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Bus Story Test (Renfrew Language Scales)

This assessment is a test of oral narrative skills, measured by a story recall task. Both the grammatical complexity of the child’s utterances and the information load used is scored.

Age range

3–8 years

Who can use it?

Teachers and speech and language therapists.

How is it used?

  • The tester shares a textless story picture book with the child. The child listens to the tester telling the story and then, with the picture book to prompt them, retells the story.
  • The child’s story recall is recorded, preferably on video.
  • The video then has to be accurately transcribed.
  • The transcription is scored, using rules set out in the manual, for grammatical complexity and information load. Age-equivalent scores can be calculated for each scale.
  • The manual should be consulted for full information prior to using this assessment.

What can it tell us?

The assessment gives us age-equivalent scores for grammatical complexity and information load in a story recall task.

Pros

  • This is quite a quick test of narrative skill for children in this age group.
  • Most children really like the picture book and story and most also enjoy being videoed.
  • The analysis procedure is also fairly quick and simple in comparison to some other narrative procedures, and therefore practical to use.
  • Normed at monthly intervals to enable production of comparative results.

Cons

  • This assessment is designed for use with English-speaking children. The age-equivalent scores are not valid where other languages are used, including BSL.
  • The child won’t necessarily use the full range of grammatical constructions that they’re able to use on this assessment, so other tests and analysis of language samples would also be necessary to provide a full assessment of use of grammar.

Is there a cost? 

Yes.

Where can I access it?

You can access this assessment on the Winslow Resources website.