My Child Gets “Speech”… What Does That Actually Mean?

Speech Language Specialists work on “goals” which are based on the type of communication difficulties your child has. A communication disorder may be evident in one or more of the following areas.

  1. Speech – encompasses articulation of sounds, fluency, and/or voice.
  • Articulation– production of speech sounds. Difficulties may be in sound substitutions, omissions, additions or distortions.
  • Fluency flow of speaking. Difficulties may be in rate, rhythm, repetitions of sounds, syllables, words, or phrases.
  • Voice vocal production. Difficulties may be in vocal quality, pitch, loudness, resonance, and/or duration.
  1. Language – encompasses an individual’s comprehension of spoken (listening and speaking), written (reading and writing) and/or other symbol system (American Sign Language). Language is often classified as expressive (speaking and writing) or receptive (listening and reading). There are five language domains that fall under three areas.

Form of language

  • Phonology the sound system of a language and the rules that govern it.
  • Morphology the rule system of “morphemes” (minimal units of language with meaning). For example, add the morpheme –s to the word “cat” and it changes the meaning of the word (cats).
  • Syntax– the rules that govern how words are combined to make sentences.

Content of language

  • Semantics– word and sentence meaning.

Function of language

  • Pragmatics using language functionally and socially appropriate.
  1. Central Auditory Processing – encompasses deficits in a person’s ability to process information without having a hearing impairment.