Area of Inquiry #1: Assessment & Measurement

1. Enhancing capacity of assessment tools: defining relevant outcomes, developing & validating measures

  • Defining relevant outcomes for young DLLs, their families, & the practitioners who serve them:
    • across children’s developmental domains such as: social & emotional, language & literacy, cognition, physical health, mathematics & science, approaches to learning, progress toward English language acquisition
    • among families, especially as related to their children’s development & learning
    • for practitioners (e.g., fluency in second languages) that are related to promoting young DLLs’ developmental & learning outcomes
    • to identify unique characteristics & needs of DLL children & families that may moderate these outcomes
  • Engaging in measurement validation & development, with the goal of ensuring culturally & linguistically sound measures including:
    • defining guidelines for constructing appropriate measures of DLLs' development
    • identifying promising measures and/or critically reviewing existing measures used to assess DLLs development, the quality of their learning environments & interactions, & their families’ needs
    • validating and/or developing measurement tools for assessing:
      • developmental & learning outcomes
      • quality of practices in early care & education settings (including environmental features & teacher behaviors) that promote development & learning
      • families’ beliefs & practices related to young DLLs’ development & learning

2. Promoting culturally & linguistically sound administration methods in research with DLLs & their families

  • Identifying the appropriateness of instruments used with DLLs, including:
    • tools for assessing DLLs’ outcomes & growth across developmental domains, & progress toward English acquisition
    • measures of quality of early care & education practices that support development & learning
    • measures of families’ characteristics & experiences related to the development of young DLLs
    • norms of DLL infants, toddlers, and preschool‐aged children across developmental domains
    • research needed to fill gaps in knowledge regarding measurement tools (in the above areas) & the developmental norms of young DLLs
  • Defining appropriate administration processes for use with DLLs, including:
    • standards for measurement for instructional, research, & evaluation purposes
    • systems & procedures for assessing DLL children (i.e., language(s) of assessment; interpreter & assessor characteristics)
    • processes for analyzing & interpreting assessments of developmental progress of DLLs from monolingual or multiple language households