Use of the Differential Ability Scales (DAS) Special Nonverbal Composite among Young Children with Linguistic Differences Academic Article uri icon


  • The Differential Ability Scales (DAS) was administered to young children (ages 3 to 6) to determine the appropriateness of the instrument with children with linguistic differences. Specifically, the Special Nonverbal Composite (SNC) of the DAS was investigated for children with linguistic differences and children who speak English as their first language. The ability of the SNC to differentiate children with linguistic differences as opposed to more global developmental delays was also of interest. The children who participated in the study were grouped as: (a) no identified concern, English as primary language (control); (b) identified as having Specific Language Impairment (SLI); (c) identified as Deaf/Hearing Impaired (Deaf/HI); (d) identified as Developmentally Delayed (DD); or (e) no identified developmental concern, English as a Second Language/Limited English Proficiency (ESL/LEP). Children in the SLI, Deaf/HI, and DD groups had been identified previously by their school district, local Speech and Hearing Clinic, or other agency. Children in the ESL/LEP group were from a variety of cultural backgrounds and spoke minimal English. Results indicate that SNC scores obtained for children in the ESL/LEP group were comparable to those obtained by the control group. Children in the SLI and Deaf/HI groups obtained scores lower than those of the control and ESL/LEP groups; however, their scores were significantly higher than those obtained by the children in the DD group. Implications for the use of the SNC in the assessment of young children with linguistic differences are discussed.

published proceedings

  • Journal of Psychoeducational Assessment

author list (cited authors)

  • Riccio, C. A., Ross, C. M., Boan, C. H., Jemison, S., & Houston, F.

citation count

  • 10

complete list of authors

  • Riccio, Cynthia A||Ross, Carl M||Boan, Candace H||Jemison, Sandra||Houston, Felicia

publication date

  • September 1997