Factor 5 - Planning for language and communication development should be individualized and systematically guided by ongoing assessment and monitoring.
To guide our team in identifying evidence shown to support linguistic competence, we followed definitions of evidence described in Evidence-Based Practice in the Early Childhood Field (Buysse & Wesley, 2006). In this book, specific to the field of early childhood, evidence includes: 1) "the best available research" (based on research studies, evaluations, objective measurements of child progress, and systematic literature reviews), 2) practitioner experience or professional and/or family wisdom (based on personal observation, experience, professional or expert consensus, position papers, policy statements and professional judgment), and 3) consumers' values and beliefs, which include personal beliefs, concerns, and expectations of consumers (parents and professionals).
Factor 5 Evidence Summary
The evidence supporting Factor 5 centers on professional insights and experiences addressing the benefits of developing and implementing an assessment-driven, systematic language planning process to guide recommendations for choosing and monitoring strategies and approaches to best facilitate language acquisition and the recommended components of this process.
The literature discusses the critical role of assessment in identifying which language(s) and modalities will best achieve the goal of facilitating early language acquisition as well as appropriate strategies to facilitate language acquisition to match the language input used to a child's sensory abilities (French, 1999). Documented is the benefit of using a systematic language planning process that is guided by assessment, documents a child's language proficiencies in both visual and auditory modalities, and uses assessment findings to choose and monitor recommendations for approaches and strategies unique to each child's profile (Jamieson, 2003). Professional wisdom and experience support the importance of a collaborative, family-centered assessment process that includes a variety of measures to provide a comprehensive picture of a child's communicative abilities in both visual and auditory modalities (Hafer & Stredler-Brown, 2003; Stredler-Brown, 2010). Considerations for what components are integral to effective assessment and planning are also discussed within the literature (Anderson & Reilly, 2002; Easterbrooks & Baker, 2002; French, 1999; JCIH, 2013).