Date of this Version
White paper, University of Nebraska-Lincoln & University of Nebraska Medical Center, Munroe Meyer Institute, March 1, 2022
Assessment of emerging literacy in young children is generally limited to either skill development in children over 3 years of age or the quality and context of young children’s early literacy experiences. Although there has been promotion of their early literacy experiences, assessment of emerging pre-literacy behaviors in children younger than 3 years has yet to be organized into a single tool.
Preliminary work on the Infant Toddler Literacy Assessment (ITLA) has progressed through initial steps of scale development and shown promise as a criterionbased, standardized assessment for tracking children’s pre-literacy behaviors and guiding practitioners in supporting development of those behaviors in populations that might otherwise show delays later-on. Previous analyses of data on 450+ children provided statistical support of a developmental sequence of ITLA exemplar behaviors, from easiest or earliest learned to later developed skills. Results of the present study showed the ITLA-3 has moderate construct validity with the PPVT™-IV and demonstrates one overall construct of pre-literacy across its 15 exemplars and 105 behaviors. Evidence now exists to support use of ITLA-3 by early childhood teachers to assess and guide the advancement of pre-literacy behaviors in infants and toddlers. Ongoing development of the ITLA-3 is recommended for further standardization.