Kit (Manual, 25 Record Forms, Kit Items)
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Early Sociocognitive Battery (ESB)

Penny Roy, Shula Chiat, Jennifer Warwick

Paper and Pencil
Paper and Pencil
Kit (Manual, 25 Record Forms, Kit Items)
product number: 5560001
Excluding VAT
product number: 5560002
Excluding VAT
Record Forms (pack of 25)
product number: 5560004
Excluding VAT
Kit (Manual, 25 Record Forms, Kit Items)


August 2023: BPS registered test

The Early Sociocognitive Battery (ESB) is an innovative assessment for preschool children that is predictive of later language and social communication difficulties including autism spectrum disorder (ASD).

The ESB can be used by speech and language therapists, clinical and educational psychologists, and paediatricians. It is also available for use by early years' professionals who have:

  • Certified training and experience in a relevant discipline.
  • Membership of a professional organisation appropriate to the focus of the test.
  • Evidence of competence in the use of psychological tests.

Completion of the ESB training programme is optional, though highly recommended for all ESB users. Find information and register here.

Find extra resources on the ESB, including introductory videos by the authors, the BPS test review and a white paper with case studies here.

Download the flyer here.

Product Description

The ESB a primarily non-verbal clinical assessment tool suitable for use with children aged 2-5 years and from diverse language backgrounds. It is a battery of three subtests assessing sociocognitive skills known to be associated with language development and impaired in children with social communication difficulties and ASD. The subtests measure social responsiveness, joint attention and symbolic comprehension to identify deficits in key sociocognitive skills and help early years professionals target their intervention strategies appropriately.

The ESB builds on and supports clinical observations by providing a theoretically-driven, evidence-based measure that is:

  • Systematic: evaluating a representative range of sociocognitive responses elicited through carefully selected and well-specified activities.
  • Standardised: enabling comparison of a child's responses with those typical for their age based on a representative sample of over 400 preschool children.
  • Informative: revealing children's skills and needs according to evidence of relations between performance on the ESB and their development of language and social communication.
  • Psychometrically robust: shown to be reliable and valid.


The ESB is a portable assessment in an easy-to-carry case containing more than 60 toys and objects designed to engage young children.

The assessment is quick, taking 15 minutes or less to complete, and comprises three subtests outlined below:

  • Social Responsiveness: the assessor acts out a sequence of scenarios in which they express six feelings, such as hurt and surprise, and children are scored for looks to the assessor's face.
  • Joint Attention: the child is shown a set of six plastic eggs and opens these to reveal an object inside each; the assessor then looks and/or points at the corresponding object placed in the room earlier. The child is scored for alternating gaze between the assessor and object and for following the assessor's gaze or pointing gesture.
  • Symbolic Comprehension: the assessor presents the child with six gestures, then six miniature objects and six uses of pretend objects, and asks the child to choose one out of six objects that match (is best for) each demonstrated gesture, miniature or pretend object. The child is scored on correct matches.


A virtual training course is available through City, University of London. While not compulsory, completion of this self-directed learning course will help qualified practitioners to incorporate the ESB into their practice.

The course comprises five modules that provide an understanding of the rationale and evidence behind the ESB; its development from a research tool to a standardised and psychometrically robust clinical assessment, administration, scoring and interpretation of the tasks that make up the ESB, and implications for clinical diagnosis and intervention. Lively visual presentation of information is interspersed with short quizzes to support learning, videos of children participating in the ESB to illustrate administration and practice scoring, and case studies to demonstrate application in practice.

Please note that virtual training is not tutor-led and requires self-directed study. For more information on the training course, please contact the training team at City.


15 minutes or less


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