Quality of language intervention provided to primary-grade students with language impairment.J Commun Disord. 2014 May-Jun; 49:13-24.JC
This study had two aims: (a) to describe the quality of language intervention provided by school-based speech-language pathologists (SLPs) to children with language impairment in the primary grades with respect to the quality of emotional support, instructional support, and proactive management during SLP-child interactions, and (b) to determine if key characteristics of the SLPs are predictors of variance in intervention quality. Participants were 174 children nested within 40 SLPs' caseloads from various districts in two Midwestern states involved in a larger study of speech-language therapy practices in the public schools. A total of 208 videotaped language intervention sessions were coded for emotional support, instructional support, and proactive management using the Classroom Assessment Scoring System (CLASS; Pianta, La Paro, & Hamre, 2008). The quality of language intervention varied widely and was generally mid-range to high with respect to emotional support and proactive management, and low to mid-range in terms of instructional support. The quality of interactions varied and a large percentage of the observed variance in quality was attributed to SLPs. Time pressure was a strong predictor of the quality of emotional support, instructional support, and proactive management, and job satisfaction was a significant predictor of instructional support and proactive management. This descriptive information about school-based language intervention highlights the impact of the individual SLP in terms of the quality of the interactions taking place and the potential need to ease job pressures and promote job satisfaction.
Readers will be able to: (1) identify and define three aspects of SLP-child interaction quality during intervention as framed in this study using the CLASS observation tool (Pianta, La Paro, et al., 2008); (2) discuss the relevance of those three aspects of quality to children with LI; and (3) identify SLP-level factors that significantly predict SLP-student interaction quality during intervention for children with LI.