Clinical Evaluation of Language Fundamentals (CELF)

The Clinical Evaluation of Language Fundamentals (CELF) is an instrument for identifying and diagnosing disorders in language performance. The most recent version of the instrument is the fourth edition, CELF-4. This edition is structured around four levels of assessment: language disorder, nature of disorder, behaviors of the disorder, and how the disorder effects classroom performance.

There are four Core tests to determine the deficit; additional sub-tests determine strengths and weaknesses, and supplemental sub-tests for clinical skills. The Observational Rating Scale and Pragmatics Profile allow for descriptive measures of language performance at school and at home.


Eleanor Semel, Elisabeth H. Wig, and Wayne Secord.

Reliability and Validity

The test-retest reliability average ranged from .70 to .90 for each subscale. The mean internal consistency had an alpha score of .69 to .91. The CELF showed high correlation rating with similar instruments, but low scores particularly with LLD samples. Data provided based on inter-correlational studies, factor analytic studies and response processes.

Where to Purchase

Pearson Assessments

Administration, Analysis and Reporting

Statistics Solutions consists of a team of professional methodologists and statisticians that can assist the student or professional researcher in administering the survey instrument, collecting the data, conducting the analyses and explaining the results.

For additional information on these services, click here.


Davis, A. P., Sanger, D. D., & Morris–Frieche, M. (1990). Language skills of delinquent and non-delinquent adolescent males. Journal of Communication Disorders, 24, 251-266.

Semel, E., Wiig, E., & Secord, W. (2003). Clinical evaluation of language fundamentals-4th edition. San Antonio, TX: The Psychological Corporation.

Semel, E., Wiig, E. H., & Secord, W. A. (2004). Clinical evaluation of language fundamentals, fourth edition—Screening test (CELF-4 screening test). Toronto, Canada: The Psychological Corporation/A Harcourt Assessment Company.

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