Learning Disability Today
Supporting professionals working in learning disability and autism services

Talk it out

Specific language impairments affect a person’s ability to understand language, but can be easily missed – with detrimental effects to the sufferer, as Maxine Frances Roper explains. “Meek as a bleedin’ lamb.” These are the words of an 18-year-old man to a speech and language therapist, describing his feelings upon finally receiving the right support at college, after being blighted by underachievement and behavioural problems throughout secondary school. His inappropriately glib speech is typical of someone with a type of language disorder known as specific language impairment (SLI), which affects the ability to understand spoken language. People with SLI are


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