Gesell Glossary

A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z


A

Adaptive Skills: Skills such as social responsibility, self-help skills, community self-sufficiency and social adjustment that allow the child to adjust and function in daily life.  Measured by Gesell’s developmental assessment tools – GDO-R and GES.

Age Appropriate: One of three performance level ratings on the GDO-R and GES which indicates that the child has the skills and behaviors typical of his or her age-matched peers.


B


C

Child Recording Form (CRF): A booklet that contains all the pages necessary for the examiner to record observations and the child’s responses to tasks. Perforated pages can be easily removed for the child’s work, and for the Summary Profile Form. There is a different CRF for the GDO-R and the GES.

Chronological Age: Actual age in years, months and days, calculated by subtracting date of birth from date of assessment; always written with a superscript for months.

Concern: One of three performance level ratings which indicates that a child’s responses are atypical from age-matched peers and raises questions that were not answered by administering the GDO-R and/or GES.

Criterion-Referenced Assessment: An assessment that measures a child’s performance against a set criteria or objectives rather than against another student’s performance.  Both the GDO-R and GES are criterion-referenced assessments.


D

Developmental Age: An age in years and half years which best describes a child’s collective behavior and performances on a developmental scale. Developmental age may be equal to, older or younger than a child’s chronological age. A Developmental Age encompasses a child’s social, emotional, intellectual, and physical make up.  

Developmental Scale: A continuum of developmental ages and associated behaviors compiled from responses to tasks for each age group and confirmed by a set of experts and established developmental theory.


E

Emerging: One of three performance level ratings on the GDO-R and GES which indicates that the child consistently completes some age appropriate tasks with ease, but has less success with others.


F


G

GDO-R Examiner’s Manual: A Gesell manual ©2011 that contains information about the rationale, theory and development of the GDO-R. It provides specific information about the administration, scoring and interpretation of all GDO-R tasks.

GDO-R Examiner’s Script: A spiral-bound book ©2011 that provides the standardized instructions for administration of the GDO-R. It is sequenced for efficient administration, enhanced organization and includes visual stimuli cards.

Gesell, Arnold, MD (1880-1961): Early in the 20th century, Dr. Gesell observed and documented patterns in the way children develop, showing that they all go through similar sequences, though each child moves through these sequences at his/her own rate. He claimed that growth can be thought of as a cyclical spiral, each rotation of the spiral encompassing the time it takes to move through a cycle of six stages. Dr. Gesell’s theory is known as a maturational-developmental theory. It is the foundation to nearly every other theory of human development to follow his.  

Gesell Developmental Observation-Revised (GDO-R): A comprehensive, multidimensional assessment that assists educators and other professionals in understanding the characteristics of child behavior in relation to typical growth patterns between 2½ to 9 years of age. It uses direct observation to evaluate a child’s cognitive, language, motor and social-emotional responses. A child’s natural behavior is assessed against three levels of age appropriate norms (Age Appropriate, Emerging or Concern) and results in a Developmental Age.

Gesell Early Screener (GES): A short screening instrument that can “flag” any child who may benefit from further diagnostic evaluation with a tool like the GDO-R. It can identify if a child may be at risk for developmental or learning delays. It does not, however, assign a Developmental Age as the GDO-R does. Intended for children ages 3 to 6.

GES Examiner’s Manual: A manual ©2011 that contains information about the rationale, theory and development of the GES. It provides specific information about the administration, scoring and interpretation of all GES tasks.


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M

Manipulatives: The individual materials used to administer the different tasks of the GDO-R and GES (i.e., assessment cards, wooden blocks, a small jar with pellets, bean bag).

Mastery: Child completed GDO-R and/or GES task successfully.

Maturational-Developmental Theory: Early in the 20th century, Dr. Arnold Gesell observed and documented patterns in the way children develop, showing that they all go through similar sequences, though each child moves through these sequences at his/her own rate. He claimed that growth can be thought of as a cyclical spiral, each rotation of the spiral encompassing the time it takes to move through a cycle of six stages. Dr. Gesell’s theory is known as a maturational-developmental theory. It is the foundation to nearly every other theory of human development to follow his.

Multi-Dimensional Assessment System: An integrated system of tasks and measures that assesses a child’s developmental, academic, social/emotional and visual/spatial ability derived from multiple sources. Both the GDO-R and the GES are multidimensional assessment systems.


N

National Lecture Staff (NLS): Gesell Institute is represented throughout the United States by our National Lecture Staff, a carefully selected, highly educated and intensively trained group of professionals. They work together to provide a variety of training opportunities across the country. The NLS conduct half and/or full day staff in-services for schools.  Professional development covers a variety of subjects about child development, especially as it relates to the classroom. Many NLS specialize in Parent Information meetings as well. The NLS are solely responsible for the Gesell Developmental Observation – Revised (GDO-R) training.


O

Overall Performance Level: The examiner’s collective impression of Age Appropriate, Emerging, or Concern for the child based on the child’s quantitative and qualitative performance across all GDO-R strands including social/emotional behavior and adaptive skills.

Overt Behavior: Any easily observable behavior expressed physically or verbally, or lack thereof. An essential part of the GDO-R. It plays a significant role in the assessment of young children, revealing information about the child’s developmental level and a reflection of a child’s perception of his/her world.


P

Parent/Guardian Questionnaire (PQ): A survey that collects information about the child’s prenatal and early health history, as well as important social, emotional, and adaptive behavior observed by the family and caregivers in the home. The PQ is an integral component of both the GDO-R and GES.

Performance Level Definition: A qualitative description of children’s capabilities in multiple domains across three performance levels and seven age bands. Used to check and confirm a child’s overall performance level assigned by the Examiner of the GDO-R.

Performance Level Expectation: One of three levels (Solid, 70% of children in each age band successfully completed a task; Qualified, 50-69.9% of children in each age band successfully completed the task; and Not Yet Expected, less than 50% of children in each age band successfully completed the task) that enable the examiner to compare the child’s performance on an individual task to his or her peer group. Included in Gesell’s developmental assessment tools – GDO-R and GES.

Performance Level Rating: One of three levels (Age Appropriate, Emerging, or Concern) used to describe a child’s performance on each GDO-R and GES strand.  

Process: The observable method and approach used by a child to complete a GDO-R task.


Q

Qualified Examiner: An individual who has attended a 3-day workshop in the last 5 years and is trained to administer the Gesell Developmental Observation-Revised (GDO-R).


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S

Social and Emotional Learning: the process through which children and adults acquire and effectively apply the knowledge, attitudes, and skills necessary to understand and manage emotions, set and achieve positive goals, feel and show empathy for others, establish and maintain positive relationships, and make responsible decisions.

Strand: A group of tasks which collectively measures a performance area or domain. GDO-R strands consist of Developmental, Letters/Numbers, Language/Comprehension, Visual/Spatial Discrimination, and Social/Emotional Development.

Strand Score: The average of scaled scores for a set of tasks within a strand. This score corresponds to one of three performance level ratings for each strand and age band. Strand scores are applicable to three GDO-R strands: Letters/Numbers, Language/Comprehension, and Visual/Spatial Discrimination.

Strand Scoring Worksheet: A one page worksheet to convert raw scores from individual GDO-R and GES tasks into scaled scores, and then produce a strand score when averaged within one strand.

Summary Profile Form: Provides a summary of a child’s scores on the GDO-R and GES and is intended to facilitate communication between parents and teachers. It also provides important documentation about the child’s developmental functioning.  

Supplemental Trends: Supplemental information by age about qualitative responses and approaches to some tasks in the GDO which was not derived from the GDO Study, but is the opinion of a team of expert examiners and is based on prior data.


T

Task: A set of GDO-R and GES questions, stimuli, or procedures that elicit a response or set of behaviors that can be measured.

Teacher Questionnaire (TQ): A survey that allows the teacher to record social, emotional and adaptive behavior observed in the classroom. For example, the TQ also documents how, where and with whom the child plays with most often. The TQ is an integral component of both the GDO-R and GES.


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