Sample Size for Measuring Grammaticality in Preschool Children from Picture Elicited Language Samples

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Purpose: The purpose of this study was to investigate whether a shorter language sample elicited with fewer pictures (i.e., 7) would yield a percent grammatical utterances (PGU) score similar to that computed from a longer language sample elicited with 15 pictures for 3-year-old children. Method: Language samples were elicited by asking forty 3-year-old children with varying language skills to talk about pictures in response to prompts. PGU scores were computed for each of two 7-picture sets and for the full set of 15 pictures.Results: PGU scores for the two 7-picture sets did not differ significantly from, and were highly correlated with, PGU scores for the full set and with each other. Agreement for making pass–fail decisions between each 7-picture set and the full set and between the two 7-picture sets ranged from 80% to 100%. Conclusion: The current study suggests that the PGU measure is robust enough that it can be computed on the basis of 7, at least in 3-year-old children whose language samples were elicited using similar procedures.



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