Pragmatics fragmented: The factor structure of the Dutch Children’s Communication Checklist

H.M. Geurts, C. Hartman, S Verte, J. Oosterlaan, H. Roeyers, J.A. Sergeant

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

Background A number of disorders are associated with pragmatic difficulties. Instruments that can make subdivisions within the larger construct of pragmatics could be important tools for disentangling profiles of pragmatic difficulty in different disorders. The deficits underlying the observed pragmatic difficulties may be different for different disorders. Aims To study the construct validity of a pragmatic language questionnaire. Method & Procedures The construct of pragmatics is studied by applying exploratory factor analysis EFA and confirmatory factor analysis to the parent version of the Dutch Children's Communication Checklist CCC Bishop 1998. Parent ratings of 1589 typically developing children and 481 children with a clinical diagnosis were collected. Four different factor models derived from the original CCC scales and five different factor models based on EFA were compared with each other. The models were crossvalidated. Outcomes & Results The EFAderived models were substantively different from the originally proposed CCC factor structure. EFA models gave a slightly better fit than the models based on the original CCC scales, though neither provided a good fit to the parent data. Coherence seemed to be part of language form and not of pragmatics, which is in line with the adaptation of the CCC, the CCC2 Bishop 2003. Most pragmatic items clustered together in one factor and these pragmatic items also clustered with items related to social relationships and specific interests. Conclusions & Implications The nine scales of the original CCC do not reflect the underlying factor structure. Therefore, scale composition may be improved on and scores on subscale level need to be interpreted cautiously. Therefore, in interpreting the CCC profiles, the overall measure might be more informative than the postulated subscales as more information is needed to determine which constructs the suggested subscales are actually measuring. © 2009 Informa UK Ltd All rights reserved: reproduction in whole or part not permitted.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)549-574
JournalInternational Journal of Language and Communication Disorders
Volume5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2009

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