Gross Motor Assessment of Preschool Children with Special Needs: Instrument Selection Considerations

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Lauriece L. Zittel Northern Illinois University

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Accurate gross motor assessment of preschool children with special needs is necessary for quality intervention. This paper will identify critical factors for the selection of a preschool gross motor assessment instrument. Nine commercially available tools that purport to measure gross motor skill are critiqued, in table form, according to identified criteria. The criteria include purpose of the assessment, technical adequacy of the tool, nondiscriminatory factors, administrative ease, instructional link, and ecological validity of the instrument. Key features within each of the criteria will be used to review and analyze each instrument. This review illustrates that assessment tools vary in their ability to meet the assessment needs of preschool children suspected of having motor delays, and such tools therefore must be carefully selected.

The research for this manuscript was completed during doctoral work at Oregon State University, supported under a grant funded by the Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services (#H029D20020).

Lauriece L. Zittel is with the Department of Physical Education at Northern Illinois University, Anderson Hall, Dekalb, IL 60115.

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