Q. What is QUILS™?

A. QUILS™, the Quick Interactive Language Screener™, is a one-of-a-kind, game-like screening tool that helps you evaluate whether children are making language progress appropriate for their age group. In just 15–20 minutes, children answer 48 items that screen three key areas: syntax, vocabulary, and process. It’s fast, easy, and convenient for busy teachers—and the screener is so much fun, kids might even ask to do it again.

Q. Who developed QUILS?

A. QUILS was developed by a group of authors:

Quick Interactive Language Screener™ (QUILS™)
Roberta Michnick Golinkoff, Ph.D., Jill de Villiers, Ph.D., Kathy Hirsh-Pasek, Ph.D., Aquiles Iglesias, Ph.D., and Mary Sweig Wilson, Ph.D.

User’s Manual for the Quick Interactive Language Screener™ (QUILS™)
Roberta Michnick Golinkoff, Ph.D., Jill de Villiers, Ph.D., Kathy Hirsh-Pasek, Ph.D., Aquiles Iglesias, Ph.D., and Mary Sweig Wilson, Ph.D with Giovanna Morini, Ph.D., and Natalie G. Brezack.

Q. What developmental areas does QUILS address?

A. QUILS screens three key areas:

  • Vocabulary: What words do children already know? Do students know the words they hear on the QUILS?
  • Syntax: What do children understand about how words go together in sentences? For example, how well do children understand questions that begin with where, when, and how?
  • Process: How good are children at learning new words and grammar structures? How good are students at learning language items when they are new?

Q. How often can children be screened with QUILS?

A. All students 3 years through 5 years, 11 months of age can be screened with QUILS. The developers recommend screening once a year until children are 6 years old, but programs may use their discretion to rescreen on a schedule that suits their planning and/or the circumstances for individual students.

Q. Who completes the screener?

A. A child completes the screener with minimal supervision from a teacher, paraprofessional, classroom aide, parent, or classroom volunteer.

Q. Is QUILS easy to use?

A. Yes! No special training is required to supervise the screening. The tablet or touchscreen computer actually does all the “work” of administering the screener and recording the child’s answers, so any responsible adult can supervise QUILS.

Q. How long does it take to administer QUILS?

A. The screener takes 15–20 minutes for students to complete. Scoring is automatically calculated and reports are ready for download immediately.

Q. In what settings can QUILS be completed?

A. QUILS can be completed entirely online, so the screener can be done in any early childhood setting with internet access.

Q. Who uses the results of QUILS?

A. Anyone who works with young children can play a key role in the early identification of language delays. Examples of individuals who might use QUILS include:

  • Early childhood educators and administrators
  • Reading specialists
  • Literacy coaches
  • Speech-language pathologists
  • Psychologists

Q. How does QUILS involve parents?

A. Parents can play an important role in encouraging language development in any areas where their child can benefit from additional attention. Teachers review the QUILS results with parents and go over the areas in which children need extra support. Though QUILS doesn’t provide interventions directly linked to the results of the screener, there are some resources and suggested activities for parents to use with their child.

Q. Who is Po?

A. Po the Porcupine is your friendly, helpful (and adorable!) guide to the world of QUILS. Po appears throughout the User’s Manual to highlight key information and on the QUILS website to walk you through each page of the site.

Q. Can I share my QUILS password with other professionals?

A. Use of QUILS is licensed to the account holder who purchases the original access. But the account holder can share the account with other teachers, administrators, and educators at his or her program.

Q. Is there a limit to the number of users for one QUILS account?

A. No. Any number of teachers, administrators, or educators can use the account, as long as the account is for a single physical site. It’s important to note, though, that the login can only be used on one device at a time.

Q. How do I log in to my QUILS account?

A. From this website click the “Login” button on the left side of the website. This will take you to the QUILS Home page; the login fields are on the right side of the screen.

Q. How do I log out of my QUILS account?

A. The logout button is located on the top right corner of the QUILS website on every page.

Q. How do I change my password?

A. First, click on the Account button in the top right corner. Then click “Edit” and fields will be displayed for you to update your password.

Q. How do I change my email address associated with my account?

A. Click on the Account button in the top right corner. Click “Edit” and update your email in the correct field.

Q. What is a Student Record?

A. A Student Record contains all the information about a student that has been entered into QUILS, including their demographic information and screening data.

Q. Am I required to input a student ID?

A. Yes, you’ll assign a unique student ID to each child. This allows you the option to generate the reports as “blinded”—without the student’s name—so that you can mask student identity when you share data if needed.

Q. Who can view, modify, or add a Student Record to QUILS?

A. You can share your login with other educators and administrators at your school, but everyone has to share one login. Anyone with that login can view, modify, add, or archive Student Records.

Q. How can I see who has edited or modified student data?

A. The Home page of your account will display the most recently screened students. Because there’s only one login for the account, the QUILS website can’t track which person used the login to supervise screenings or edit the information in a Student Record.

Q. What do I do if I can’t find the QUILS Student Record for a student I’m working with?

A. If you can’t find a Student Record in the active list, it’s possible that the student was archived. You can view the entire archived list of students by clicking on the “View Archived Students” button on the Students page.

Q. A student I screened is moving to another county; can I transfer his or her records?

A. Not at this time. You can archive the student within your own QUILS account, but you can’t share student information across multiple QUILS accounts within the QUILS website. You could generate and print reports to provide information on that student to another program, provided you are observing your program’s policies about data sharing.

Q. What do I do if I notice incorrect demographic information in a Student Record?

A. First, confirm the correct information with your school or program. Then edit the demographic information by selecting the appropriate Student Record and then clicking “Edit.”

Q. What’s the difference between “active” and “archived” Student Records?

A. Active Student Records are “live” and can be edited by any user who has access rights. Screening can only be performed within an active Student Record. Archived Student Records are records that aren’t “live” for any reason (e.g., the student has moved and is no longer served by your program). Archived Student Records can be viewed but may not be modified.

Q. Do you have a QUILS database for analysis of statewide results?

A. Not at this time.

Q. Can I compare the results at my school to other programs using QUILS?

A. You can’t currently link two or more QUILS accounts in order to compare results. You can export any student’s raw data out of your QUILS account and compare any other data you have access to outside of the system.

Q. Will the student data I enter into QUILS be used for any other purposes?

A. In order to improve QUILS, Brookes Publishing Co. and the QUILS developers may use student data for research purposes, but the only personal information about a student that will be shared for these purposes is the child’s age at the time of screening. All other personally identifying information about individual students, users, and programs will be stripped from the data files. For a detailed explanation, please read our Privacy Policy. If you do not want any information in your account used by the developers for research, you may contact Brookes Publishing and your request will be honored.

Q. How do I purchase QUILS?

A. You can purchase QUILS and the QUILS User’s Manual through Brookes Publishing. You can buy online or call customer service at 1-800-638-3775 or 1-410-337-9580 (outside the U.S. and Canada).

Q. Once I purchase QUILS, how quickly can I log into my account and start screening?

A. Once you purchase access to QUILS, your login information will be sent via email within 2 business days.

Q. Do I need to purchase the QUILS User’s Manual with my QUILS access?

A. A print copy of the QUILS User’s Manual is available for purchase through Brookes Publishing, but it’s not essential that you purchase one. You can read the whole manual on the QUILS website, and manual content is also fully integrated within the online tool to guide your use of QUILS.

Q. How do you score QUILS?

A. You don’t! The tool automatically scores the student’s results, which you can access through any of the reports offered (see below). You can view available reports on the Reports page, which can be accessed at any time from the top navigation bar.

Q. What reports are available through the QUILS?

A. QUILS creates a variety of reports based on your desired criteria. There are three types of reports:

  • Student Reports: Overview of a student’s individual screening, including overall performance, area scores, and a brief recommendation
  • Parent Report: Overview to facilitate a conversation with parents about their child’s performance
  • Group Reports: Overview of multiple students based on selected criteria, allowing an at-a-glance view of the screening results or status information

Q. Can I use QUILS reports as a method of progress monitoring?

A. No, QUILS is not appropriate for progress monitoring on a weekly or monthly basis. The developers advise using QUILS to identify changes in language progress on an annual basis.

Q. Will students see their results after the screening is done?

A. No. After the screener is complete, the child can be excused. The supervising adult should then exit the screener as instructed by the onscreen text. This will bring the user back into the Student Record. From there, the adult can choose to view a report for the screening or navigate to a different Student Record to start a new screening.

Q. Can I email reports from QUILS to a colleague or a parent?

A. The QUILS reports may be downloaded locally as PDFs. Before emailing a report, be sure you are familiar with your school’s or program’s policies regarding sharing student information and the ways in which that information can be transmitted. Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) and other federal, state, or local regulations could be applicable, and you are responsible for knowing those policies and how to comply.

Q. How does QUILS calculate a referral for evaluation?

A. The criteria for recommendation are as follows:

  • Students with an overall percentile rank below 25 should be referred for follow-up evaluation.
  • Students with a percentile rank below 25 in the Process area (regardless of their score in the Vocabulary and Syntax areas) should be referred for follow-up evaluation.
  • Students with percentile ranks below 25 in both the Vocabulary and the Syntax areas (regardless of their score in the Process area) should be referred for follow-up evaluation.

Q. Is there a monitoring zone available in QUILS?

A. Not yet. In future iterations of QUILS, the developers hope to incorporate a monitoring zone that identifies students close to the cutoff score.

Q. Are the cutoff scores the same for each age group?

A. No. Age norms are used to score the administration and all scores are relative to the child’s age group. There are three age groups: 3-year-olds, 4-year-olds, and 5-year-olds.

Q. I would like to share the data I’ve collected with QUILS with the authors, to help with research and development of future editions. How do I do that?

A. Hundreds of children have completed QUILS, providing valuable feedback to the tool’s developers. The developers will be happy to receive blind data to help further their research and the development of future editions. If your program has collected data on QUILS and would like to share it, email the Brookes Publishing Subsidiary Rights Department. Please include your data and complete contact information, which will be shared only with the authors and not used by Brookes Publishing or any other party.

Q. What research supports QUILS?

A. Psychometric studies have established the reliability and validity of QUILS and ensured that all items are culturally nonbiased. Complete details can be found in the technical report in the QUILS User’s Manual. See Chapter 9.

Q. Can I use screenshots of the QUILS items in something else I am creating?

A. You’ll need written permission from Brookes before adapting, translating, reformatting, reprinting, or reproducing any part of the QUILS screener, the User’s Manual, and any related materials. To apply for permission, please complete a Permission Request Form.

Q. How do I get more information about QUILS usage, rights, permissions, and translations?

A. Please email your inquiry to Brookes Publishing’s Subsidiary Rights Department. Emails are answered as quickly as possible. Due to the volume of inquiries received, please note that it may be approximately 4-8 weeks before your inquiry is handled.

Q. Is QUILS trademarked?

Yes. Quick Interactive Language Screener™, QUILS™, and the QUILS™ logo are trademarks of Paul H. Brookes Publishing Co., Inc.

Q. I’m not sure my student is proficient in English. Can I still screen this child with QUILS?

A. Before you screen, use the Language Questionnaire to determine if a student is sufficiently proficient in English to be screened with QUILS.

Q. I think my student’s English is good enough. Can’t I just screen anyway?

A. The QUILS was normed using a monolingual population, so for the cutoff scores to be relevant, the student you’re screening must be proficient in English (as determined by the Language Questionnaire). Students who aren’t proficient in English may not fully understand the QUILS items, and they may be mistakenly referred for follow-up evaluation even though they don’t have a potential language delay.

Q. I work with children who don’t speak and/or read English. Can I translate the item questions into the student’s language?

A. No, translating the individual items is not permitted. That’s because translating the item changes the item’s characteristics, which can alter its difficulty. Because the data were normed against the items in their present form, translating them would invalidate using those norms for comparison.

Q. Is QUILS available in other languages?

A. QUILS: ES (an English–Spanish bilingual version) is currently under development. Other languages may be developed in the future. For the latest information on QUILS, please sign up for email updates.

Q. What kind of computer do I need in order to use QUILS?

A. QUILS can be administered on any iPad, Android tablet, laptop, or desktop with touchscreen technology and internet access.

Q. Do I need to use a touchscreen in order to screen students with the QUILS?

A. No, it’s not required, but we highly recommend it. The QUILS was normed on a sample using touchscreen devices, so touchscreen devices are the preferred method of delivery. Part of the ease and appeal of the QUILS is that many students are familiar with touchscreens from very young ages. Because students are used to playing games on touchscreen devices, the QUILS delivery format is easy for them to grasp and may seem like just another fun game. If a touchscreen device is not available, we do provide information in the User’s Manual about how to complete the screener with a mouse and standard monitor.

Q. May I use a smartphone to administer QUILS?

A. Even though the QUILS website may be accessible from your phone, the screen is too small for reliable administration of QUILS. The developers advise against attempting to screen from a device this small.

Q. How fast does my internet need to be to run the QUILS?

A. We advise using an internet connection with 10–15MB/s.

Q. Can I restore information I delete by mistake?

A. QUILS is not able to restore data you delete by mistake as you input or edit data or text onscreen. If you delete an in-progress screening, we recommend that you re-screen the student as soon as possible. If you delete information from within the Student Record, you will need to manually re-enter the information. In more complex situations, please contact Technical Support through the Help page of the QUILS website.

Q. Do I need to manually save screening data?

A. No. The tool automatically saves which question the student is on as he or she progresses through the screener. After the screener is complete, the data are automatically saved.

Q. How often will my data be backed up?

A. Your data will be backed up daily on the system’s server.

Q. How do I know my data are protected in the QUILS system?

A. The server is firewall protected and is monitored 24/7. The server security and system logs are reviewed regularly, and the software is maintained with the latest security updates.

Q. Will my personal firewall software interfere with my use of QUILS?

A. There are no unusual firewall features or setting requirements for QUILS that would cause a firewall to interfere with your access. If you believe software installed on your computer is preventing you from accessing the website, we suggest including the URL “www.quilscreener.com” as an exception to any pop-up blocking rules the software allows you to set. If you experience a problem using QUILS, consult the documentation of your firewall software for the correct settings.