Seminar Detail

Developing Social and Academic Language: Optimizing Classroom Success

Friday, February 21, 2014 at 8:00 AM - 3:30 PM

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For more information: Call (800) 844-8260
Concerns about falling literacy and math scores of students in the United States have resulted in all states developing new educational standards or adopting the Common Core Standards. Students with language learning differences (English language learners) and language learning disabilities (LLD) are typically served in general education classrooms and are expected to achieve these standards.

Students with language learning differences and with language learning disorders typically exhibit deficits in both social and academic language. Rather than working on either social OR academic language skills, the two can and should be addressed simultaneously.

Dr. Westby will present:
  • Characteristics and complexities of social and academic language, so you are better able to serve students who struggle in the classroom
  • Interrelationship between social and academic language and the strategies to promote both social and academic language – allowing you to work on both simultaneously
  • How to identify the language foundations necessary for achieving Common Core State Standards, so your instruction will easily align
  • Ways to differentiate the content, process, and products of instruction to promote social and academic language

When your students comprehend social and academic language, they will be more successful in the classroom and in social situations.
  1. Identify language foundations for Common Core Standards.
  2. Describe and evaluate the language skills of students with executive function deficits.
  3. Design interventions to promote comprehension of social and academic language.
  4. Design intervention that differentiate the content, process, and products of instruction to promote social and academic language development.
  5. Describe the characteristics of academic language.
  6. Explain interrelationships between social and academic language.


Carol Westby, CCC-SLP, PhD, BCS-CL, ASDCS, is an internationally renowned expert on play assessment and development in children. She is the developer of the renowned Westby Symbolic Play Scale, a research-based scale used to assess children’s social and play skills. Dr. Westby has written and implemented projects to support personnel preparation, clinical service, and research, including Project PLAY (Play and Language Attunement in Young Children), that trains caregivers to increase the development of play, theory of mind, and language.

Dr. Westby is a fellow of the American-Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA), is Board Certified in Child Language and Literacy Disorders, and has received the Distinguished Alumnus Award from Geneva College and the University of Iowa’s Department of Speech Pathology and Audiology, the ASHA Award for Contributions to Multicultural Affairs, the Honors of ASHA, and the Kleffner Lifetime Clinical Career Award.

Dr. Westby has published and presented nationally and internationally on topics including play, autobiographical memory, theory of mind, language-literacy relationships, narrative/expository development and facilitation, adverse childhood experiences, screen time, trauma, metacognition/executive function, and assessment and intervention with culturally/linguistically diverse populations. She has consulted with the New Mexico Preschool for the Deaf, which employs a play-based curriculum.

Dr. Westby has been a visiting professor at Flinders University in South Australia where she worked on a language/literacy curriculum, and at Brigham Young University where she consulted on SEEL, a systematic and engaging emergent literacy program that employs playful practice. She is a consultant for Bilingual Multicultural Services in Albuquerque, NM and holds an affiliated appointment in Communication Disorders at Brigham Young University in Provo, UT.

Speaker Disclosures:

Financial: Carol Westby is a consultant for Bilingual Multicultural Services. Dr. Westby receives a speaking honorarium from PESI, Inc. She is the author of numerous chapters and articles; and is published by various publishers including Jones & Bartlett and Pearson.

Non-financial: Carol Westby is the developer of the Westby Play Scale. Dr. Westby is a fellow of the American-Speech-Language-Hearing Association.
Credits listed below are for full attendance at the live event only. After attendance has been verified, pre-registered attendees will receive an email from PESI Customer Service with the subject line, “Evaluation and Certificate” within one week. This email will contain a link to complete the seminar evaluation and allow attendees to print, email or download a certificate of completion if in full attendance. For those in partial attendance (arrived late or left early), a letter of attendance is available through that link and an adjusted certificate of completion reflecting partial credit will be issued within 30 days (if your board allows). Please see “live seminar schedule” for full attendance start and end times. NOTE: Boards do not allow credit for breaks or lunch.

If your profession is not listed, please contact your licensing board to determine your continuing education requirements and check for reciprocal approval. For other credit inquiries not specified below, or questions on home study credit availability, please contact or 800-844-8260 before the event.

Materials that are included in this course may include interventions and modalities that are beyond the authorized practice of mental health professionals. As a licensed professional, you are responsible for reviewing the scope of practice, including activities that are defined in law as beyond the boundaries of practice in accordance with and in compliance with your professions standards.

The planning committee and staff who controlled the content of this activity have no relevant financial relationships to disclose. For speaker disclosures, please see speaker bios.

PESI, Inc. offers continuing education programs and products under the brand names PESI, PESI Healthcare, PESI Rehab and Psychotherapy Networker.

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