Developmental Sentence Scoring: A Clinical Procedure for Estimating Syntactic Development in Children’s Spontaneous Speech Developmental Sentence Scoring (DSS) is a clinical procedure for estimating the status and progress of children enrolled for language training in a clinic. It is based upon a developmental scale of syntax acquisition. By analyzing a child’s spontaneous, tape-recorded speech sample, a clinician can estimate to what extent the child ... Articles
Articles  |   August 01, 1971
Developmental Sentence Scoring: A Clinical Procedure for Estimating Syntactic Development in Children’s Spontaneous Speech
 
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Articles   |   August 01, 1971
Developmental Sentence Scoring: A Clinical Procedure for Estimating Syntactic Development in Children’s Spontaneous Speech
Journal of Speech and Hearing Disorders, August 1971, Vol. 36, 315-340. doi:10.1044/jshd.3603.315
 
Journal of Speech and Hearing Disorders, August 1971, Vol. 36, 315-340. doi:10.1044/jshd.3603.315

Developmental Sentence Scoring (DSS) is a clinical procedure for estimating the status and progress of children enrolled for language training in a clinic. It is based upon a developmental scale of syntax acquisition. By analyzing a child’s spontaneous, tape-recorded speech sample, a clinician can estimate to what extent the child has generalized the grammatical rules sufficiently to use them in verbal performance. With such a guide the clinician can plan lessons which present these structures in a presumably developmental sequence, thereby introducing grammatical complexity in systematically graded steps. The DSS procedure gives weighted scores to a developmental order of pronouns, verbs, negatives, conjunctions, yes-no questions, and wh-questions. The mean score per sentence estimates the child’s ability to formulate sentences with a high grammatical “load.” The DSS procedure was carried out on 80 boys and 80 girls, ages 3 years, 0 months, to 6 years, 11 months, equally distributed within six-month age groups, all coming from middle-income, standard dialect homes, and all scoring between 85 and 115 on the Peabody Picture Vocabulary Test. Percentiles of DSS scores for these 160 normal children provide guidelines for estimating the status and rate of progress of children treated in a clinic.

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