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Target WordAdvanced Workshop for Speech-Language Pathologists

Target Word is a two-day advanced Hanen workshop that certifies Hanen Certified SLPs to offer Target Word™ The Hanen Program® for Parents of Children who are Late Talkers. This workshop gives you the tools to enable parents whose children have severe expressive delays to help their child learn to use words and lay the foundation for early sentence use.

Speech-language pathologists (SLPs) often see very young children who leave them puzzled. These are children who appear to have the skills necessary for expressive language development but whose vocabulary is notably behind other children their age. Cognitive skills, comprehension, social and play skills are all developing as expected; the children just aren’t using words or word combinations like other children their age. Target Word™ The Hanen Program® for Parents of Children Who are Late Talkers can help solve this clinical puzzle.

It is important for SLPs to be able to identify the children who are Late Talkers and to have specific knowledge and know how to support their primary expressive language needs. In a Target Word workshop, SLPs learn how to help parents build their child’s expressive vocabulary through responsive, child-centered interactions. They also learn to help each parent choose 10 individual “target words” for their child and to guide them as to how to incorporate these words, using focused stimulation, into a variety of everyday activities and routines. The Target Word Program focuses on supporting parents in a parent-implemented intervention, that is designed to facilitate their child's expressive language in a developmentally appropriate way.

Why Take the Target Word Advanced Workshop?


►Certification to offer an evidence-based intervention program to parents

Like all Hanen Programs, Target Word was developed by expert speech-language pathologists at The Hanen Centre and is grounded in extensive research in the field of early language intervention. The program draws from research that identifies strategies known to facilitate the language development of very young children with a primary expressive language delay.

This program is based on research that shows the strategies included in Target Word accelerate the expressive vocabulary development of children who are Late Talkers.

When you offer the Target Word program to parents, you’ll help them to:

  • Set expressive communication goals for their child
  • Become more responsive when their child communicates nonverbally
  • Increase turn-taking within everyday interactions, thereby increasing opportunities for language learning
  • Use focused stimulation to highlight specific “target” words and to repeat these new words naturally during playtime and other activities
  • Join in their child's play and favourite activities and create opportunities for their child to use new words
  • Set up activities so their child is motivated to use new words

You’ll help apply these practical, easy-to-use strategies that naturally fit into everyday routines and activities. 

To read more about what parents learn in the Target Word program, click on the link below:




►First Step Diagnostic Intervention

The Target Word Program provides SLPs with an initial, diagnostic intervention for young children who are presenting with delayed expressive language due to concerns about motor speech difficulties.

In their Best Practice guidelines for Childhood Apraxia of Speech, the American Speech and Hearing Association (ASHA) recommends that intervention for very young children be designed to support a “safe communication environment that encourages increased communication”. The Target Word Program meets these criteria by helping parents create a safe and supportive communicative environment while facilitating their child's overall communication and early speech-sound development.

Following the Target Word Program, SLPs and parents will have a better understanding of next steps for supporting the language development of these children.

►Comprehensive resources to use in your Target Word Program

SLPs who attend a Target Word workshop receive all the resources required to offer the Target Word Program to parents, including a detailed Leaders Guide, program slides with embedded video examples and session by session Fidelity Checklists.

For a list of resources received at the workshop, visit the Target Word Workshop FAQ.

►Gain a license to offer Target Word 1:1

Once you have a Target Word certification, you can purchase a license to offer the Target Word Program to individual parents. If you need to work individually with parents of children who are Late Talkers, this is an ideal tool to help them learn how to support their child’s expressive language development.


►Get a license to offer the Target Word Program via Telepractice

Once you have attended the Target Word Workshop, you can also offer the program via Telepractice. The Target Word via Telepractice license is extended to Target Word Certified SLP/Ts who also have a license to offer Target Word 1:1.

This one-time fee of USD$34.95 for worldwide purchasers and CAD$39.49 for Canada (price includes HST of 13% for all provinces) per program includes:

  • Access to the Telepractice Manual, (includes information about leading a Hanen Program online, session modifications and technology requirements)
  • Downloadable Session Slides designed specifically for telepractice
  • Session Fidelity Checklists
  • Downloadable fillable parent forms

Members who have purchased both the Target Word via Telepractice license and the Target Word 1:1 license will be able to support families in a variety of clinical settings – online, in-person, in a group program or individually.


►Professional development hours

This workshop is offered for 1.65 ASHA CEUs (Advanced Level, Professional Area) Full attendance and participation during the two days is required. As a prerequisite, there is an Individual Learning Component to be completed before participation in the workshop. This workshop focuses specifically on the Target Word Program and accompanying resources and will include no or limited information on other similar or related products or services.







►Ongoing Support

As a Hanen member certified in Target Word, the Program Director Cindy Earle, as well as the Hanen team will be there to support you and answer any questions you may have about running the program or using the resources. You’ll receive frequent updates on the latest news and research concerning early childhood language development and the Target Word Program, and you’ll have easy access to all updates to the Leader’s Guide.


Taking the Target Word Workshop

The Target Word workshop is open to speech-language pathologists who:

To find a Target Word workshop near you, visit the Workshop Schedule at the link below.


WORKSHOP SCHEDULE WORKSHOP FAQ