Expressive Language Test-2 (2nd Edition)

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Test Purpose
The ELT 2 measures language expression and flexibility.  This assessment is unique in that the language skills tested are those commonly identified by researchers, teachers, and clinicians as most predictive of classroom learning difficulty.


Test Description
The ELT 2 is comprised of five subtests with tasks that require students to process and organize language, retrieve what they hear, and use the expressive skills needed for success in the classroom.  The test is sensitive to typical variations in expressive language development which means you'll identify those children with true expressive language disorders and have less chance of over-identification.

The sequencing tasks included are a fundamental skill of narrative ability.  The inability to sequence and express a narrative is an important predictor of academic success.

The Metalinguistic tasks of Defining and Generating Examples are included in order to tap a student's awareness of and ability to express the meanings of words and to use those words in context.  Students with expressive language disorders may not have the vocabulary or know how to exactly zero in on the set of features that belong to a word in order to do well on these tasks.

Grammar and Syntax are areas that consistently define children with expressive language disorders.  Deficits in these areas affect a student's ability to communicate meaningfully.

Defining Categories measures a student's ability to give verbal definitions and is well-recognized as a strong correlate of children's academic success and literacy attainment (Chall, 1987; Johnson & Anglin, 1995).



  • Subtest A: Sequencing
    Sequencing skills are tested in three ways.  The student describes a sequence of events or answers sequence questions about a picture in the first task.  Next the student is asked to tell about an event without using pictures.  The last task asks the student to sequence a set of pictures and tell a story about them.
  • Subtest B: Metalinguistics—Defining and Subtest C: Metalinguistics—Generating Examples
    These subtests are presented together.  The student defines a concept and then gives an example of it.
  • Subtest D: Grammar and Syntax
    These skills are measured in two ways.  The student is asked to repair grammar and syntax at the sentence level and then, is asked to put words in the correct order to make a comprehensible sentence.
  • Subtest E: Defining Categories
    The student is asked to define or describe a category when presented with a category name.

Examiner Qualifications
The test should be administered only by a trained professional familiar with language disorders (e.g., speech-language pathologist, psychologist).


Test Procedures

  • Begin with Subtest A, Item 1 and administer all items in each subtest.  Use the Stimuli Book to administer Subtests A and D.  Use the Picture Sequence Cards in the final section of Subtest A.
  • There are no basals or ceilings.

Testing Time

  • 35 minutes

Scoring Responses/Types of Scores
A score of 1 or 0 is assigned to each response, based on relevancy and quality.  Scoring Standards in the Examiner's Manual provide specific scoring guidelines for each test item.

  • Raw Scores are converted to:
    • Age Equivalents
    • Percentile Ranks
    • Standard Scores

Discussion of Performance
The Discussion of Performance section found in the Examiner's Manual was developed to guide the examiner to make appropriate and educationally-relevant recommendations for remediation based on a clear understanding of each subtest.  It includes:

  • Helpful suggestions using testing data to make sound treatment decisions
  • Skills students need to be successful on each subtest are delineated and applied to classroom performance
  • General remediation strategies you can incorporate immediately into your therapy program or ask teachers and parents to do
  • Error patterns and their implications on classroom behaviors

Standardization and Statistics
The ELT 2 standardization study was conducted from August through November, 2009.  The study included over 1,400+ subjects representing the latest National Census for race, gender, age, and educational placement.  In addition, 307 subjects with language disorders were included in validity studies.

  • Reliability—established by the use of test-retest and internal consistency methods for all the subtests and the total test at all age levels.  Reliability coefficients and SEMs for the total test were .91 and 3.09.  Total test item homogeneity is .92. Reliability tests include: SEM, Inter-Rater Reliability, Test-Retest, and Item Homogeneity (KR20)
  • Validity—established by the use of content and contrasted group validity for each subtest and the total test at all age levels.  Results revealed that the subtests and skills selected were those reflective of expressive language skills.  The test differentiates subjects with language disorders from subjects developing language normally.
    • Of the 72 median biserial correlations, all but one was significant at the .01 level.  Subtest Intercorrelations and correlations between subtests and total test ranged from .68 to .91.  Validity tests include: Contrast Groups (t-values), Point Biserial Correlations, Subtest Intercorrelations, and Correlations between Subtests and Total Test.
  • Race Group Difference Analysis—conducted at the item and subtest levels.  Tests included Analysis of Variance F-tests, z-tests and Chi Square.  Race was not found to be a strong factor at the item level.
  • Race/Socioeconomic Group Difference Analyses—conducted at the subtest level.  Tests included the Analysis of Variance F-tests, z-tests, and Chi Square which indicated that these demographics were not strong factors.


Copyright © 2010

Test Set includes: examiner's manual, stimuli book, 16 picture sequence cards, 20 test forms
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