The SHAPE CODING™ system now has it own website –

The SHAPE CODINGTM system was designed by Speech & Language Therapist Dr Susan Ebbels at Moor House School & College to teach spoken and written grammar to school-aged children with Developmental Language Disorder (DLD). It is now widely used across the UK and indeed worldwide.

It was designed primarily for school-aged children and young people with language disorders but has also been used with younger children, children with hearing impairment, children with Down syndrome and adults with acquired aphasia. 

The SHAPE CODINGTM system uses a visual coding system to show the rules for how words are put together in sentences, to develop the child’s understanding and use of grammar, so that they can communicate more effectively.

The primary focus is on oral language, but it can also be used to develop written language. 

Dr Susan Ebbels, Director of the Research and Training Institute and Highly Specialist Speech & Language Therapist
Dr Susan Ebbels

The SHAPE CODING™ system includes use of shapes (syntactic structures), colours (for word classes), arrows (tense and aspect) and lines (gender and plurals). It aims to be able to represent most aspects of English grammar and thus is flexible enough to be used from the very early word combinations to complex structures.

Shape Coding


The Moor House Research and Training Institute offers three accredited courses in the SHAPE CODINGTM system for Speech and Language Therapists (SLTs) and those working within Education, which aim to improve professionals’ understanding of English grammar, the SHAPE CODINGTM system and its practical use within education:

Please visit our training page for more information.

Please note that we are currently the only providers of training and resources for the SHAPE CODINGTM system. If you are offered any training or resources via other sources, they are not accredited and their quality and accuracy is uncertain.


For information about our App and other SHAPE CODINGTM resources please


For information on research evidence for the SHAPE CODINGTM system please

The SHAPE CODINGTM system is a UK Registered Trade Mark under number 3284600, and the SHAPE CODINGTM system logo is a UK Registered Trade Mark under number 3261873

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