To assess the impact of Infant Language Link on pupil attainment, we compared the progress of Reception children from schools using our package for two terms, with those from control schools providing typical in-school SLCN support. All 71 children were assessed at the beginning and end of the academic year on a range of recognised speech and language assessments.

Did the Language Link interventions make a difference to the children’s language skills?

The results of the study were overwhelmingly positive. There were highly significant differences in performance with the experimental group making more progress compared to the control group.

Across the standardised assessment measures, the children in the experimental group made an average of 5 months’ progress above expected progress due to maturation, compared to an average of only 2 months’ progress for the control children.

Chart Key: SS sentence structure; WS word structure; C&FD concepts and following direction; RS – recalling sentences

Subtests form the CELF Preschool 2UK: Wiig, E., Secord, W. and Semel, E. Harcourt Assessment.

Would children following Language Link be less likely to need ongoing support?

There was also a significant difference between the groups as to whether ongoing support was required for the children. 75% of the children in the experimental group no longer needed further language intervention at the end of the study compared to 44% of the control group.

The language intervention took place over just two terms with most children attending between 12 and 20 weekly half hour sessions delivered by TAs as well as classroom support through whole class teaching strategies.

Did the children in the experimental group maintain these gains?

We followed up a small number of children from the experimental group 14 months from the end of the study. All of these children had received little or no intervention in this time.

The results show that gains in language performance have been maintained.

Infant Language Link is used by schools across the country in the same way that it was used in our impact study, so these are the results that you can expect from using the package in your school.

Share this article

Please login to view this content