Detecting disabilities

In 2020 we are setting off on our biggest challenge yet. Funded by an NIHR i4i grant, the team is seeking to collect over 600 narrative language samples from children around England and Wales. A fun storytelling app will be made available to download and we need as many children as possible to help us by sharing their version of the story. Sign up here to keep up to date on the project

A two-year study

The innovative collaboration between Therapy Box, the Bristol Speech and Language Therapy Research Unit, Newcastle University and three NHS sites in Hackney, Newcastle and Bristol, started in November 2019 and will take place across two years. At the start of the project, the team will be seeking 600 children to record their stories, to help train the app to recognise the children having trouble with their language. In the second year of the project, the app will be put through its paces by speech and language therapists and families coming to clinics for assessment.


About the app

To help speech and language therapists evaluate the language of children who may have Developmental Language Disorders we created The Language Explorer. The Language Explorer is a free fun story-retelling app that aims to learn about children’s language and communication abilities. It aims to achieve this by collecting data on how children between the ages of 4 and 8 perform on its three assessments: story retell, comprehension and repetition.


It has been designed with children to ensure it is engaging, and to make sure the language used is suitable for its audience. After creating your profile, you will first listen to this story. You will then be asked to retell the story in your own words, complete a quiz and play a repeating game. Once you’ve completed all three challenges, you have the option to listen back to your story and play a game where you steer your ship to collect as many treasure coins as possible. Make sure to avoid those dangerous rocks!

Get involved

Interested in the project?


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