What Does a Speech Assessment Involve?

Speech and communication skills are very important for children growing up. It teaches them to communicate with the world around them and make connections. So when a child comes to us needing either psychological or speech support, we would firstly assess the issue and severity, then think of treatment options based on that.

Common issues our speech pathologists see are children presenting with speech delays and disorders such as articulation and producing sounds, as well as pragmatic language difficulties, and using and understanding language and body-language to participate in exchanging information, ideas and needs. There are a number of different speech and language issues, and although a speech pathologist is able to diagnose a speech disorder in a short assessment, a thorough assessment is required to find the most suitable intervention to implement.

How do our Speech Pathologists look for speech difficulties?

Assessments can involve interviews, formal standardised tests, assessment through natural play, conversations and other techniques.

  • Observations from a child’s interactions and communication with, for example, their parents, peers and teachers

  • Questionnaires or interviews, rating scales and checklists from parents, teachers or carers

  • Language sampling

  • Information gathering from other professionals a child interacts with, for example, their teachers, doctors and psychologists. Working together with other professionals is important for us because it helps create a full picture of what’s going on.

Together, these assessments provide information necessary to determine a speech disorder and provide a stronger understanding of a child’s strengths and weaknesses. This careful process will allow our speech pathologists to focus on the specific difficulties a child is being confronted with and implement a personalised treatment plan.

What would one of our speech and language assessments cover?

  • Speech delays and disorders: Articulation and producing speech sounds

  • Expressive and receptive language: Using and understanding language to participate in exchanging information, ideas and needs

  • Augmentative and alternative communication: Using pictures, communication boards and/or assistive devices to support communication

  • Fluency: Controlling and reducing stuttering

  • Feeding and swallowing: Support infants, children and adults who have difficulty eating, drinking, and participating in mealtimes

  • Pre-literacy and literacy skills: Reading, writing, and spelling skills

  • Voice: Managing loudness, pitch, and quality of voice

  • Cognitive-communication disorders: Organising thoughts, planning, attention, memory and problem solving

  • Social communication disorders: Communicating for social purposes, adapting communication according to social context, and following social communication rules 

If you feel your child may have some speech, language or communication difficulties or you want to find out more about our speech pathology services - book an appointment with one of our speech pathologists, or give our team a call on (03) 9882-8874.