Researchers find new way to assess communication of people with severe disabilities
(Medical Xpress) -- A team of researchers led by University of Kansas scientist Nancy Brady has developed a new way to assess the communication capability of individuals with severe intellectual and developmental disabilities who often communicate with gestures, body movements and vocalizations instead of spoken words. The study was published in the February 2012 American Journal of Speech Language Pathology.
The Communications Complexity Scale (CCS) is a tool for researchers and clinicians to measure the communication development of both children and adults with disabilities as diverse as autism spectrum disorders, deaf-blindness and cerebral palsy for the purposes of assessment and intervention.
Understanding the communication status of individuals with severe intellectual and developmental disabilities is difficult because they often communicate in ways that may not be readily recognized, even by clinicians, said Brady, who pioneered a communication assessment and intervention for children with deaf-blindness.
The CCS is based on the well-established continuum of presymbolic stages of communication development in typically developing children from birth, beginning with an infant crying or smiling, followed by eye gaze, gesturing and vocalizing directed at another person, to using symbolic communication, typically, spoken words.
These developmental changes have been studied and documented for individuals with different types of disabilities, according to Brady, and were incorporated into the CCS.
Children with ASD infrequently use gestures, for example, while those with Down syndrome often gesture to communicate. Individuals with deaf-blindness may show interest in objects but have difficulty showing shared interest with another person, a milestone in communication development, through eye gaze or gesturing.
A major goal of the CCS was a measure that would provide a summary score that would reflect an individuals current status on the communications continuum, rather than a particular chronological age or other comparison group, a drawback of many existing measures.
Additionally, the measure was designed to be more sensitive to change over time as well as to an individuals response to behavioral and medication interventions.
The CCS has 11 levels of behaviors associated with the stages of communication development. It was developed, tested and refined by two teams of researchers at the University of Kansas and a third at the University of Washington. The study focused on three groups of 178 participants who represented a variety of ages, diagnoses, exposure to languages (other than English), motor and sensory abilities, including ASD, Down syndrome and motor impairments. None could express more than 20 words of speech, signs or symbols.
The CCS scores were compared to those of standardized tests of language and were highly correlated. They were also compared to reports from family members and other caregivers. Scores from informant reports tended to place children at higher levels of communication than did the CCS scores.
The research was supported by grants from the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health & Human Development and the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders.
Provided by University of Kansas
- Bilingualism doesn?t hamper language abilities of children with autism: research Oct 06, 2011 | not rated yet | 0
- New study shows half of children with autism can be accurately diagnosed at close to 1 year of age Jul 03, 2007 | not rated yet | 0
- Study explores autism co-occurring conditions and diagnosis change Jan 24, 2012 | not rated yet | 0
- Children with autism benefit from early, intensive therapy Sep 28, 2011 | not rated yet | 0
- Deaf children use hands to invent own way of communicating Feb 15, 2009 | not rated yet | 0
- Motion perception revisited: High Phi effect challenges established motion perception assumptions Apr 23, 2013 | 3 / 5 (2) | 2
- Anything you can do I can do better: Neuromolecular foundations of the superiority illusion (Update) Apr 02, 2013 | 4.5 / 5 (11) | 5
- The visual system as economist: Neural resource allocation in visual adaptation Mar 30, 2013 | 5 / 5 (2) | 9
- Separate lives: Neuronal and organismal lifespans decoupled Mar 27, 2013 | 4.9 / 5 (8) | 0
- Sizing things up: The evolutionary neurobiology of scale invariance Feb 28, 2013 | 4.8 / 5 (10) | 14
Classical and Quantum Mechanics via Lie algebras
Apr 15, 2011 I'd like to open a discussion thread for version 2 of the draft of my book ''Classical and Quantum Mechanics via Lie algebras'', available online at http://lanl.arxiv.org/abs/0810.1019 , and for the...
- More from Physics Forums - Independent Research
More news stories
As the world prepares for what may be the next pandemic strain of influenza virus, in the H7N9 bird flu, a new UC Irvine study reveals that the 2009 H1N1 swine flu pandemic was deadliest for people under the age of 65, while ...
Diseases, Conditions, Syndromes 10 hours ago | not rated yet | 0
The World Health Organization says the Horn of Africa is experiencing an outbreak of polio with cases confirmed in Kenya and Somalia.
Diseases, Conditions, Syndromes 11 hours ago | not rated yet | 0
A man who had contracted the coronavirus has died in Saudi Arabia, raising the death toll in the kingdom from the SARS-like virus to 17, the health ministry announced on its website on Wednesday.
Diseases, Conditions, Syndromes 11 hours ago | not rated yet | 0
A new approach for immunizing against influenza elicited a more potent immune response and broader protection than the currently licensed seasonal influenza vaccines when tested in mice and ferrets. The vaccine ...
Diseases, Conditions, Syndromes 12 hours ago | not rated yet | 0 |
Patients with underlying heart failure are more likely to experience adverse outcomes from mild hypothyroidism, according to a recent study accepted for publication in The Endocrine Society's Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & ...
Diseases, Conditions, Syndromes 14 hours ago | not rated yet | 0
Swiss scientists reveal the mechanism responsible for aging hidden deep within mitochondria—and dramatically slow it down in worms by administering antibiotics to the young.
14 hours ago | 4.9 / 5 (7) | 0 |
Existing research shows that bicyclists who wear helmets have an 88 percent lower risk of brain injury, but researchers at Boston Children's Hospital found that simply having bicycle helmet laws in place showed a 20 percent ...
3 hours ago | not rated yet | 0
Researchers from Queen Mary, University of London have led the largest sequencing study of human disease to date, investigating the genetic basis of six autoimmune diseases.
14 hours ago | 4.7 / 5 (3) | 0 |
Until now, little was scientifically known about the human potential to cultivate compassion—the emotional state of caring for people who are suffering in a way that motivates altruistic behavior.
11 hours ago | 5 / 5 (2) | 2 |
(HealthDay)—Migraines and depression can each cause a great deal of suffering, but new research indicates the combination of the two may be linked to something else entirely—a smaller brain.
11 hours ago | 4 / 5 (2) | 0 |
In a series of lab experiments designed to unravel the workings of a key enzyme widely considered a possible trigger of rheumatoid arthritis, researchers at Johns Hopkins have found that in the most severe ...
13 hours ago | 5 / 5 (1) | 0 |