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Oral Passage Understanding Scale

Ages: 5 to 21 years

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Age Range: 5 to 21 years
Administration: Individual; Examiner reads a passage and asks related questions from an easel and the examinee responds orally—no reading or writing required
Administration Time: 10 to 20 minutes
Norm-referenced: Age- and grade-based standard scores and percentiles, test-age and grade equivalents
Oral Passage Understanding Scale Complete Kit: Easel (test plates), examiner’s manual, and 10 record forms. Boxed. 2017.
Qualification Level: B
The Oral Passage Understanding Scale is a new measure of listening (auditory) comprehension. It evaluates a person's ability to listen to passages read aloud and recall information about them. This ability is key to success in the classroom, as well as in social and occupational settings. The OPUS also measures memory skills, which are integral to listening comprehension.
The OPUS shares the same underlying theory as the new Comprehensive Assessment of Spoken Language, Second Edition (CASL-2) and the Oral and Written Language Scales, Second Edition (OWLS-II). Since the author based all three tests on the Integrative Language Theory, they provide a cohesive evaluation across a broad range of language areas. While the OWLS-II provides an evaluation of oral and written language abilities, the CASL-2 offers a more in-depth picture of 14 spoken language skills. The new OPUS takes this a step further and reveals how well a person can integrate and apply many of these skills. Although it's an excellent companion test to the CASL-2, you can also use it on its own anytime you need a quick measure of listening comprehension.
Applications and Uses
Speech–language pathologists and other professionals can administer this versatile instrument in a variety of settings, including schools, clinics, hospitals, private practices, and intervention programs. Use the OPUS when you need to evaluate response to intervention (RTI) and track improvement over time. It can also help you answer a variety of referral questions. For example:
  • Can a student sufficiently understand and retain information heard in class?
  • Are listening difficulties contributing to a child's social skill challenges?
  • Does this college student need someone to take notes in class for him?
Use the OPUS on its own anytime you need to measure how well an individual understands orally presented information. It provides important evidence for everyone involved in treatment, so you can help children and young adults reach their potential at school, at home, at work, and in the community.
What It Measures
The OPUS assesses the comprehension of spoken language in a natural context, a skill that is fundamental to classroom learning. It evaluates the ability to integrate and apply knowledge in three structural categories of language:
  • Lexical/Semantic: Knowledge and use of words and word combinations
  • Syntactic: Knowledge and use of grammar
  • Supralinguistic: Knowledge and use of language in which meaning is not directly available from the surface lexical and syntactic information
Measuring higher-level comprehension skills, including inference and prediction, yields more detailed information beyond simply whether or not the individual can comprehend. These skills require deeper processing abilities and thus differentiate typically developing individuals from those with language and learning delays or disorders.
The OPUS also measures memory skills, which are integral to listening comprehension. While the CASL-2 attempts to remove memory as much as possible in order to isolate and test a specific skill, the OPUS includes memory because it's an important part of listening comprehension in everyday life.
How It Works
The OPUS consists of 17 passages, each with 7 to 10 associated questions. Divided into six Item Sets, these passages allow a brief administration time of just 10 to 20 minutes. Each Item Set has 5 passages and up to 44 items. Selecting the appropriate Item Set, based on the examinee's age and ability, ensure that you are administering developmentally appropriate items.
The carefully crafted arrangement of OPUS Passages appear in order of difficultly and offer a variety of content and styles. The passages taken from published works and other written passages reflect the type of material a person is likely to encounter in everyday life. There are enough passages included that if a child has difficultly with one, there are still four more in which he or she can succeed.
The OPUS components include a record form, easel, manual, and training audio files. The OPUS Form features Item Analysis Worksheets to identify strengths and areas for improvement and to help you write IEP goals and intervention plans. The perforated Item Analysis Worksheet easily detaches from the form as needed. The self-standing OPUS Easel includes the passages, items, scoring criteria, and samples of correct and incorrect responses. The tabs at the beginning of each Item Set help you easily find the one you need. Each sample response listed in the easel has an assigned a letter to use as shorthand for recording responses on the OPUS Form, and if the examinee's response is not included you can write it in the space provided on the form.
You can score the items during an administration, but if a response is unclear, you have the option of writing the response on the form and reviewing it later and assigning a score. After administration, add up the passage scores to find the Item Set Total Raw Score. You can easily convert this to age- or grade-based standard scores to describe the examinee's overall listening comprehension ability.
Technical Information
Standardization for the OPUS included a sample of 1,517 individuals ages 5 to 21 years. The stratified sample matches recent U.S. Census data for gender, race/ethnicity, parents' education level, and geographic region so you can confidently use the OPUS with a wide range of individuals. The OPUS and CASL-2 are co-normed, supporting the validity of both tests and making them wonderful companions. A clinical validation sample of 204 individuals demonstrates that the CASL-2 can differentiate between typically developing individuals and those with the following diagnoses:
  • Expressive and/or receptive language disorder
  • Hearing impairment
  • Autism spectrum disorder
  • Social (pragmatic) communication disorder
  • Intellectual disability
  • Learning disability
  • Developmental delay
The OPUS has strong internal consistency and test-retest and interrater reliability, demonstrating the stability and reliability of results over time and across raters. Expected standard score correlations with other measures of oral language, including the CASL-2, support the OPUS's validity.
Save $$$ by purchasing the combo package of CASL-2 and its companion test, OPUS (Oral Passage Understanding Scale). You’ll receive the CASL-2 Complete Kit: 10 Comprehensive Forms (Ages 3 – 21;11); Easel 1; Easel 2; Easel 3; and Examiner’s Manual PLUS the OPUS Complete Kit: Easel (test plates), Examiner’s Manual, and 10 record forms. Boxed. (2017).
TM872 -  Oral Passage Understanding Scale (OPUS) Complete Kit $310.00 
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TMF873 -  Oral Passage Understanding Scale Forms (10) $46.00 
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