Assessing Intentional Communication in Typically Developing Infants Using the Communication Complexity Scale
Christensen, Katie Anne
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The Communication Complexity Scale (CCS; Brady, Fleming, Thiemann-Borque, Olswang, Dowden, Saunders, & Marquis, 2012) is a criterion-referenced assessment of early, primarily pre-linguistic, communication signals. It produces an expressive communication summary score, based on the most sophisticated communication behaviors demonstrated by an individual. According to the authors, this score identifies whether an individual is communicating at the preintentional or intentional level. To date, the CCS has been used to document the communication level of individuals with severe impairments at a variety of ages. However it has not yet been used to document communication levels in typically developing children, an important step in establishing construct validity for the tool. This research project examined whether the CCS is sensitive to the transition from preintentional to intentional communication in typically developing infants seen at 7 months and again at 11 months of age. According to the current literature, the transition can be expected to occur sometime between these ages. The CCS was used to assess a convenience sample of infants at 7 and 11 months of age. A Wilcoxon signed-rank test revealed non-significant differences between the 7- and 11- month groups. This study did not demonstrate construct validity for the CCS.
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