skip to main content

Social Pragmatic Speech Disorders

Pragmatic language refers to the social language skills of daily interactions, including what is said, how it is said, non-verbal communication (eye contact, facial expressions, body language) and how appropriate interactions are in a given situation.

Pragmatic skills include:

    • Social communications (greeting, commenting, asking questions)
    • Conversational skills, storytelling, introducing or contributing to a topic
    • Asking for help or clarification, responding to information or offering help 
    • Avoiding repetition or irrelevant information
    • Adjusting language to suit the listener and setting 
    • Using language of a given peer group
    • Using humor
    • Appropriately gaining attention and interrupting, taking turns
    • Offering/responding to expressions of affection appropriately
    • Making eye contact
    • Using appropriate facial expressions and body language
    • Vocal intonation
    • Body distance and personal space

Many children’s difficulties with components of pragmatic language include:

Language disorders: Trouble understanding others (receptive language) or sharing thoughts, ideas and feelings (expressive language). These deficits may be spoken or written and involve the form (phonology, morphology, syntax), content (semantics) and/or use (pragmatics) of language in functional and socially appropriate ways.

Cognitive-communication disorders: Problems organizing thoughts, paying attention, remembering, planning or problem-solving. These serious deficits can be congenital or caused by a stroke, traumatic brain injury or dementia.

Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) 

Selective Mutism


Read more about speech & language disorders and treatment options at CFI…



Stay in Touch