This study examines the feasibility of using the Porch Index of Communicative Ability in Children (PICAC), a standardized test of general communication, as an out-of-setting school discourse evaluation tool. The rationale for considering the PICAC was based on the expectation that the test creates a teaching-learning context where materials, tasks, instructional talk and assistance reflect the practices that occur in traditional classrooms. The comparison of the PICAC test to full day school transcripts provided support for using the PICAC as a criterion reference measure that could facilitate sharing of information and results among professionals and could promote use of classroom learning processes more individualized to a particular student. Learning outcomes: The reader will be able to: (1) describe school discourses and (2) describe similarities between PICAC administration and classroom instruction. © 2006 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
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