Improving learner outcomes

Speech, Language and Communication Needs course

The term SLCN is commonly used to describe difficulties in listening, understanding and communicating with others. Learners with SLCN may have difficulty with:

  • understanding, following and giving directions
  • using a wide range of appropriate vocabulary
  • expressing needs, ideas and information
  • sequencing and prioritising tasks, negotiating with others and working in groups

Accessing the curriculum can be challenging for learners with SLCN, due to limited reading, writing and spelling skills.

This course looks at the impact speech, language and communication needs can have on a learner’s life. It shows how you can make your classroom and practice more inclusive for these learners and offers practical assessment ideas and intervention strategies.

The course is CPD certified for 20 hours of learning.

On successful completion of the course, participants will be able to:

  • Describe the prevalence and hidden nature of speech, language and communication needs
  • Differentiate between typical and atypical stages of language acquisition
  • Identify receptive, expressive and pragmatic language difficulties and evaluate their impact on access to the curriculum and social inclusion
  • Explain the purpose and process of individual education assessments
  • Use checklists to assess attention, listening, expressive language and fluency skills
  • Observe and evaluate social use of language and independent learning strategies
  • Design and plan strategies to support the development of phonological and articulation skills
  • Devise interventions to strengthen and expand vocabulary
  • Arrange opportunities to develop social skills and understanding of non-verbal language
  • Create an action plan to practise course application skills in the classroom

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Feedback from our participants

One of the things I have learned is that pupils learn in very different ways. Many of them need visual cues to help them understand and access the curriculum. Another thing I have learned is that some of the children don't have skills to filter out unimportant information and it's beneficial to relay what the teacher has said in simpler terms. Giving them one instruction at a time is also important.

Teaching Assistant

This training has had a huge impact on how I communicate and teach learners with SLCN. I can identify individual learners needs and adapt lessons so that they can understand the tasks given to complete, feel confident in their own abilities and not be afraid to ask for help when needed.

Teaching Assistant

The setting of these goals enabled me to focus on the areas in which the child needed support and to set aside time to work individually with him. I have used this in my practice with other children, identifying areas which need support and providing short one to one small group sessions to address these.

Teaching Assistant

My classroom practice, and that of my TA has become more effective. I have found the professional support and advice from the team, the forums and the group discussions with colleagues, useful and informative and will definitely be revisiting the course materials to support my practice.


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