Normed for ages 6:0 to 17:11. Percentile ranks are also provided for each
half of each grade from the second half of kindergarten through the second half
of grade 12.
The Spelling subtest is described on pages 267 to 27 in the DAS
Administration and Scoring Manual and discussed on pages 77-78 in the DAS
Introductory and Technical Handbook. Spelling requires the child to write
words that are dictated by the examiner. The 70-item test is divided into ten
7-item blocks. Like the Basic Number Skills subtest, Spelling utilizes a Basal
and Ceiling format for testing (Basal: 5 or fewer passes within a 7-item set;
Ceiling: 2 or fewer passes within the 7-item set). To establish the basal and
ceiling, examiners administer the first two words in the specified starting
block (determined by the child's age). If the child passes both items, the
examiner skips to the next block and continues administering the first two items
until the child fails one or both items. At that point, the examiner would
administer all the items in the previous block. If the child fails both items on
the first attempted block, move back to the preceding block and administer the
first two items. Continue to move back until the child passes the first two
items in the block and then administer all the remaining items in that block.
Even though Basal and Ceiling rules are used to select items, ability scores
are based only on the number of correct responses within a continuous set of
completed blocks. The examiner does not give credit for items below the basal.
When calculating raw score, ignore all scored items below the basal or above the
ceiling. The DAS Administration and Scoring Manual provides excellent
descriptions of performance analysis for this test. Again, the examiner must
seek another test to measure aspects of written expression other than spelling.