Speech Therapy Assessments
 

Speech Therapy Assessments

What can I expect from an assessment?
How long does an assessment take?
Will I get a report?
How often do children need to be assessed?
   
 
What can I expect from an assessment?
The Initial Assessment includes
  • Detailed discussion with a parent/guardian about the child’s areas of delay /difficulty, the parent’s concerns and any medical and early development history that may be relevant to speech and language issues. For example, questions are asked about a child’s history of infections, including glue ear and ear infections as this can affect a child’s hearing and consequently speech and language development
  • Observation of your child at play (if appropriate)
  • Informal or formal assessment of a child’s speech and language skills. Formal assessments are published assessments that are often standardised so a child’s extent of delay or difficulty can be quantified as well as qualified
  • Feedback given to the parent/guardian on any findings, and preliminary recommendations
  • Opportunity for questions to be raised
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My child often doesn’t seem to follow what I’m saying or asking him to do. How do I know if he has a problem with his understanding?
If a child doesn’t seem to follow what you say or ask him to do, it could be due to a difficulty with:
  • Hearing
  • Understanding, or
  • Attention

The only way to know which difficulty, or combination of difficulties, a child may have is to:

  • Investigate if the child has any hearing difficulties, or has a history of ear infections or glue ear. Glue ear can affect the way a child hears speech sounds – some say it can be like listening to someone talking under water. As many as 25% of children can experience some element of hearing loss at some stage due to glue ear or ear infections
  • Assess a child’s understanding of language to see if it is at a level expected for their age
  • Assess a child’s level of attention and listening. This is done by observation whilst the child is playing and/or during the assessment of understanding of language
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How long does an assessment take?
The Initial Assessment usually takes 1 ½ hours. However, if the assessment needs are complex, an assessment may take one ore more sessions to complete. The complexity of assessment depends on the type and severity of the child’s speech and language delay/difficulties.
   
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Will I get a report?
A Summary Report will be written and given to parents/guardians following the completion of the assessment process. The Report will give details of the child’s speech and language strengths and difficulties.

A more comprehensive Report can also be provided, which gives more detail about the findings, and includes advice, management strategies for both school and home, and recommendations for treatment.

   
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How often do children need to be assessed?
A child’s speech and language skills are regularly reviewed informally during the therapy process. As a child’s skills change and develop, additional testing may be required.

A comprehensive re-assessment of a child’s speech and language skills is not usually conducted within a 6 month period. This is partly as published standardised tests cannot be re-administered in under a 6 month period.

   
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