Available courses

In this introduction to language sample analysis (LSA), listen to an interview with Dr. Jon Miller, Professor Emeritus (UW-Madison) and co-founder of SALT Software, as he talks about the role LSA plays in assessing productive language. Then get a feel for language sampling by listening to excerpts of language samples collected from various speakers in a variety of contexts. Follow this by listening to several school-based clinicians as they talk about how they use LSA and SALT software in their clinical practice. Finally, watch a short case study which illustrates how LSA can be used effectively to assess language production.

Learner outcomes

Upon completion of the course the participant will be able to:

  • Explain how language sample analysis can be part of best practice for assessing culturally and linguistically diverse populations.
  • Recognize features of oral language through critical listening.
  • List three reasons why language sample analysis should be used for oral language assessment.

Materials needed: Adobe Reader® or other PDF reader which is needed to view document files.

SALT Course Id: 1101
Level: Introductory
Time to complete: 1 hour

Because people apply their language differently in different sampling contexts, the decision of which sampling context to use is very important. The different sampling contexts covered in this course will help you choose the appropriate sampling context for clients of various ages and abilities. You will also learn techniques for eliciting consistent and useful language samples. Equipment needs, specifically digital recorders and playback systems, are also discussed

Learner outcomes:

Upon completion of the course the participant will be able to:

  • Select an appropriate sampling context based on a client's age.
  • List the skills and equipment needed to elicit language samples.
  • List the SALT reference databases available for age-matched comparisons.

Materials needed: Adobe Reader® or other PDF reader which is needed to view document files.

SALT Course Id: 1201
Level: Introductory
Time to complete: 1 hour

One of the most powerful analysis tools built into SALT is the ability to compare an individual language sample to age or grade-matched peers selected from the reference databases. In order for the comparison to be valid, however, the language samples should be elicited following the same protocol as was used to collect the database samples. In this course, you will learn about the SALT reference databases and how to collect comparable samples.

Learner outcomes:

Upon completion of the course the participant will be able to:

  • Elicit conversational language samples following the protocol used in the SALT Conversation database.
  • Elicit narrative language samples following the protocol used in the SALT Narrative SSS and SALT Narrative Story Retell databases.
  • Elicit expository language samples following the protocol used in the SALT Expository database.

Materials needed: Adobe Reader® or other PDF reader which is needed to view document files.

SALT Course Id: 1202
Level: Introductory
Time to complete: 1.5 hours

Transcription Quick Start is an abbreviated course to quickly learn or review SALT transcription conventions and the transcription process. Refer to courses 1301-1308 for detailed explanations and practice samples.

Learner outcomes:

Upon completion of the course the participant will be able to:

  • Enter a transcript using the SALT editor.
  • Transcribe language samples using basic SALT transcription conventions.
  • Check a transcript for errors.

Materials needed: Adobe Reader® or other PDF reader which is needed to view document files.

1300: Transcription Quick Start
Level: Introductory
Time to complete: 1 hour

At this time, ASHA will not accept this course for Professional Development hours.

This course introduces you to the transcription process, covering the necessary skills and equipment. It includes an activity where you use the SALT editor to type in a sample transcript and check it for errors.

Learner outcomes:

Upon completion of the course the participant will be able to:

  • Understand the process for transcribing language samples.
  • List materials and skills necessary for transcribing language samples.
  • Enter a transcript using the SALT editor.
  • Check a transcript for errors.

Materials needed:

  • SALT 20 or SALT 18 software. Older versions of the software may be used though you may notice differences in the menu structures and the reports.
  • Adobe Reader® or other PDF reader which is needed to view document files.

SALT Course Id: 1301
Level: Introductory
Time to complete: 1 hour

This course covers the format of the transcript, specifically:

  • Speaker identification ($ line)
  • Demographic and sample information (+ lines)
  • Timing information (- lines)
  • Utterance format
  • Punctuation
  • Transcriber comments

Learner outcomes:

Upon completion of the course the participant will be able to:

  • Complete SALT header information.
  • Initialize the clock and mark elapsed time.
  • Use SALT conventions: punctuation and transcriber comments.

Materials needed:

  • SALT 20 or SALT 18 software. Older versions of the software may be used though you may notice differences in the menu structures and the reports.
  • A digital playback system for playing the audio while you type in the text.
  • Adobe Reader® or other PDF reader which is needed to view document files.

1. Any copy of SALT 16 or SALT 2012 software. Older versions of the software may be used though you may notice differences in the menu structures and the reports.
2. A digital playback system for playing the audio while you type in the text.
3. Adobe Reader® which is needed to view document files.

SALT Course Id: 1302
Level: Introductory
Time to complete: 1 hour

Communication Unit (C-unit) segmentation is used for segmenting the transcripts in the SALT reference databases. Language sample transcripts which are compared to samples in the reference databases should also be segmented into C-units. By using C-units, language sample transcripts have consistent segmentation that is rule-governed. In this course, you will become familiar with C-units and learn how to segment utterances into C-units using the interactive modules, "Try It" and "Self Check".

Learner outcomes:

Upon completion of the course the participant will be able to:

  • Define a communication unit.
  • Segment utterances into communication units using the C-unit guide.

Materials needed:

  • SALT 20 or SALT 18 software. Older versions of the software may be used though you may notice differences in the menu structures and the reports.
  • A digital playback system for playing the audio while you type in the text.
  • Adobe Reader® which is needed to view document files.

SALT Course Id: 1303
Level: Introductory
Time to complete: 1 hour

This course covers the initial set of SALT transcription conventions. They include:

  • Bound morphemes
  • Mazes and part words
  • Pauses

These conventions are considered the essential conventions for SALT transcripts. By coding these conventions, basic analyses can be completed from the transcript. Study the rules and then practice them using the interactive "Try It" and "Self Check" modules.

Learner outcomes:

Upon completion of the course the participant will be able to:

  • Identify and code plurals, possessives, verb inflections, and contractions in language transcripts.
  • Define and code transcripts for mazes and part words.
  • Code pauses within a language transcript.

Materials needed:

  • SALT 20 or SALT 18 software. Older versions of the software may be used though you may notice differences in the menu structures and the reports.
  • A digital playback system for playing the audio while you type in the text.
  • Adobe Reader® which is needed to view document files.

SALT Course Id: 1304
Level: Introductory
Time to complete: 1 hour

This course covers the second set of SALT transcription conventions. They include:

  • Unintelligibility
  • Spelling conventions
  • Linked words
  • Sound effects and idiosyncratic forms
  • Root identification

Study the rules and then practice them using the interactive "Try It" and "Self Check" modules.

Learner outcomes:

Upon completion of the course the participant will be able to:

  • Code for unintelligible speech.
  • Use SALT spelling conventions.
  • Code for linked words, sound effects, and idiosyncratic word forms.
  • Identify root forms.

Materials needed:

  • SALT 20 or SALT 18 software. Older versions of the software may be used though you may notice differences in the menu structures and the reports.
  • A digital playback system for playing the audio while you type in the text.
  • Adobe Reader® or other PDF reader which is needed to view document files.

SALT Course Id: 1305
Level: Introductory
Time to complete: 1 hour

This course covers the final set of SALT transcription conventions. They include:

  • Gestures, nonverbal turns, overlapping speech, and parenthetical remarks.
    These conventions add useful detail to your language sample.
  • Omissions and errors.
    Learn how to mark omitted words and bound morphemes, as well as other word-level and utterance-level errors. It is important to accurately code omissions and errors within a language sample as they can be analyzed to determine the presence of a language disorder.
  • Devising your own unique coding schemes.
    You can mark essentially any language feature you are interested in. By marking errors or specific language features, clinicians can track progress in therapy with repeat language samples (e.g., document that the student made less pronoun errors after four months of therapy working on this goal).

Study the rules and then practice them using the interactive "Try It" and "Check".

Learner outcomes:

Upon completion of the course the participant will be able to:

  • Code language samples for omitted words and bound morphemes.
  • Code language samples using error codes.
  • Devise a unique coding scheme to mark a specific language feature.
  • Code language sample transcripts for gestures, nonverbal turns, overlapping speech, and parenthetical remarks.

Materials needed:

  • SALT 20 or SALT 18 software. Older versions of the software may be used though you may notice differences in the menu structures and the reports.
  • A digital playback system for playing the audio while you type in the text.
  • Adobe Reader® or other PDF reader which is needed to view document files.

SALT Course Id: 1306
Level: Introductory
Time to complete: 1 hour

Eight practice audios are provided which incorporate the various features of standard SALT transcription. Download and transcribe each audio sample. Then compare your transcription with the "master" transcript.

Learner outcomes:

Upon completion of the course the participant will be able to:

  • Transcribe samples following the standard SALT transcription format.
  • Code samples for optional features such as marking overlapping speech, omissions, errors, and inserting a final timing marker.
  • Use a digital playback system.

Materials needed:

  • SALT 20 or SALT 18 software. Older versions of the software may be used though you may notice differences in the menu structures and the reports.
  • A digital playback system for playing the audio while you type in the text.
  • Adobe Reader® or other PDF reader which is needed to view document files.

SALT Course Id: 1308
Level: Introductory
Time to complete: 1-3 hours

This course guides you through the process of analyzing language samples. You will listen to an introductory lecture, watch a video demonstration of the SALT software, complete directed exercises, and analyze a language sample using the software.

Learner outcomes:

Upon completion of the course the participant will be able to:

  • Name the steps in analyzing a language sample.
  • Generate reports selected from the Analyze and Database menus.
  • Change the comparison set and standard deviation interval for a database comparison.
  • Understand the results of a language sample analysis.

Materials needed:

  • SALT 20 or SALT 18 software. Older versions of the software may be used though you may notice differences in the menu structures and the reports.
  • Adobe Reader® or other PDF reader which is needed to view document files.

SALT Course Id: 1401
Level: Introductory
Time to complete: 2 hours

This course covers how to link two samples for side-by-side analysis. You will watch video demonstrations, complete directed exercises, and work through interactive modules to analyze language samples using the software.

Learner outcomes:

Upon completion of the course the participant will be able to:

  • State three scenarios when linking two samples together assists in language sample analysis.
  • Link two samples together using the software.
  • Generate reports from the analyze menu with linked samples
  • Compare linked samples to the reference database

Materials needed:

  • SALT 20 or SALT 18 software. Older versions of the software may be used though you may notice differences in the menu structures and the reports.
  • Adobe Reader® or other PDF reader which is needed to view document files.

SALT Course Id: 1402
Level: Intermediate

Time to complete: 1 hour

This course covers applying specialized coding schemes to language transcripts. You will watch video demonstrations, complete directed exercises, and work through interactive modules to code and analyze language samples using the software.

Learner outcomes:

Upon completion of the course the participant will be able to:

  • Apply a unique coding scheme to a language sample transcript.
  • Generate reports using SALT that are related to unique coding.

Materials needed:

  • SALT 20 or SALT 18 software. Older versions of the software may be used though you may notice differences in the menu structures and the reports.
  • Adobe Reader® or other PDF reader which is needed to view document files.

SALT Course Id: 1403
Level: Intermediate
Time to complete: 1.5 hours

The Subordination Index (SI) is a measure of syntactic complexity which produces a ratio of total number of clauses (main and subordinate) to the total number of c-units. The SI analysis counts clauses. In this course you will learn how to score language transcripts for SI using SALT and how to compare SI scores to the reference database.

Learner outcomes:

Upon completion of the course the participant will be able to:

  • Describe Subordination Index and how it is used to assess syntax.
  • Score a language sample for SI following the SI scoring rules.
  • Use SALT software to insert SI scores.
  • Use SALT software to compare SI scores to samples selected from the SALT reference database.

Materials needed:

  • SALT 20 or SALT 18 software. Older versions of the software may be used though you may notice differences in the menu structures and the reports.
  • Adobe Reader® or other PDF reader which is needed to view document files.

SALT Course Id: 1501
Level: Intermediate
Time to complete: 2 hours

The Narrative Scoring Scheme (NSS) is an index of speaker’s ability to produce a coherent narrative. It was developed to create a more objective narrative structure scoring system and is based on an earlier version, Rubric for Completing a Story Grammar Analysis, developed by the Madison Metropolitan School District SALT working group in 1998, to create an objective narrative structure scoring system following the work of Stein and Glenn, 1979; 1982. This scoring procedure combines many of the abstract categories of Story Grammar, adding features of cohesion, connecting events, rationale for characters’ behavior, and referencing. Each of the scoring categories has explicit examples to establish scoring criteria, reducing the abstractness of the story grammar categories. In this course you will learn how to score language transcripts for NSS using SALT and how to compare NSS scores to the reference databases.

Learner outcomes:

Upon completion of the course the participant will be able to:

  • Describe Narrative Scoring Scheme and how it is used to assess narrative structure.
  • Score a language sample for NSS following the NSS scoring rules.
  • Use SALT software to insert NSS scores.
  • Use SALT software to compare NSS scores to samples selected from the SALT reference databases.

Materials needed:

  • SALT 20 or SALT 18 software. Older versions of the software may be used though you may notice differences in the menu structures and the reports.
  • Adobe Reader® or other PDF reader which is needed to view document files.

SALT Course Id: 1502
Level: Intermediate
Time to complete: 1.5 hours

The Expository Scoring Scheme (ESS) assesses the structure of expository language using a scoring rubric consisting of the essential characteristics of a coherent expository where the speaker explains how to play a game or sport. These characteristics include: object of the game, preparations, how to start, course of play, rules, scoring, duration, strategies, terminology, and cohesion. Learn how to score language transcripts for ESS using SALT and how to compare ESS scores from an individual sample to scores from samples selected from the reference databases.

Learner outcomes:

Upon completion of the course the participant will be able to:

  • Describe Expository Scoring Scheme and how it is used to assess expository structure.
  • Score a language sample for ESS following the ESS scoring rules.
  • Use SALT software to insert ESS scores.
  • Use SALT software to compare ESS scores to samples selected from the SALT reference databases.

Materials needed:

  • SALT 20 or SALT 18 software. Older versions of the software may be used though you may notice differences in the menu structures and the reports.
  • Adobe Reader® or other PDF reader which is needed to view document files.

SALT Course Id: 1503
Level: Intermediate
Time to complete: 1.5 hours

1504: PSS - Persuasive Scoring Scheme
Level: Intermediate
Time to complete: 1.5 hours

The Persuasive Scoring Scheme (PSS) provides a measure to assess the structure of a persuasive argument. Persuasive language skills are an important part of the secondary curriculum and a persuasive language sample and PSS score is an effective way to assess if speakers are making meeting standards. The PSS score is based on the following characteristics: issue identification and desired change, supporting reasons, other point of view, compromises, conclusion, cohesion, and effectiveness. Learn how to score language transcripts for PSS using SALT and how to compare PSS scores from an individual sample to scores from samples selected from the Persuasion reference database.

Learner outcomes:

Upon completion of the course the participant will be able to:

  • Describe Persuasion Scoring Scheme and how it is used to assess expository structure.
  • Score a language sample for PSS following the PSS scoring rules.
  • Use SALT software to insert PSS scores.
  • Use SALT software to compare PSS scores to samples selected from the SALT reference databases.

Materials needed:

  • SALT 20 or SALT 18 software. Older versions of the software may be used though you may notice differences in the menu structures and the reports.
  • Adobe Reader® or other PDF reader which is needed to view document files.

At this time, ASHA will not accept this course for Professional Development hours.

Bilingual (Spanish/English) assessment focuses on identifying language disorder among bilingual children, i.e., children whose native language is Spanish and who are learning English as a second language. In the past such children have often been either over diagnosed, failing to consider English as the second language, or under diagnosed, assuming that more time was needed to master English. Recent research has addressed these issues, highlighting the need for language assessments that are comparable in each language and that have normative data on bilingual speakers. These issues and more will be covered in this course.

Learner outcomes:

  • Provide rationale for assessing language development in both Spanish and English.
  • Recognize the importance of language sample analysis in the assessment process.
  • List three challenges associated with bilingual language assessment.

Materials needed: Adobe Reader® or other PDF reader which is needed to view document files.

SALT Course Id: 1601
Level: Introductory

Time to complete: 30 minutes

At this time, ASHA will not accept this course for Professional Development hours.

One of the most powerful analysis tools built into SALT is the ability to compare an individual language sample to age or grade-matched peers selected from the reference databases. In order for the comparison to be valid, however, the language samples should be elicited following the same protocol as was used to collect the database samples. In this course you will learn about SALT's Bilingual (Spanish/English) and Monolingual Spanish reference databases and how to collect comparable samples.

Learner outcomes

  • Describe the participants whose samples are stored in the Bilingual Spanish/English and Monolingual Spanish reference databases.
  • Describe the sampling protocol used in the Bilingual Spanish/English and Monolingual Spanish reference databases.
  • Elicit English and Spanish language samples following the database protocol.

Materials Needed: Adobe Reader® which is needed to view document files.

SALT Course Id: 1602
Level: Introductory

Time to complete: 30 minutes

At this time, ASHA will not accept this course for Professional Development hours.

The standard SALT conventions also apply to Spanish samples and are not repeated here. This course covers the following conventions which are specific to Bilingual (Spanish/English) samples:

  • Setting up a bilingual Spanish transcript
  • Spanish character set
  • Overview of transcription conventions
  • Modified communication units
  • Identifying Spanish root forms
  • Reflexive vs non-reflexive pronouns
  • Plural bound morphemes
  • Bound pronominal clitics
  • Omissions
  • Spanish spelling conventions
  • Customized codes

Prerequisite: Familiarity with the standard SALT transcription conventions

Learner outcomes

  • Segment utterances based on modified communication units.
  • Transcribe Spanish language samples using the SALT transcription conventions.
  • Use the SALT software to automatically identify the root forms of Spanish verbs.

Materials needed:

  • SALT 20 or SALT 18 software. Older versions of the software may be used though you may notice differences in the menu structures and the reports.
  • Adobe Reader® or other PDF reader which is needed to view document files.

SALT Course Id: 1603
Level: Intermediate

Time to complete: 2 hours

At this time, ASHA will not accept this course for Professional Development hours.

Three practice audios are provided which incorporate all the features of Spanish transcription. Download and transcribe each audio sample. Then compare your transcription with the "master" transcript.

Learner outcomes

  • Transcribe Spanish samples following the SALT transcription format.
  • Code samples for features specific to bilingual transcription, such as marking code-switched words and identifying root forms.
  • Use a digital playback system.

Materials needed:

  • SALT 20 or SALT 18 software. Older versions of the software may be used though you may notice differences in the menu structures and the reports.
  • A digital playback system for playing the audio while you type in the text.
  • Adobe Reader® or other PDF reader which is needed to view document files.

SALT Course Id: 1604
Level: Intermediate
Time to complete: 1-3 hours

At this time, ASHA will not accept this course for Professional Development hours.