LUI Research

As new research featuring the LUI is published, we will link you to it here.

Research publications on the LUI authored by Daniela O’Neill and colleagues include:

O’Neill, D. K. (2007). The Language Use Inventory: A parent-report measure of pragmatic language development for 18-47-month-old children. Journal of Speech, Language and Hearing Research. 50, 214-228.

Pesco, D., & O'Neill, D. K. (2012). Predicting later language outcomes from the Language Use Inventory. Journal of Speech, Language and Hearing Research, 55, 421-434. Final preprint version prior to publication available at

Research publications by other researchers that use the LUI with typically developing children:

Abbot-Smith, K., Nurmsoo, E., Croll, R. (2015). How children aged 2/6 tailor verbal expressions to interlocutor informational needs. Journal of Child Language, 43, 1277-1291. DOI:

Ronfard, S., Wei, R., & Rowe, M. (2017). Uncovering the social and cognitive skills underlying processing efficacy as measured by the LWL paradigm. Poster presented at the 42nd Annual Boston University Conference on Language Development. Boston, MA.

Research publications by other researchers with clinical populations that feature the LUI:

1. The use of the LUI with children with autism spectrum disorders and with respect to the new DSM-5 Social Communication Disorder

Fujiki, M. & Brinton, B. (2015). Social communication assessment and intervention for children with language impairment. In Hwa-Froelich, D. A. (Ed.). Social Communication Development and Disorders. New York: Psychology Press.
“..the Language Use Inventory (O’Neill, 2007), can provide a useful way of organizing the impressions of stakeholders.” Fujiki & Brinton, 2014, p. 235.

Volmar, F. R., Paul, R. S., Rogers, S. J., & Pelphrey, K. A. (2014) (Eds.). Handbook of Autism and Pervasive Developmental Disorders.(4th Ed.) Vol. 2: Assessment, Interventions and Policy. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley.

Miller, M., Young, G. S., Hutan, T., Johnson, S., Schwichtenberg, A. J., & Ozonoff, S. (2014). Early pragmatic language difficulties in siblings of children with autism: implications for DSM‐5 social communication disorder. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry. E-pub ahead of print. doi:10.1111/jcpp.12342

Swineford, L. B., Thurm, A., Baird, F., Wetherby, A. M., & Swedo, S. (2014). Social (pragmatic) communication disorder: a research review of this new DSM-5 diagnostic category. Journal of Neurodevelopmental Disorders, 6(1), 41. doi: 10.1186/1186-1955-6-41. Open Access full article

Kasari, C., Brady, N., Lord, C., & Tager-Flusberg, H. (2013). Assessing the Minimally Verbal School-Aged Child with Autism Spectrum Disorder. Autism Research, 6(6), 479-493. Published online Oct. 29 2013. doi: 10.1002/aur.1334. Open Access Free PMC Article.

Ferguson, S. (August 2013). Working with families of preschoolers with autism: An examination of a parent-mediated early intervention targeting joint attention. Ph. D. dissertation: University of Camberra, Australia. Open Access PDF.

Stewart, L. B., Townsend, A., Ortega, T., Stewart, A., & Johnson, J. H. (2013). What the beginning speech-language pathologist and educator need to know about autism spectrum disorders. Online Journal of Education Research , 2(4), 57-65. Open Access article.

Paul, R., & Norbury, C. (2011). Language Disorders from Infancy Through Adolescence (4th Ed.). Mosby: St. Louis, MO.

Tager-Flusberg, H., Rogers, S., Cooper, J., Landa, R., Lord, C., Paul, R., Rice, M, Stoel-Gammon, C, Wetherby, A., & Yoder, P. (2009). Defining spoken language benchmarks and selecting measures of expressive language development for young children with autism spectrum disorders. Journal of Speech, Language and Hearing Research , 52(3), 643. (Open Access)

2. The use of the LUI with children with ADHD

Rints, A., McAuley, T., & Nilsen, E. S. (2014). Social communication Is predicted by inhibitory ability and ADHD traits in preschool-aged children: A mediation model. Journal of Attention Disorders. Advance online publication Dec. 4 2014 doi: 10.1177/1087054714558873

3. The use of the LUI with children with Down syndrome

Foster-Cohen, S. & van Bysterveldt, A. K. (2016). Assessing the communication development of children with language delay through parent multi-questionnaire reporting. Speech, Language & Hearing. DOI: 10.1080/2050571X.2015.1108067.

Schutz, Tricia M. (2014). Down syndrome: An investigation into effective assessment and intervention to increase overall communicative abilities. Research Papers. Paper 470. Southern Illinois University Carbondale OpenSIUC. Open Access full PDF.

Research publications regarding translations of the LUI:


Pesco, D. & O’Neill, D. (2016). Assessing Early Language Use by French-Speaking Canadian Children: Introducing the LUI-French. Canadian Journal of Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology, 40(3), 180-217. Open access:

Italian (Italy):

Longobardi, E., Lonigro, A., Laghi, F., & O’Neill, D. K. (Online Jan. 29, 2017). Pragmatic language development in 18- to 47-month-old Italian children: A study with the Language Use Inventory. First Language.

Portuguese (Portugal):

da Silva Guimarães, C., Cruz-Santos, A., & Almeida, L. (2013). Adaptation of the Parent Report Language Use Inventory for 18- to 47-months-old children to European Portuguese: A Pilot Study. Audiology – Communication Research, 18(4).

The LUI’s Psychometric Properties

The Language Use Inventory (LUI) is a research-based, empirically-validated language assessment toold that is the product of over 10 years of research by Dr. Daniela O’Neill, professor of developmental psychology at the University of Waterloo, Canada. Its development was funded by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research. The questions on the Language Use Inventory have undergone extensive testing with thouands of parents to ensure that they capture important aspects of child language development.

In addition to the research cited below, for readers wishing more detailed information, we have made openly available the full texts (pdf) of Chapter 5 (Development of the LUI and Psychometrics) and Chapter 6 (Standardization and Norms Development) from the LUI Manual (O'Neill, 2009) which provide a detailed history of the development and standardization of the LUI.

Norm-referenced: The LUI has undergone standardization (norming) on a Canadian sample of over 3500 children from over 550 communities across Canada and included stratification on variables of family income, visible minority, lone parent status, level of parents’ schooling, and exposure to languages other than English based on Statistics Canada census data.

Sensitivity and Specificity: Research has shown that children’s scores on the Language Use Inventory distinguish, with sensitivity and specificity values of 96%, children whose language is developing typically from those who language is significantly delayed or impaired.

Predictive Validity: Research has also documented that children’s scores on the Language Use Inventory are significantly predictive of their later language outcomes at age 5 to 6 years.

Internal Reliability and Discriminative Validity: The LUI's development and studies of its internal reliability and discriminative validity are described in O'Neill (2007, Journal of Speech, Language and Hearing Research).

The Language Use Inventory is used by researchers and speech-language professionals working in universities, clinics, hospitals, schools and private practice throughout North America, as well as in the United Kingdom, Ireland, Australia, and New Zealand. The work of these researchers continues to inform the psychometric properties of the LUI and new work appearing is highlighted in LUI Publications.

Translations are currently underway by researchers in 15 countries as summarized in the Table below. In addition, for researchers, digital versions of the LUI for REDCap and Qualtrics have been developed under license (please contact Daniela directly at regarding digital versions).

For some of the translations of the LUI into other languages, further materials (e.g., a fully completed translation of the LUI and guidelines or a manual for use based on completed studies) are available for use by speech-language professionals and researchers free of charge. Where this is the case, a separate web page is being created for each language to provide professionals and researchers with the most up-to-date information and materials concerning these translations. The content of these pages is provided and updated by the primary researchers involved, whose contact information is provided for further correspondence if desired.

At present further materials are available for the following translations of the LUI:

LUI - Français (Canada) / LUI - French (Canada)

LUI - Italiano (Italia) / LUI - Italian (Italy)

LUI - Norsk (Norge) / LUI - Norwegian (Norway)

LUI - Polski (Polska) / LUI - Polish (Poland)

LUI - Português (Portugal) / LUI - Portuguese (Portugal)

If you are a speech-language professional and have any further questions or feedback concerning these translations, please feel free to contact the primary investigators listed or Daniela O’Neill directly at We welcome hearing from you as work continues on developing translations of the LUI.

If you are a researcher interested in conducting a translation of the LUI, we look forward to hearing from you! Translation of language measures is an extensive multi-year-long, expensive undertaking, that is more aptly described as an adaptation, rather than a straightforward translation, as specific items may not be directly translatable and may require in-depth and specialized knowledge, and pilot testing, to ensure a similar level of item difficulty and developmental emergence.

We have prepared a set of guidelines to ensure that these translations retain the psychometric properties of the original LUI as well as its “look and feel.” These guidelines also inform potential authors of translations as to the conditions for obtaining a (free) license for the purposes of translation and adaptation of the LUI into another language and/or country from the publisher of the LUI, Knowledge In Development, Inc. No adaptations, translations, modifications, or special versions may be made without permission, in writing, from Knowledge in Development Inc.

Researchers interested in conducting translations/adaptations to other languages may contact Daniela O'Neill directly at to find out more about the required procedures.

The Table below lists all translations currently taking place and interested researchers are invited to contact Daniela O’Neill or the researchers involved to find out more! For a summary of published work regarding all these translations see

Primary Investigator(s) and Institution Language of Translation of the Language Use Inventory Date of Issue of Licence from Knowledge in Development, Inc.
Dr. Aseel Alkadhi
City University
School of Health Sciences
London, UK & King Saud University
Rehabilitation Sciences Department,
College of Applied Medical Sciences
Arabic June 23, 2011
Dr. Marta Bialecka-Pikul,
Institute of Psychology
Jagiellonian University
Krakow, Poland
Polish June 21, 2011
Dr. Ewa Haman
Faculty of Psychology
University of Warsaw
Warsaw, Poland
Polish July 22, 2011
Dr. Emiddia Longobardi
Dept. of Dynamic and Clinical Psychology
University of Rome Sapienza
Rome, Italy
Italian July 19, 2011
Dr. Cristiana Guimarães & Dr. Anabela Cruz-Santos
Institute of Education
University of Minho
Braga, Portugal
Portuguese (Portugal) Oct. 5, 2011
Dr. Martina Ozbič, Dr. Damjana Kogovšek,
& Dr. Jerneja Novšak Brce

Pedagoška fakulteta
Univerze v Ljubljani (Faculty of
education – University of Ljubljana)
Oddelek za specialno in rehabilitacijsko pedagogiko
(Department of Special Education)
Ljubljana, Slovenija

& Ms. Lucija Benedičič
Slovenian Nov. 16, 2011 & Feb. 12, 2016 (with further co-PI Ms. Lucija Benedičič)
Dr. Diane Pesco
Dept. of Education
Concordia University,
Montreal, Canada

Dr. Daniela O’Neill,
Dept. of Psychology
University of Waterloo
Waterloo, Canada
French April 2, 2012
Dr. Wenche Andersen Helland
Department of Biological and Medical Psycology
University of Bergen
Bergen, Norway‎
Norwegian October 16, 2014
Dr. Mahbubeh Nakhshab
Number 83/1, Khashayar Blind Alley,
Mohammadieh Alley
Khaghani Street
Isfahan, Iran

Dr Fariba Yadegari
Department of Speech and Language Pathology
University of Social Welfare and Rehabilitation Sciences
Tehran, Iran.

Dr Yalda Kazemi
Speech Therapy Department, School of Rehabilitation
Isfahan University of Medical Sciences
Isfahan, Iran.
Persian (Iran) March 18, 2016
Dr. Beatriz Servilha Brocchi & Dr. Jacy Perissinoto
Departamento de Fonoaudiologia
Universidade Federal de São Paulo
São Paulo, Brazil
Portuguese (Brazil) March 22, 2016
Dr. Wong Tze Peng
School of Educational Studies
Universiti Sains Malaysia
Penang, Malaysia

Dr. Low Hui Min
School of Educational Studies Universiti Sains Malaysia Minden Penang, Malaysia
Malay (Malaysia) April 24, 2017
Dr. İlknur Maviş & Dr. Eda İyigün
Faculty of Health Sciences
Dept. of Speech and Language Therapy
Eskişehir, Turkey
Turkish (Turkey) Jan. 28 2018
Dr. Inmaculada Baixauli Fortea
Departamento de Ciencias de la Ocupación, Logopeida, Psicología evolutiva y de la educación
Universidad Católica de Valencia "San Vicente Mártir"
46008 Valencia, Spain

Dr. Carmen Moret Tatay
Departamento de Neuropsicobiología, Metodología, Psicología Básica y Social
Universidad Católica de Valencia "San Vicente Mártir"
46008 Valencia, Spain

Nerea Gascón Herranz
Unidad de autismo
Camí del pouet s/n
4601 Valencia, Spain
Spanish (Spain) November 11, 2016 (Sole-PI) & July 18, 2018 (with Co-PIs)
Dr. Maria Rosenberg
Dept. of Language Studies
Umeá University
SE-901 87 Umeá, Sweden
Swedish April 19, 2019
Dr. Maja Cepanec
Dept. of Speech and Language Pathology Faculty of Education and Rehabilitation Sciences
Borongajska cesta 831
10000 Zagreb, Croatia

Nadina Bozie
Split, Croatia

Zorana Dedic, SLP
Dubrovnik, Croatia

Marta Jovanovic, SLP
Mlini, Croatia
Croatian July 3, 2019
Dr. Daniel Holzinger
Director of the Centre for Communication and Language Institute of Neurology of Language and Senses, Konventhospital Barmherzige Brüder
Seilerstätte 2,
4020 Linz, Austria

Magdalena Dall, Research Coordinator

& Ruth Kapplmüller & Monika Bernauer, Researchers

Research Institute for Developmental Medicine, Johannes Kepler University, LinzBischofstraße 11,
4020 Linz, Austria
German (Austria) Sept. 26, 2019

We welcome new research with the LUI! Daniela O’Neill is happy to answer research-related questions and can be contacted at

Researchers studying children with siblings with autism, prematurity, low vision, deafness or hearing difficulties, attention deficit disorder, or at high-risk are currently using the LUI in their work.

Students who wish to use the LUI in their research, but who are financially constrained, should contact Daniela directly.