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Cooper Screening of Information Processing
Directions for Administration and Scoring
The following are the directions for the administration and scoring of the shortened version of the Cooper Screening of Information Processing (C-SIP). This screening for learning disabilities was developed by Richard Cooper, Ph.D., Director of the Center for Alternative Learning. It is an instrument designed to sample a persons basic academic skills to determine if the person should be referred for testing to formally identify a learning disability. In the following directions the screen is referred to as the C-SIP.
·The C-SIP should be administered in an environment that is quiet and private.
·The C-SIP should be conducted like an interview rather than a test.
·When a person does not understand the question, give examples or ask the question in another way.
·If the person becomes frustrated by a task, stop the task and mark the response appropriately. For example if the person is struggling to complete the alphabet, allow the person to figure it out for a couple of minutes and then ask if it is difficult to remember the order of the letters. If the person responses in the affirmative or continues to be frustrated, move to the next task and mark that the alphabet is incomplete.
·If the person answers a question one way but evidences the opposite, use the behavior rather that the persons response. For example, if the person states that he/she does not have a problem with spelling but evidences spelling problems when completing the writing sample, mark the person as having a problem with spelling. Or if the person states that he/she does not need to count when doing math but counts when you ask a number fact, mark the question about counting as an affirmative.
The C-SIP is divided into a number of different sections.
The Personal Background information can be completed ahead of time from information that the person has provided on other forms or at the time of the administration of the C-SIP.
Ask the three questions in the Educational History section and record the responses.
If the person does not know if he or she was in special classes or tested for learning problems, give some examples:
1) classes for students who have reading or math problems
2) a school for students who were not successful in regular school
3) given special tests to determine why the person was not doing well in school.
There are three questions in the Auditory section of the C-SIP. Ask the first two questions.
Individuals who listen to more than one conversation at a time usually recognize themselves when this question is asked. If the person does not understand the question, ask the person if he/she would listen to others when talking to you.
Many people know that they do not hear words correctly because friends and family members have told them so; however some are not aware of this difficulty. It is one of the behaviors that the administrator of the C-SIP may observe. If the administrator asks a questions and the person is confused because he/she heard a different word, mark the question as an affirmative.
Then ask the person to rhyme the three words. If the person has any difficulty rhyming any of the words mark the answer to the third question as a yes.
Ask if the person confuses his or her right or left. If the person responds in the negative, ask if the person needs a clue such as which hand the person writes with, which side of the body is stronger, wears jewelry on one side etc. If the person needs such a clue mark the question as a yes.
Ask the other questions and mark the responses.
Ask the three questions about organization and mark the affirmative responses.
The questions about writing are to determine if the person uses writing to communicate. Ask the two questions and mark the responses.
Turn to the Handwriting Sample page in the C-SIP and ask the person to:
Print your full name.
Write your full name in cursive, script, sign your name.
Write a sentence about why you are here.
If not able to write that, can you write a sentence about anything.
(If the person is not able to write anything, move to the next item.)
Write or print the alphabet.
Write the numbers 1 to 20.
Draw a picture.
After the person has finished, review the handwriting sample and answer the questions:
Is the persons handwriting slanted up or down the page?
There are no lines on the handwriting sample page to guide a persons handwriting. If the handwriting slants either up or down more than 1½ inch or 4 cm mark yes.
Is the persons handwriting difficult to read?
Handwriting is difficult to read if the letters are poorly formed or if the space between words and letters is too large(more that the size of two letters) or too small (smaller than a letter).
Are the letters oversized?
Handwriting which is 1 inch (2.5 cm) is considered to be oversized.
Is the alphabet incomplete or out of order?
Does the person mix capital and small letters?
Are there any reversals?
Many letters cannot be reversed, such as I and O but the B, D, J and Z can be reversed. If the person reverses a letter but fixes it, still mark it as a "yes".
Does the sentence have any errors?
If the person was unable to write anything mark the "yes". If the person had misspelled words, missing words or if the sentence was incomplete, mark the "Yes"
Ask the first questions about counting.
If the person responds that he/she counts to complete calculations, mark yes.
Next ask the addition, subtraction and multiplication problems.
If the person does not answer quickly or gives the wrong answer, mark the response as a yes.
There are five math terms to be defined. Ask the person to define or explain what each of the terms mean. Below are some examples of correct and incorrect responses. These are not the only possible responses. Mark "C" for correct if the person defines the word correctly. Mark "S" is the person is able to use the word correctly in a sentence. Mark "I" if the person uses the same word to define the word or does not know the meaning of the word.
Correct responses Incorrect responses
Equal Same Answer, Sum
Average Middle, Leveling Add up and divide,
Unit One, Whole A Number
Variable Something that changes A Number, a Letter
Compound Interest Interest paid on interest Money the bank pays
Ask the first question and mark the response. Next give the person a copy of the Reading List and ask the person to read the words. Mark the words the person either cannot read or reads incorrectly.
After the person has completed reading the progressive reading list, review the mistakes and answer the other questions.
If the person evidenced the ability to decode words phonically or figured them out by pronouncing them a number of times, the person has phonic and decoding skills. However, if the person tries to use phonic or decoding skills but most often is unable to identify the word, mark the person as having difficulty.
Examples of a person substituting words would be dent for bent; match for catch; press for dress; office for official.
If the person is unable to read half of the words (25) of the progressive reading, mark the questions in this section as "yes"
If the person can read more than 25 words from the list, ask the three questions about reading comprehension and mark the responses.
Ask the person to define the words. Below are some examples of correct and incorrect responses. These are not the only possible responses. Mark "C" for correct if the person defines the word correctly. Mark "S" is the person is able to use the word correctly in a sentence. Mark "I" if the person uses the same word to define the word or does not know the meaning of the word.
Correct responses Incorrect responses
LAKE A body of water, pond Ocean, river
REVERSE backwards, other way change direction
DEVELOP grow, process film film, housing project
CAUTION careful, danger cautious
NECESSARY important, must, need to necessarily
SECTION part, piece seat item unit
MOTIVE reason, why cause, motivation
ARTIFICIAL fake, man-made, not real fossil, tool
PHILOSOPHY ones idea, study of ideas subject in school, life style
INNOVATION something new, invention invitation
PRECISE exact, definite neat, small
THEORY thought, idea, opinion fact, truth
DILEMMA problem, choice idea
ANTHROPOLOGY study of man/culture study of insects, bones, fossils
COLLECTIVE gathered together person who collects, collecting
Scoring The C-SIP
Add up the number of positive (yes) responses and enter them in the total at the end of each section. Copy these total numbers onto the scoring page. Next, enter the persons age and the number of years that the person has attended school. Complete the calculation at the bottom of the scoring page. If the person has a score of 75 or larger, he or she probably has a learning disability and should be referred for further testing.