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Developing a language screening test for Arabic-speaking children

Article type: Published article


This report gives an account of general and specific issues associated with developing an Arabic-language screening test for children aged between 3 and 12 years. Challenges, dilemmas and stages in the developmental process are discussed. The development of the Arabic Language Screening Test: Preschool and School Age illustrates the process. Issues and stages included: (1) arriving at a consensus about scope and purpose; (2) conceptualizing tasks and items; (3) specifying item content and structure; (4) field-testing the screening tool in a circumscribed environment; (5) developing a robust scoring and interpretation system for determining Pass or Fail, and (6) establishing the degree of accuracy in differentiating children with and without language disorders. The product is a screening test of verbal and related nonverbal abilities with parallel components for children of preschool (3-5 years) and elementary school age (6-12 years). Normative data were collected for 750 Arabic-speaking children in Jordan and Palestine, distributed fairly equally between the ages of 3 and 12 years. Normative means increased with age and standard deviations decreased. Interscorer agreement (99%), internal consistency (Cronbach alpha = 0.98) and diagnostic sensitivity (over 90% accuracy) were high. Constraints and limitations in the development of the test are described and discussed from both objective and personal perspectives

Full citation

Wiig, E. H. and Y. El-Halees (2000). "Developing a language screening test for Arabic-speaking children." Folia Phoniatrica et Logopaedica 52(6): 260-274.


Methods Condition Gender Age Country Setting Sample size
healthy Both 3 - 12 Jordan
Education Institute 750

Number of items

Not available


Measure require training

Required time

6-30 min

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Articles last updated: December 2020