Find out about the Level 3 qualification

This Level 3 continuing professional development (CPD) Award, enables the children's workforce to develop the knowledge and skills needed to effectively support all children's speech, language and communication development and identify those who are struggling.

I did enjoy this course and have found it beneficial within my work place. I have ideas on ways that we can implement improvements to help and support the children that have additional needs.

Platform 3 aims to develop the appropriate knowledge and skills to enable learners to:

  • Understand the importance of speech, language and communication
  • Identify the signs of those children who are experiencing difficulties
  • Promote speech, language and communication development
  • Explore ways to support children and young people who have speech, language and communication needs (SLCN)

The Award is made up of two mandatory units which should be undertaken consecutively and a further third unit, which learners can choose from a bank of four.

Mandatory units:

  • Unit A/601/2872: Support speech, language and communication development
  • Unit L/601/2889: Support children and young people's speech, language and communication skills

Optional units - from which one must be chosen:

  • Unit J/601/2888: Support the speech, language and communication development of children who are learning more than one language
  • Unit L/601/2861: Supporting positive practice with children and young people with speech, language and communication needs
  • Unit M/601/2884: Understand the speech, language and communication needs of children and young people with behavioural, emotional and social difficulties
  • Unit Y/601/2877: Work with parents, families and carers to support their children's speech, language and communication development

Please click here to download the learning outcomes and assessment criteria for each of the units

How is it assessed?

To achieve the Level 3 Award, learners must successfully complete 3 units (2 mandatory and one optional) demonstrating that they meet the assessment criteria.

Very good course in helping me to understand children’s needs especially in the young age.

Learners study online learning materials that are packed with activities and opportunities to check your learning before submitting a series of portfolio tasks to be assessed by a tutor. Part of the Award is assessed in relation to real work settings, ensuring that learning is taken and fully applied within real practice, contributing to improving quality within settings as well as by individuals.

For further information about completing the qualification, please download our Platform 3 FAQ document

Who is it suitable for?
I enjoyed this course and I’m pleased that I undertook it.

The Award is relevant for practitioners in a wide range of settings, including early years, health, primary and secondary schools, and across a number of roles. It may be particularly applicable for those working in early years or in a support role in schools, such as teaching assistants or learning support staff.

Why is the qualification so important?

Speech, language and communication skills are central skills for life. Communication is at the core of every child and young person’s learning, behaviour and social and emotional development. A solid foundation in speech, language and communication is essential as a basis to allow other skills to develop.

The latest Early Years Foundation Stage profile results for England show just 40% of children reach a good level of development by the end of reception, with the areas of Communication & Literacy ranked lowest. This number is increased to 55% in areas of social disadvantage.

Speech, language and communication needs (SLCN) is the most prevalent special educational need in state funded primary schools and is associated with the 3 more prevalent needs in secondary schools: behavioural, emotional and social difficulties (BESD), moderate learning difficulties and specific learning difficulties.

Raising the skill level of the children and young people’s workforce helps to increase the quality of provision and ensures better outcomes for children and young people.

Developing practitioners’ skills in identifying and supporting SLCN at the earliest possible time helps to minimise the impact that these needs may have on the child or young person.

Developing workforce qualifications and encouraging professional development link with the Ofsted Common Inspection Framework, as well as schools’ and settings’ duties under the Special Educational Needs and Disabilities Code of Practice.

Who can access Platform 3?
Fitting it in when there was an opportunity to work. So it was flexible around life.

As well as the current pilot project involving childminders, The Communication Trust are now offering approved centres and training providers the opportunity to subscribe to use Platform 3 as a model of delivery. The aim is to increase learner access to the award so that the maximum number and type can undertake the qualification to ensure the best impact on the greatest number of children.

For more information, please click