ABSTRACT

The Assessment Battery for Communication (ABaCo) is a new clinical instrument for the evaluation of communicative abilities in patients with neuropsychological and psychiatric disorders, such as aphasia, right hemispheric damage, closed head injury, autism and schizophrenia. ABaCo consists of 5 scales, investigating comprehension and production of linguistic and extralinguistic acts, paralinguistic expressions, appropriateness with respect to discourse and social norms, and management of conversation. Validity measures (content and construct validity) and reliability measures (inter-rater reliability and internal consistency) were computed. The experts’ content validity evaluations indicate an excellent match between test items and the measurement of pragmatic abilities, as well as the suitability of the battery for both children and adults. Regarding the other psychometric measures, computed on 390 normal children in different age groups, factor analysis shows the validity of the underlying theoretical construct. Reliability analyses show a high inter-rater agreement, suggesting that the battery can be administered and scored by any trained judge, and a good internal consistency, suggesting that the various items that make up each scale are coherent and contribute to the measurement of communicative abilities.

KEYWORD

Assessment, Communication, Pragmatic abilities, Battery, Cognitive Pragmatics

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