Evaluating Psychometric Properties of an Existing Functional Communication Assessment for Deaf Individuals

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University of Alabama Libraries

There are a lack of psychometrically sound and non-invasive assessments to determine individuals’ strongest communication modality that researchers and practitioners can utilize within the deaf population. Researchers continue to have problems investigating effective communication modality for individuals with hearing loss to establish baselines for language usages. A communication assessment may provide better understanding of a deaf individual’s best receptive and expressive language skills. The purpose of the study is to create psychometric properties of one communication assessment designed by the Alabama Department of Mental Health. Williams and Crump (2019) designed the Communication Skills Assessment (CSA) to measure functional communication of deaf individuals in order to develop effective communication strategies during real time settings. The CSA is included in routine mental health screenings across the states of Alabama and South Carolina to develop effective communication access within mental health care because treatment is language-based. Rasch analysis was used to evaluate the psychometric properties for six out of eight domains in the CSA. A further analysis of etiology was conducted to measure the potential impact of expressive and receptive skills. Results suggested etiology difference was detected in certain communication skill level which may offer insight for potential complications that prevent efficacy in receptive or expressive communication. Suggestions are also provided for additional research to fill in the gaps with communication assessment for deaf individuals.

Electronic Thesis or Dissertation
Assessment, Communication, Deaf, Skills