Mahurin Honors College Capstone Experience/Thesis Projects


Communication Sciences and Disorders

Document Type



The Rapid Assessment of Problem Solving (RAPS) is a clinical assessment of verbal problem solving skills created by Dr. Robert Marshall and colleagues (Marshall, 2003). The assessment, originally developed for adults, is based on the well-known twenty questions game. The clinician administering the assessment chooses a target picture and the participant asks yes or no questions to eliminate incorrect answers and, eventually, identify the target picture. Question asking efficiency, indicated by the number of choices eliminated, is considered to reflect levels of cognitive functioning, specifically problem solving. Recently, the RAPS has been utilized with typically developing children and children with autism (Smith, 2015; Jones, 2018). Based on the results of these studies, two limitations emerged related to picture recognition and integration of information. Picture recognition refers to a child’s ability to correctly identify a picture by name whereas integration of information is the ability to process all items on the picture board at once. This capstone project aims to directly address these limitations by developing a child-focused version of this assessment. It is hoped that creating a children’s version of the RAPS (RAPS-K) will address the limitations found in the original RAPS and, once piloted, set a normative baseline for future research. Additionally, the RAPS-K is intended to provide an accurate tool for iv evaluating problem solving in not only typically developing children, but eventually in children with special needs such as autism spectrum disorder.

Advisor(s) or Committee Chair

Dr. Janice Carter Smith, Dr. Leigh Anne Roden-Carrier, Dr. Chris Keller


Communication Sciences and Disorders | Psychology | Speech Pathology and Audiology