Modification and verification of the Infant–Toddler Meaningful Auditory Integration Scale: a psychometric analysis combining item response theory with classical test theory
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Early prelingual auditory development (EPLAD) is a fundamental and important process in the speech and language development of infants and toddlers. The Infant–Toddler Meaningful Auditory Integration Scale (ITMAIS) is a widely used measurement tool for EPLAD, however it has not yet undergone a comprehensive psychometric analysis. The aim of this research was to modify and verify the psychometric properties of ITMAIS using a combination of Item Response Theory (IRT) and Classical Test Theory (CTT). Methods Stage 1—1730 children were retrospectively recruited to enable the application of an IRT model, specifically the graded response model, to modify the ITMAIS. Stage 2—another 450 infants and toddlers with normal hearing or permanent hearing loss before auditory intervention were recruited to verify the psychometric properties of the modified ITMAIS (ITMAIS-m) using the CTT method. Results Using the metric of the graded response model, by removing item 2 from the ITMAIS, ITMAIS-m demonstrated discrimination parameters ranging from 3.947 to 5.431, difficulty parameters from − 1.146 to 1.150, item information distributed between 4.798 and 9.259 and a test information score of 48.061. None of the items showed differential item functioning. ITMAIS-m was further verified in Stage 2, showing Cronbach’s α of 0.919 and item-total correlations ranging from 0.693 to 0.851. There was good convergent validity of ITMAIS-m with other auditory outcome measure (r = 0.932) and pure tone average thresholds (r ranging from − 0.670 to − 0.909), as well as a high ability to discriminate between different hearing grades (Cohen d ranging from 0.41 to 5.83). Conclusions The ITMAIS-m is a reliable and valid tool for evaluating EPLAD in infants and toddlers, which can be efficiently and precisely applied in clinical practice. The combined use of IRT and CTT provides a powerful means to modify psychometrically robust scales aimed at childhood auditory outcome measurements.
Health and Quality of Life Outcomes;
Yang, F., Zhao, F., Zheng, Y. and Li, G. (2020) 'Modification and verification of the Infant–Toddler Meaningful Auditory Integration Scale: a psychometric analysis combining item response theory with classical test theory', Health and Quality of Life Outcomes, 18(1), pp.1-12. https://doi.org/10.1186/s12955-020-01620-9
Article published in Health and Quality of Life Outcomes available open access at https://doi.org/10.1186/s12955-020-01620-9
Cardiff Metropolitan University (Grant ID: Cardiff Metropolian (Internal))
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