Xueman Lucy; de Villiers, Jill; Ning, Chunyan; Rolfhus, Eric; Hutchings, Teresa; Lee, Wendy; Jiang, Fan; and Zhang, Yi Wen, "Research to Establish the Validity, Reliability, and Clinical Utility of a Comprehensive Language Assessment of Mandarin" (2017). Philosophy: Faculty Publications, Smith College, Northampton, MA.