The Survey of Parent/Provider Expectations And Knowledge (SPEAK®) is a measurement tool developed by the TMW Center in 2014 to assess parents’ and providers’ understanding of early childhood cognitive and language development. Given the pivotal role that parents and caregivers—and in particular, the quality of language and interaction they provide—play in shaping young children’s development, it is necessary to assess what they know and believe about that process. In fact, TMW Center research has found that parents’ knowledge of early childhood development is predictive of how much brain-building behavior they engage in, and ultimately, of their child’s skill formation. One of our studies found that a parent’s beliefs about child development explain up to 18.7% of the variation in child language skills 18 months later.
And yet, prior to the development of the SPEAK®, the early childhood field had no means of measuring this critical input.
The survey is currently used by TMW Center researchers as well as researchers at partner institutions around the country, to assess parents’ and caregivers’ baseline knowledge of early childhood development and to evaluate the efficacy of interventions designed to enhance that understanding. It is available (to partners) online in both English and Spanish.
To explore research partnerships using the SPEAK®, contact email@example.com.