Screening vs Assessment

What is the difference between a screening and a Speech and Language assessment?

A screening allows parents to see if their child is meeting their milestones for their age.  The results will inform parents of any missed milestones but cannot provide specific information as to why they may be having difficulty reaching the missed milestone. Screening is a great option to make sure your child is on track .

Check out the First Words Communication Checkup!  Parents can access the Communication Checkup to screen their child’s development. The tool screens your child’s speech and language milestones for their age as well as other areas of their development.  Get instant results as well as where to go for help if needed.

If your results recommend a speech and language assessment, you can complete the intake process by filling out the family information form and provide your personal information directly into our secure registration system. This will send a copy of your child’s screening results to the agency listed on your results and will complete the referral process.  All of the information will be sent to our triage team at the CHEO Access Team. Someone will then contact you to schedule an appointment.

An assessment is testing completed by a Speech-Language Pathologist that will give us all the information we need to best help your child build their speech and language.  Your child must have an assessment completed before they can start to receive therapy.

What can I expect at an assessment?

  • You and your child will come and play with a Speech-Language Pathologist for approximately 1.5 hours.  During this time, we are paying close attention your child’s speech patterns and to how much language your child understands and can communicate.
  • At the end of the assessment, you will be provided a detailed report of which speech and language areas your child is having difficulty with. This report will be used to organize and determine a speech therapy plan for your child.
  • A copy of this report may be mailed to you and your child’s paediatrician or family physician.