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Arizona Early Intervention Program -Assessment Part I-

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Presentation on theme: "Arizona Early Intervention Program -Assessment Part I-"— Presentation transcript:

1 Arizona Early Intervention Program -Assessment Part I-

2 Authors With contributions from Naomi Younggren, Department of Defense/Army Early Intervention; Debbie Cate, NECTAC; Megan Vinh, WRRC; Joicey Hurth, NECTAC/NERRC; Christina Kasprzak, NECTAC/ECO; and Grace Kelley, SERRC 2 Anne Lucas NECTAC / WRRC Kathi Gillaspy NECTAC / ECO Mary Peters NECTAC

3 Learning Objective Understand how to: Gather information about the child’s functioning Differentiate conventional vs. functional assessment Partner with families 3 Meaningful IFSP Outcomes 3 Global Child Outcomes Functional Assessment

4 FUNCTIONAL ASSESSMENT Adapted from: Younggren, N. (May, 2011). Quality Practices in Early Intervention and Preschool Programs – Authentic Assessment. Power Point presentation presented at the Pacific TA Meeting, Honolulu, HI. What is Functional Assessment? Why is Functional Assessment Foundational? Who does Functional Assessment? Where is Functional Assessment done? How is Functional Assessment done?

5 What is Functional Assessment? Assessment of the young child’s skills in the real life contexts of family, culture and community rather than discrete isolated tasks irrelevant to daily life 5 “the science of the strange behavior of children, with strange adults, in strange settings for the briefest possible period of time.” Bronfenbrenner, U. (1979). The Ecology of Human Development: Experiments by Nature and Design. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.

6 Functional Assessment is… Contextually relevant information about the child’s strengths and needs Individually focused Culturally sensitive Functional Assessment is not… Domain based and discipline specific Deficit driven Intimidating 6 Bagnato, S.J., Neisworth, J.T., & Pretti-Frontczak, K. Linking Authentic Assessment and Early Childhood Intervention -Best Measures for Best Practices, Second Edition. Brookes Publishing, Baltimore, MD. 2010.

7 Functional Assessment Our Focus Shifts FromTo Knows how to make eye contact, smile, and give a hug Initiates affection toward caregivers and respond to others’ affection Knows how to imitate a gesture when prompted by others Watches what a peer says or does and incorporate it into his/her own play Uses finger in pointing motion Points to indicate needs or wants Shows a skill in a specific situation Uses a skill in actions across settings and situations to accomplish something meaningful to the child 7

8 Functional Assessment is Authentic The more realistic or natural the task, – the more motivated the child – the more applicable it is to everyday events and situations Authentic tasks and circumstances reinforce – competency-based approach to the education of young children – assessment of all disciplines across complex skills and processes – generalization of learning across settings Authentic tasks require the assessor to make no inferences about a child's capabilities, because the behaviors sampled are directly observable 8 Delaney, E. (1999). Curriculum and Intervention Strategies [Presentation]. Presented at SPED 508. Retrieved from

9 Conventional Assessment Usefulness of Conventional Assessment: To distinguish typical from atypical performance To provide one more source of information 9 “Everything that can be measured counts, but not everything that counts can be measured.”

10 Why is Functional Fundamental? Yields a real picture of the child Guides identification of functional individualized outcomes 10

11 Who performs Functional Assessment? Families and familiar, knowledgeable caregivers in the child’s life Providers Teachers Others, less familiar, can also contribute 11

12 When is Functional Assessment performed? Over time: “One-time observations even in the natural context, are insufficient and often misleading.” 12 Bagnato, S.J., Neisworth, J.T., & Pretti-Frontczak, K. Linking Authentic Assessment and Early Childhood Intervention -Best Measures for Best Practices, Second Edition. Brookes Publishing, Baltimore, MD. 2010.

13 How is Functional Assessment performed? Knowing the purpose for the assessment is important Observation is essential: –Keep a focus on being objective vs. subjective Record keeping is key: –Qualitative –Quantitative Hearing from others who know the child is critical – involve families! 13

14 Involving Families Listen to the family story Observe and ask about the child’s day-to-day routines and activities related to -engagement -independence -social relationships Ask parents to show or describe Observe how the parent engages the child Observe the child in play scenarios 14

15 How: Gathering Relevant Information… 15 Routines/Activities not going well HinderingFactors Improve Routine Improve Routine Promote Promote Social Relations Social Relations Engagement Engagement Independence Independence Campbell, P. [n.d.] Intervention Decision-Making Chart. Thomas Jefferson University. Retrieved September 2012 from Helping Factors Employ Strategies Identify Learning Opportunities Improve Functional Abilities Improve Functional Abilities Social Relations Social Relations Engagement Engagement Independence Independence Enhance Learning Opportunities Employ Strategies Routines/Activities going well

16 Questions Related to Everyday Activities and Routines How is bath time going for you? How is it going for your child? How’s it going for other caregivers? Who is involved in bath time? What does your child’s participation in bath time look like? What does your participation look like? What is happening when your child’s engagement is most positive? What is happening when your child’s engagement is most difficult? What would bath time look like if it were going well? 16

17 Questions Related to Priorities, Resources and Concerns It is important to guide the conversation to what is relevant to both the child and family, modifying the words you use to match their situation and probe for further information. You mentioned concerns regarding... Can you tell me a little bit more about that? Are there any other programs your family is involved in? How would you like other family members/caregivers to be involved in Early Intervention? How would you like your physician to be involved? 17

18 Where is Functional Assessment performed? Only in the children’s natural everyday settings, activities, and routines 18

19 Thank You! Questions? Submit to For more information: 19 This product was adapted from work developed by staff from NECTAC, WRRC and ECO in response to the need expressed from state and local providers to have specific information and resources about developing IFSP outcomes. The full training package, including a full reference list, is freely available online:

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