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Ages: 6-0 through 12-11
Testing Time: 35 minutes
The TOPS-3E: NU assesses a school-age child’s ability to integrate semantic and linguistic knowledge with reasoning ability by way of picture stimuli and verbal responses.
The TOPS-3E: NU focuses on students’ linguistic ability to think and reason. Language competence is the verbal indicator of how a student’s language skills affect his ability to think, reason, problem solve, infer, classify, associate, predict, determine causes, sequence, and understand directions. The test focuses on a broad range of language-based thinking skills, including clarifying, analyzing, generating solutions, evaluating, and showing affective thinking.
While other tests may asses students’ thinking skills by tapping mathematical, spatial, or nonverbal potential, the TOPS-3E: NU measures discreet skills that form the foundation of language-based thinking, reasoning, and problem-solving ability.
Although the skills tested on the TOPS-3E: NU are necessary for developing social competence, it is not primarily a test of pragmatic or social language skills. Rather, it should be part of a battery of tests and observations used to assess pragmatic competence.
Description of the Test
The TOPS-3E: NU has three components: an Examiner’s Manual, Examiner Record Booklets, and a Picture Book. The Examiner’s Manual includes a comprehensive discussion of the test’s theoretical and research-based foundation, item development, standardization, administration and scoring procedures, norm tables, and guidelines for using and interpreting the test’s results. The Examiner Record Booklet provides space to record responses and transform the raw score to an age equivalent, percentile rank, and the Problem Solving Index. The test kit also includes a Picture Book, which includes the picture stimuli for the test items.
Reliability and validity studies were conducted with individuals who have typical language ability and individuals who had been previously diagnosed with a language impairment or received other special education services. The average coefficient alpha is .82 for the Problem Solving Index. Studies were conducted to examine the ability of the test to differentiate students who receive special education services or have language impairments from those who do not. The results demonstrate that a Problem Solving Index cutoff score of 90 resulted in a sensitivity of .75, a specificity of .85, and a ROC/AUC of .74 for differentiating students who receive special education services; and a cutoff score of 92 resulted in a sensitivity of .69, a specificity of .89, and a ROC/AUC of .73 for differentiating students who have a language impairment. Validity of the test composites was demonstrated by correlations to the Universal Nonverbal Intelligence Test–Group Abilities Test (UNIT-GAT; Bracken & McCallum, in development). The coefficient for the Analogic Reasoning subtest was .73, and the coefficient for the Quantitative subtest was .89, both very large.
COMPLETE TEST INCLUDES: Examiner’s Manual, Picture Book, Picture Sequence Cards, and 25 Examiner Record Booklets, all in a sturdy storage box (©2018).