Date of Award:


Document Type:


Degree Name:

Master of Science (MS)


Communicative Disorders and Deaf Education

Department name when degree awarded

Communicative Disorders

Committee Chair(s)

Sonia Manuel-Dupont


Sonia Manuel-Dupont


Ann McKeehan


Deborah Byrnes


Speech-language pathologists are faced with the increasing problem of providing appropriate and nonbiased language assessment of minority language speakers. Currently available measures of language proficiency fail to provide adequate information about a Limited English Proficient student's language to determine the specific abilities and educational needs that he/she has.

Therefore, this study was an investigation of the use of a portfolio assessment method as a means of determining the language proficiency of bilingual Limited English Proficient students. The following measurements and information were included in the portfolio: (1) home and literacy background information, (2) parent, teacher, and student attitude information, (3) classroom observations, (4) criterion referenced tests, (5) writing samples, and (6) oral and written narrative samples.

Two bilingual students ages 11 and 12 comprised the sample used for investigation. The aforementioned measurements were completed for each child in order to determine the depth and breadth of information a portfolio assessment method may provide. Results of biographic information, ethnographic observations, and scores from each measure were reported independently. Results of the measures within the portfolio were then compared to one another to determine the consistency of information each provided.

Results show that the use of a portfolio assessment method with minority language students can provide information regarding that student's social and academic language proficiency that no single measure could provide alone. In addition, results show that the portfolio assessment method can provide important insight into the specific educational needs of individual language minority students.