It’s all very well trying to raise awareness, but what actually is DLD?


Developmental language disorder affects a person’s ability to understand and use spoken language. Like other learning differences, it does not go away, but, with support, it is possible to overcome many of the challenges that can be posed by DLD. It can co-occur with other developmental conditions or present in isolation. Although unsupported DLD can have a significant impact on academic results, it is not a indication of low intelligence and can occur across intellectual abilities.

Most teachers will be familiar at least with the terminology relating to ADHD, autism, dyslexia, DCD/dyspraxia, dyscalculia and dysgraphia. They are likely to have some experience of teaching pupils with learning differences and may have attended courses to learn more about relevant support techniques. Most teachers are aware of speech, language and communication needs (SCLN) as a general concept, and they will likely be aware of sound production dificulties, or stammering. However, although DLD (previously known as SLI – specific language impairment) is likely to affect 2 children in any mixed ability class of 30, it remains little known.

Friday 22nd September is DLD awareness day 2017. There is so much good information available that I thought it would make more sense for me to provide links than to reinvent the wheel.

I hope you will find it interesting and useful for supporting your students!

I Can factsheet

Afasic glossary

DLD fact sheet & case studies

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