A developmental language disorder (DLD) is a neurocognitive developmental disorder. Children with DLD process language less proficiently. They experience problems with speaking, understanding language, and/or learning sounds, words, and sentences. Additionally, they are often less capable controlling themselves and understanding their own and other people's thoughts and feelings.
Developmental in nature
This implies that children with DLD deviate from typically developing children with respect to their language and speech development as well as their cognitive and social-emotional development. Moreover, the disorder, being developmental in nature, can result in a variety of problems later on in life.
DLD is quite unknown in society because language disorders are invisible and often difficult to understand. In addition, DLD is frequently confused with other disorders, such as autism or ADHD.
At the Kentalis Academy, we conduct research and develop professional training. Within our neurocognitive perspective on DLD, we explore the relationships between different aspects of respectively language development, social-emotional development, and cognitive development. The role of inner speech within these domains is a specific point of interest in our research. And, of course, the environment (playing a major role in the development of all children) gets the attention it deserves in our theoretical framework and research.
We combine the scientific knowledge resulting from our and others’ research on DLD with the practice-based knowledge of our colleagues in the care and education departments, with whom we work closely together. Within the process of knowledge development, we also attach great importance to our collaboration with experiential experts, being persons with DLD as well as parents. The resulting expertise is used to enhance the treatment and educational processes within Kentalis and beyond. Additionally, we use our expertise to continually (re)develop the training programs for professionals.