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Pragmatics Profile of Everyday Communication Skills (revised edition)

This is a questionnaire to be used in interview form with parents, teachers or other carers. It helps practitioners gain an insight into how a child typically communicates in day-to-day interaction in familiar settings with people they know well, providing structured qualitative information.

It includes a manual which provides background information on the development and construction of the Pragmatics Profile, full administration instructions, a set of photocopy masters (comprising the two profiles), the record sheet, summary sheet and brief instructions sheet.

There are two profiles for children:

  • The Pragmatics Profile of Everyday Communication Skills in Pre-School Children –for use with pre-school children, from the age of nine months
  • The Pragmatics Profile of Everyday Communication Skills in School-Age Children –for use with school-age children, up to the age of 10 years.

There is also the adult profile available which can be used for secondary children.

Age range

9 months–10 years

Adult form available for use with secondary age children and post-16 students.

Who can use it?

All those with a professional interest in the development of language and communication.

What does it tell us?

The Pragmatics Profile for each of the two age ranges falls into four sections, covering the following.

  1. Communicative Functions: looks at the range of communicative functions that a child may express.
  2. Responses to Communication: looks at how the child responds and reacts to communication from others.
  3. Interaction and Conversation.
  4. Contextual Variation: looks at how the child’s communication varies depending on context such as different places, people, times of the day and topics.

The profile can be used for monitoring progress as the interviews can be carried out at agreed intervals.

Examples of targets or interventions that may be put in place after the assessment include the following.

  • Family setting aside regular time for interaction and conversation where parents give undivided attention to the child following their interests and initiations. The best time for this may be indicated by the section on context variation.
  • A social skills group exploring subjects such as getting someone to listen, thanking someone, asking for help, expressing emotions, how to say “no” and what to do if conversations go wrong.
  • Building on a particular strength and extending to another place (for example, extending expression skills identified in the home to school).
  • Setting specific targets such as asking for clarification from a teacher when the child is unsure about something.
  • Providing ways of expanding the child’s opportunity for communication in different situations and with different people.

Pros

  • It’s difficult to assess pragmatic skills in a single environment such as the clinic or school. This assessment enables the professional to build up a comprehensive picture of children’s communicative skills in a variety of everyday situations by means of structured interview procedure, to be used with parents, teachers or other carers. The assessment gives teachers an idea of how a child communicates and their communication skills inside and outside school. It is relatively easy to carry out and takes 30 minutes to do.
  • The assessment involves parents and enables them to recognise the very subtle way their children communicate across a range of situations and the areas in which they may be having unnoticed difficulties. It may also help parents to appreciate pre-linguistic attempts at communication as well as focusing on talking.
  • The assessment is independent of communication approach.

Cons

  • By its very nature, this approach does not lend itself to numerical analysis and as such there are no norm-referenced scores to compare with others.

Is there a cost?

No.

Where can I access it?

Manual, background information and profiles are available to download here