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A little help please? (SALT assessment scores)

(5 Posts)
KeepOnKeepingOn1 Thu 04-Oct-12 12:43:50

I was hoping that someone might be able to suggest what these might mean - not in terms of difficulties but whether they are similar to those received for DC suspected or diagnosed with an ASD. DS(2) is 6 and has just started year 2. He has been seen by NHS SALT for 3 years and is on Action+. He has a referral to OT (sensory issues + handwriting difficulties) and to Comm Paed both from GP and from SALT - ?ASD.


Concepts and Following Directions 75th percentile
Understanding Spoken Paragraphs 91st percentile


Sentence comprehension 25th percentile
Inferential comprehension 37th percentile
Naming (vocabulary) 84th percentile
Syntactic formulation (grammar) 50th percentile
Semantic decisions 99th percentile
Overall score 77th percentile

DS(1) has a highly complex disorder of which ASD is just a part and so I can't use his scores as comparison - eg DS(2) also has APD and so in the CELF subtest he is on the 1st rather than 91st percentile.


BelleJolie Thu 04-Oct-12 21:25:00

Hi, I don't have DC with an ASD diagnosis so can't compare that, but as a SALT, I can say his scores are great from a purely 'technical' point of view.

His 'inferential comprehension' score is a little lower than the others (although 'sentence comprehension' was also lower than the others...which is interesting as 'concepts and directions' is usually a 'harder' subtest as it is heavily reliant on auditory memory...he must have a good auditory memory!) so this suggests inferential comprehension may be a relative weakness (although still within normal limits). Inferential comprehension requires the child to read between the lines and understand information which isn't explicit said. Children with ASD tend to find this difficult.

Whilst his 'technical' language scores are all good, it would be important to look more qualitatively at how he uses the great language skills he has in social contexts, as well as his general social skills and non-verbal communication. This information tends to be gathered through observation and discussion with those who know the child well and the tests that you have had done won't 'pick' this up (although his social skills in the testing situation and interaction with the SLT would have been noted...and also anecdotally, some children with pragmatic language difficulties can sometimes give 'unusual' responses to some testing items).

It is possible for a child to generally do really well on assessments such as these but still have significant difficulties with social skills. This type of profile is typical in those who have a diagnosis of Aspergers or high-functioning autism.

I'm not sure if this is of any help but hope it answers your question...

KeepOnKeepingOn1 Fri 05-Oct-12 07:52:00

Thank you very much. smile The assessment was conducted due to concerns of teaching staff (avoiding eye contact, fidgeting, difficult to get and maintain attention, does not always respond to name, unaware of speaking when teachers are speaking, and especially not following instructions etc).

The assessments were carried out 6 months ago but I have only just received the report - emailed direct from the S&L teacher. The trouble is that school staff have decided that the assessments should be interpreted as 'all is well' and so now staff seem to believe that his difficulties are the result of a physcial hearing difficulty. His last hearing test was normal but is to be repeated.

BelleJolie Fri 05-Oct-12 09:29:14

It won't hurt having his hearing tested again (as hearing can fluctuate in some children) but in the likely event this comes back clear, school staff need to be aware that sensory issues and social communication needs can potentially account for the concerns they have observed, and the tests that were done don't assess these areas directly.

Does he have a diagnosis yet or is he being investigated? Sorry, I wasn't sure from your OP. Has anyone assessed his social communication skills yet?

KeepOnKeepingOn1 Fri 05-Oct-12 10:03:08

DS(2) is still being investigated at present. I have never followed the 'official' route before but only have experience of gathering evidence independently as the school never requested assessment of DS(1). Who would assess his social communication skills? Are there specific tests that could be carried out? The specialist S&L teacher wants to come back to do further assessments and it would help to know what she might do. Does this come via the school or should I be taking it up with the comm paed?

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