What is Language? + What is DLD?

What is Language? + What is DLD?

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Course Information

The What is Language? What is DLD? course has been created to give teachers and families a brief overview of language and Developmental Language Disorder (DLD). It provides a starting point for conversations and more in depth exploration of language and DLD, a hidden but common disability that affects two children in the average classroom of 30 students.

The course starts by offering a snapshot of language and a window into the complexities of communication. It concludes with an overview of DLD, how to identify students with DLD in the classroom and supports that can be put in place to help students with DLD to learn.

The course should take between 1 – 3 hours to complete, depending on whether or not participants engage with the optional recommended readings, podcasts and videos. It has been designed to be self-paced so there is no set timeframe for completion. Participants will receive a certificate of completion once all compulsory elements of the course have been completed.

Course Instructors


Charlotte Forwood is a registered Teacher and Certified Practising Speech Pathologist working in both the primary and secondary school settings.

Charlotte has had a varied career path encompassing teaching roles, speech pathology practice, educational publishing and consulting. She has worked in government, independent and specialist schools in Australia and the UK. She is the co-designer of ISV’s Middle Years Language Consultancy Program and the Secondary Students Language Consultancy Program and the author of the award winning STEM Investigations resource for Year 3 – 6 students.

Charlotte has a particular interest in vocabulary development (the focus of her PhD thesis), language and literacy skills in primary/adolescence, the science of learning and the language associated with metacognition. She also enjoys tinkering with tech and opportunities for collaboration with individuals and organisations beyond the classroom.

Charlotte is currently a global ambassador for Raising Awareness of Developmental Language Disorder (RADLD), coordinator of the Eastern Melbourne branch of Think Forward Educators, co-coordinator of the Boroondara Gifted Network and a designer for The DLD Project.


Shaun Ziegenfusz is a speech pathologist, and researcher with more than 10 years experience working with people with DLD and their families. He currently works in private practice and collaboratively with schools to provide assessment and intervention pathways.

Shaun is also a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) candidate at Griffith University where he researches the needs and necessary supports for school-aged students with DLD from the perspective of key stakeholders, as well as being a volunteer member of the Raising Awareness of Developmental Language Disorder (RADLD) International Committee.

Additionally, Shaun regularly lectures at a number of Australian universities to support future speech pathologists to grow their knowledge.

Shaun is passionate about blending clinical experience and research to support students, families, professionals and schools.

Teacher – 3 Month Access Pass

3 months of access

Parent/Carer – 3 Month Access Pass

3 months of access

Therapist – 3 Month Access Pass

3 months of access

Person with DLD – 3 Month Access

3 months of access

Community – 3 Month Access Pass

3 months of access

Introduction – What is Language?


Modes of Communication

Receptive and Expressive Language

Content, Form and Use

Executive Function

Typical Language Development

General Tips

Conclusion – What is Language?

Introduction – What is DLD?

Signs of DLD

Classroom Strategies

Conclusion – What is DLD?

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