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DLD/SLI: Terms as SLP Tools

October 13, 2020
8:00 - 9:30 p.m. ET

Sponsored by SIG 1, Language Learning and Education

Speech-language pathologists have used many terms to label language disorders in children. Historically, researchers have used the term specific language impairment (SLI) to describe a unique set of deficits in language learning. Yet, at the same time, other terms were also utilized (e.g., language/learning disability, language disorder), more often in clinical settings. In 2014, CATALISE—a group of 50 child language researchers and clinicians—met to discuss using a consistent term. This group recommended the term developmental language disorder (DLD) to describe children with ongoing language issues not related to specific syndromes or intellectual disability. In this webchat, we’ll discuss the practical implications for using the terms DLD and SLI in a variety of settings. We’ll discuss the advantages of both terms and how to use the terms to advocate for children with language disorders.


  • Karla McGregor, PhD, Director of the Center for Childhood Deafness, Language and Learning at Boys Town National Research Hospital in Omaha, Nebraska
  • Mabel Rice, PhD, Director of Child Language Doctoral Program at the University of Kansas
  • Kim Murza, PhD, CCC-SLP, Associate Professor and Graduate Coordinator of Speech-Language Pathology at the University of Northern Colorado

This event is available to all ASHA members. It is not offered for CEUs.

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