Master of Science (M.S.)
Degree Granting Department
Communication Sciences and Disorders
R. M. Barker, Ph.D.
Maria R. Brea, Ph.D., CCC-SLP
Kyna S. Betancourt, Ph.D., CCC-SLP
Stefan A. Frisch, Ph.D.
Augmentative and Alternative Communication, Bilingual Children, Complex Communication Needs, Dynamic Assessment, Literacy, Phonological Awareness
Literacy development in Spanish-speaking children is a growing concern in the United States (Invernizzi, 2009). Phonological awareness is a predictor of literacy achievement in most alphabetic languages (Anthony et al., 2011; Davison & Brea-Spahn, 2012; Durgunoğlu, Nagy, & Hancin-Bhatt, 1993; Goikoetxea, 2005). Bilingual children with complex communication needs (CCN) demonstrate increased difficulties in speaking, reading, and writing, making learning two languages a difficult task (Toppelberg, Snow, & Tager-Flusberg, 1999). Literacy attainment in bilingual individuals who have CCN is important to improve their overall language development and communication interaction skills (Harrison-Harris, 2002). A valid and reliable phonological awareness assessment that does not require speech is needed in order to provide appropriate instruction and address desired literacy goals (Barker, Bridges, & Saunders, 2014).
The goal of this study is to describe pilot data from the Dynamic Assessment of Phonemic Awareness in Spanish (DAPA-S), a new dynamic phonological awareness assessment that does not require speech responses, with children from Latin American Spanish-speaking backgrounds, in order to determine its construct validity. DAPA-S was administered over the course of one to three sessions to ten participants (six males and four females). Participants also received the Identificación de letras y palabras (Letter-Word Identification; LWID) subscale from the Woodcock-Muñoz Language Survey–Revised (WMLS-R; Woodcock, Muñoz- Sandoval, Ruef, & Alvarado, 2005) as an emergent reading skill task and three subtests from the Test of Phonological Sensitivity in Spanish (TOPSS; Brea, Silliman, Bahr, & Bryant, 2003):letter-name and letter-sound, elision, and rapid automatized naming (RAN) as assessments of phonological awareness.
To evaluate concurrent validity, Pearson correlations and bootstrapped 95% confidence intervals were calculated between the DAPA-S total score and the measures of phonological awareness from the TOPSS. The DAPA-S demonstrated strong and significant correlations with elision, RAN, and the letter-sound subtests rs = –.67 to .87, ps = .00 to .03. These results indicated that the DAPA-S likely measured the same construct as the other measures of phonological awareness from the TOPSS.
To evaluate convergent validity, Pearson correlations and bootstrapped 95% confidence intervals were calculated between LWID of the WMLS-R and the DAPA-S total score. The DAPA-S demonstrated a strong and significant correlation, r = .75, p < .05.
The data suggest a high degree of both concurrent and convergent validity, as many of the conventional measures of phonological awareness and emergent reading were significantly correlated with the DAPA-S, including letter-sound, RAN, and LWID. Overall, the pattern of results suggests that the DAPA-S may be a reliable and valid tool for measurement of phonological awareness in Spanish.
Scholar Commons Citation
Loreti, Bianca Angelica, "Validity of a Nonspeech Dynamic Assessment of Phonological Awareness in Children from Spanish-speaking Backgrounds" (2015). USF Tampa Graduate Theses and Dissertations.