Acquired vs. Developmental Language Disorders

Instructor: Emily Cummins
Language is a huge part of human communication and interaction. In this lesson, we'll talk about two major types of language disorders: developmental and acquired language disorders. We'll talk about the difference and how they impact language ability.

Language Disorders

Language is a crucial part of our day-to-day life. Imagine if you couldn't find the words to use in a conversation with someone? Or if you couldn't quite understand colloquial speech? Or couldn't follow the punchline of a joke?

Talking is an important part of our daily lives
talking; speech

Language disorders refer to a number of conditions where speaking or understanding words and language is difficult. People who have a language disorder might find they can't come up with words or they might not be able to understand other people.

There are two primary types of language disorders: developmental disorders and acquired disorders. Let's talk about those now.

Developmental Language Disorder

Developmental language disorders refer to a condition where children experience problems learning and acquiring language. Children who experience developmental language issues often experience delays in language learning.

Delay Vs. Disorder

We should note that there is a difference between 'language disorder' and 'language delay'. Language delay usually just means the child learns language a bit slower. Generally, this means that children will eventually learn the same amount of language as others, but they do not follow the general pattern of language acquisition.

There are a number of factors that can cause delays in language, including forms of mental retardation. Generally, children with mental retardation experience delays in all forms of development, including language.

Language delays can also be the result of hearing problems. Children who have hearing loss will have a difficult time acquiring language, as hearing others talk is a key way in which we learn to speak.

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