A Speech-Language Pathologist will complete the assessments.


They will complete the six components of an assessment listed above over the course of a session or two and score and synthesize them and send you a report and talk through next steps with you and your child.


A pediatrician or school team referral is often needed to get an evaluation and assessment completed depending on the severity of your child’s speech sound deficits.


The school, a university clinic, or a private clinic will have all the professionals and materials needed to complete and speech sound assessment and evaluation.


An assessment will give a complete picture of where a child’s speech sound profile is in relation to typical peers. It will highlight issues or areas where they are atypical and often provides a framework for next steps and what any intervention should target.


The assessments given will get a complete picture of your child’s functioning in the area of speech sound and if intervention is warranted. Without assessment we would just be relying on judgement calls to decide who has a speech sound disorder and who doesn’t. We could miss some and we could over-identify. With an assessment profile we give the children, the family, and the professionals the time and in-depth analysis needed for assess and diagnose speech sound disorders.


Any good speech sound assessment will have 6 major parts:


Case History

What’s the child’s story? What are the relevant health, hearing, developmental milestones? What are the presenting issues? This background information is typically provided to the SLP in an interview with the parents or guardians.

Connected Speech Sample

An SLP plays or chats with your child and analyzes the words they use, their grammar, and the length of their average speaking instance. The speech sample should be at least 100 words said in a conversation. You'll want to get the child talking about something he/she is really interested in so they will say longer clusters of words. 


Standardized Assessments

These fancy tests often require kids to repeat words and identify pictures. The children are are graded and their score is compared to typical peers of the same age (norms). These assessments are used to obtain age and grade-level equivalencies for you to see where you child falls. We've put together a list of some of the standardized assessments commonly used for children with speech sound disorders.


Oral Mechanism Exam

An SLP will look at their facial structures and make sure there aren’t any outliers in how they are built that could impact their speech!


Criterion-based Assessments

These are great for comparing a child’s work to their work in the past. Criterion-based are assessments show a child’s progress from where they were, where they are currently, and where they can go!


Intelligibility Score

A way for an SLP to gauge the ability for familiar and unfamiliar people to understand what your child is saying with and without context. Your SLP will calculate this by using a percentage of consonants correct (PCC) or percentage of vowels correct (PVC) formula. To determine the PCC, calculate the total number of consonants and the total number of correct consonants. Then divide the number of correct consonants by the total number of consonants. Multiply the answer by 100 to determine the PCC. Do the same thing for the PVC. 



Once the assessment is complete, the SLP begins to think about the treatment