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Latent class analysis of reading, decoding, and writing performance using the Academic Performance Test: concurrent and discriminating validity

Authors Cogo-Moreira H, Carvalho CAF, Kida ASB, de Avila CRB, Salum GA, Moriyama TS, Gadelha A, Rohde LA, Moura LM, Jackowski AP, Mari JJ

Received 26 March 2013

Accepted for publication 16 May 2013

Published 14 August 2013 Volume 2013:9 Pages 1175—1185

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/NDT.S45785

Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 2

Hugo Cogo-Moreira,1 Carolina Alves Ferreira Carvalho,2 Adriana de Souza Batista Kida,2 Clara Regina Brandão de Avila,2 Giovanni Abrahão Salum,3,5 Tais Silveira Moriyama,1,4 Ary Gadelha,1,5 Luis Augusto Rohde,3,5 Luciana Monteiro de Moura,1 Andrea Parolin Jackowski,1 Jair de Jesus Mari1

1Department of Psychiatry, Federal University of São Paulo, São Paulo, 2Department of Hearing and Speech Pathology, Federal University of São Paulo, São Paulo, 3Department of Psychiatry, Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul, Rio Grande do Sul, 4Department of Psychiatry, University of São Paulo, São Paulo, 5National Institute for Developmental Psychiatry for Children and Adolescent, (National Counsel of Technological and Scientific Development), Brazil

Aim: To explore and validate the best returned latent class solution for reading and writing subtests from the Academic Performance Test (TDE).
Sample: A total of 1,945 children (6–14 years of age), who answered the TDE, the Development and Well-Being Assessment (DAWBA), and had an estimated intelligence quotient (IQ) higher than 70, came from public schools in São Paulo (35 schools) and Porto Alegre (22 schools) that participated in the ‘High Risk Cohort Study for Childhood Psychiatric Disorders’ project. They were on average 9.52 years old (standard deviation = 1.856), from the 1st to 9th grades, and 53.3% male. The mean estimated IQ was 102.70 (standard deviation = 16.44).
Methods: Via Item Response Theory (IRT), the highest discriminating items (‘a’>1.7) were selected from the TDE subtests of reading and writing. A latent class analysis was run based on these subtests. The statistically and empirically best latent class solutions were validated through concurrent (IQ and combined attention deficit hyperactivity disorder [ADHD] diagnoses) and discriminant (major depression diagnoses) measures.
Results: A three-class solution was found to be the best model solution, revealing classes of children with good, not-so-good, or poor performance on TDE reading and writing tasks. The three-class solution has been shown to be correlated with estimated IQ and to ADHD diagnosis. No association was observed between the latent class and major depression.
Conclusion: The three-class solution showed both concurrent and discriminant validity. This work provides initial evidence of validity for an empirically derived categorical classification of reading, decoding, and writing performance using the TDE. A valid classification encourages further research investing correlates of reading and writing performance using the TDE.

Keywords: Academic Performance Test, TDE, decoding, writing, validity

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