The TACL-4 is a reliable and valid measure of a child’s receptive spoken vocabulary, grammar, and syntax.
Features and benefits
- Measures children’s ability to understand three language forms: Vocabulary, Grammatical Morphemes, and Elaborated Phrases and Sentences.
- Age range was extended upward to include ages 10 years, 0 months through 12 years, 11 months.
- Age-related entry points, basals, and ceilings ensure that testing time is kept to a minimum and children are tested only on items that are optimal for their ability level. Floor and ceiling effects are minimal in the subtests and nonexistent in the composite, the Receptive Language Index.
- Each item on the test was reevaluated using both conventional item analyses to choose “good” items and new differential analyses to find and eliminate potentially biased items.
- Each item is composed of a word or sentence and a corresponding picture plate that has three full-color drawings. One of the three pictures for each item illustrates the meaning of the word, morpheme, or syntactic structure being tested. The other two pictures illustrate either two semantic or grammatical contrasts to the stimulus, or one contrast and one decoy. The examiner reads the stimulus aloud, and the examinee is directed to point to the picture that he or she believes best represents the meaning of the word, phrase, or sentence spoken by the examiner. No oral response is required.
- Test items are ordered according to difficulty within each of the three subtests. Entry points and basal and ceiling rules for scoring are provided for each subtest.
- The Examiner’s Manual includes a comprehensive discussion of the test’s theoretical and research-based foundation, item development, standardization, administration and scoring procedures, and guidelines for using and interpreting the test’s results.
- All-new normative data were collected in 2012 and 2013. Norms are based on a nationally representative sample of 1,142 children in the United States. Percentile ranks, standard scores, and age equivalents are provided.
- To demonstrate that the fourth edition is both reliable and valid, more studies with larger samples were conducted.
- TACL-4 alpha coefficients range from .94 to .96 for the subtests; the Receptive Language Index alpha is .97. Average correlations with popular criterion measures of receptive language ability range from .67 to .71. Studies of diagnostic accuracy as it relates to sensitivity (median = .77), specificity (median = .84), classification accuracy (median = .80), and receiver operating characteristic/area under the curve (median = .88) are reported.
- Reliability and validity studies were conducted with individuals with normal language abilities and individuals who had been diagnosed with learning disabilities, ADHD, deafness/hard of hearing, articulation disorder, language impairment, autism spectrum disorder, and intellectual disorder as well as those who had been identified as gifted and talented.