Date Available


Year of Publication


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Document Type

Master's Thesis


Health Sciences


Communication Sciences & Disorders

First Advisor

Dr. Jane O’Regan Kleinert


The purpose of this pilot investigation was to assess the inter-rater reliability of an expert-validated pediatric feeding assessment, designed for clinician use with children who have severe disabilities. The tool would ideally allow for standardization of the clinical mealtime assessment process.

A comprehensive review of available feeding instruments revealed that there is a need for an assessment tool for children with motor and developmentally based feeding problems.In response to this need, a new clinician administered instrument called the Mealtime Assessment Tool for Children (MATCH) was developed in order to guide the assessment of a child during a clinical meal.

The items on the MATCH were selected based on expert validation of normal and abnormal feeding patterns that remain constant across the feeding assessments found in the literature. The tool includes a rating scale that allows for gradation of the severity of the problem. Child participants were taped while eating, and clips were rated by four SLPs using the MATCH. The resulting data was analyzed quantitatively, and it was found that across items there was a strong percentage agreement.

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)