Psychology 638 / Special Education 638

Early Childhood Assessment and Intervention

1. Catalog Entry

Early Childhood Assessment and Intervention

Credit hours (3)
Prerequisite: PSYC 631 (for psychology majors) or permission of instructor
Cross listed: EDUC 638

This course will teach selection, administration and interpretation of formal and informal assessment techniques for young children with disabling and at-risk conditions and their families. Within a developmental-ecological context the course will teach assessment strategies and link assessment results with effective intervention strategies.

2. Detailed Description of Course

Designed to provide knowledge and experience in assessing children birth to 5 years of age in the areas of cognition, social-emotional, communication, motor, and adaptive development. Different formal and informal methods will be presented, as well as methods for collaborating with families and other professionals.
    1) Current Issues in the Assessment of Young Children
        a. Basic assessment terminology
        b. Legal provisions and ethical principles regarding assessment
        c. Screening, pre-referral, referral, and classification procedures
        d. Family-centered services
        e. Impact of culture upon child development and parenting
        f. Working within the context of a multidisciplinary team of professionals
    2) Impact of medical disorders and illnesses development in young children
        a. Disabling and at-risk medical conditions that impact development
        b. Impact of child disability and illness upon families
    3) Development of assessment skills
        a. Challenges in assessing young children
        b. Use and limitations of assessment instruments
        c. Screening measures and determination of at-risk status
        d. Norm-referenced and criterion-referenced assessment
        e. Play-based assessment
        f. Assessment of child’s environment and impact on development
        g. Assessment of family resources, priorities and concerns
        h. Assessment of cognitive, perceptual, motor, language, social, emotional, adaptive, and
            pre-academic functioning
    4) Linking Assessment Results and Intervention
        a. Interpreting assessment results and decision-making
        b. National, state or provincial, and local accommodations and modifications for young children
            with disabilities
        c. Evaluating and selecting intervention strategies
        d. Monitoring children’s progress

3. Detailed Description of Conduct of Course

Instructional strategies will include student presentations, demonstrations, case studies, use of audio-visual materials, guest speakers, and lecture.

4. Goals and Objectives of the Course

Goals, objectives, and assignments in the class address Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP) Standard 1: Content and Pedagogical Knowledge: 1.1 and 1.3.  

Objectives below also include the following standards:          

Council for Exceptional Children (CEC/DEC) Initial Preparation Standards:
    1) Standard #1: Learner Development and Individual Learning Differences (ISCI/ECSE 1);
    2) Standard #2: Learning Environments (ISCI/ECSE 2);
    3) Standard #3: Curricular Content Knowledge (ISCI/ECSE 3);
    4) Standard #4: Assessment (ISCI/ECSE 4);
    5) Standard #5: Instructional Planning and Strategies (ISCI/ECSE 5);
    6) Standard #6: Professional Learning and Ethical Practice (ISCI/ECSE 6);
    7) Standard #7: Collaboration (ISCI/ECSE 7)

Virginia Department of Education (VDOE) Licensure standards    
    1) Special Education: Early Childhood (birth through age 5)
        a. Competency 3: Assessment

National Association of School Psychologists
    1) Standard 2.1: Data-Based Decision-Making and Accountability
    2) Standard 2.2: Consultation and Collaboration
    3) Standard 2.3: Effective Instruction and Development of Cognitive Academic Skills
    4) Standard 2.4: Socialization and Development of Life Skills
    5) Standard 2.5: Student Diversity in Development and Learning
    6) Standard 2.6: School and Systems Organization, Policy Development and Climate
    7) Standard 2.7: Prevention, Crisis Intervention, and Mental Health
    8) Standard 2.8: Home/School/ Community Collaboration
    9) Standard 2.9: Research and Program Evaluation
    10) Standard 2.10: School Psychology Practice and Development
    11) Standard 2.11: Information Technology

Upon successful completion of PSYC 602, students will:
(Italics codes: CEC/EC = Council for Exceptional Children/Early Childhood; VDOE SE-ECSE = Virginia Department of Education ECSE competencies; VDOE Pro = Virginia Department of Education Professional Studies competencies)

    1) Demonstrate understanding of basic assessment terminology. (CEC/EC ISCI 4 K1; VDOE SE-
        ECSE 3)
    2) Demonstrate knowledge of legal provisions and ethical principles regarding assessment.
        (CEC/EC ISCI 4 K2; VDOE SE-ECSE 3)
    3) Demonstrate knowledge of screening, pre-referral, referral, and classification procedures.
        (CEC/EC ISCI 4 K3; VDOE SE-ECSE 3)
    4) Demonstrate understanding and application of family-centered services, recognizing the
        impact of culture upon child development and parenting. (CEC/EC ISCI 4 K4; ECSE 4 S2)
    5) Participate and collaborate as a team member with other professionals in conducting family-
        centered assessments. (CEC/EC ECSE 4 S8)
    6) Demonstrate knowledge of disabling and at-risk medical conditions that impact development.
        (CEC/EC ECSE 1 K4)
    7) Demonstrate understanding of the impact of illness and disability on families. (CEC/EC ECSE 1
    8) Demonstrate knowledge of the use and limitations of assessment instruments and the
        challenges of assessing young children. (CEC/EC ISCI 4 K4; VDOE SE-ECSE 3)
    9) Develop and modify individualized assessment strategies. (CEC/EC ISCI 4 S4; VDOE SE-ECSE
    10) Assess the development and learning of young children, including gathering background
         information. (CEC/EC ISCI 4 S1; ECSE 4 S3, 6; VDOE SE-ECSE 3)
    11) Select, adapt and use specialized formal, informal, and play-based assessments for infants,
         young children and their families. (CEC/EC EC8S2; VDOE SE-ECSE 3)
    12) Assist families in identifying their concerns, resources, and priorities. (CEC/EC ECSE 4 S1;
         VDOE SE-ECSE 3)
    13) Administer nonbiased formal and informal assessments. (CEC/EC ISCI 4 S2; ECSE 4 S5; VDOE
         SE-ECSE 3)
    14) Assess a young child’s environment. (CEC/EC ECSE 4 S11; VDOE SE-ECSE 3)
    15) Use technology to conduct assessments. (CEC/EC ISCI 4 S3;
    16) Interpret information from formal and informal assessments. (CEC/EC ISCI 4 S5; VDOE SE-
         ECSE 3)
    17) Use assessment information in making eligibility, program, and placement decisions for young
         children with exceptional learning needs, including those from culturally and/or linguistically
         diverse backgrounds. (CEC/EC ISCI 4 S6; ECSE 4 S5; VDOE SE-ECSE 3)
    18) Report assessment results to all stakeholders, including families, using effective
         communication skills. (CEC/EC ISCI 4 S7; ECSE 4 S10)
    19) Evaluate instruction and monitor progress of young children with exceptional learning needs.
         (CEC/EC ISCI 4 S8; ECSE 4 S3, 5, 11; VDOE SE-ECSE 3)
    20) Participate as a team member to integrate assessment results in the development and
         implementation of individualized family service plans and individualized education plans.
         (CEC/EC ECSE 4 S8)
    21) Evaluate services with families. (CEC/EC ECSE 4 S11; VDOE SE-ECSE 3)
    22) Create and maintain confidential records. (CEC/EC ISCI 4 S9)

5. Assessment Measures

Assessment measures may include, but are not limited to, the following:
    1) Conducting an assessment of family resources, priorities and concerns and write a reflection
    2) Completing written exams
    3) Fulfilling key CAEP Performance Assessment: Conduct developmental, hearing and vision
        screenings, and write a report.

6. Other Course Information


Review and Approval

May 11, 2015