Speech-Language Pathologist

Summary of profession

Speech-Language Pathology is a field that focuses on the study, diagnosis and treatment of disorders that affect a person’s speech, language, voice or swallowing function.

Working hours, patterns and environments

As a SLP you’ll work around 37.5 hours a week, Monday to Friday. You’ll usually work in a hospital’s therapy department, treat patients on wards or run a clinic. You could also work in a health centre, day nursery or school. You may visit patients in their home.

Education and skills

The minimum education required of SLPs varies from country to country and depends on where the SLP received their formal training. Canada - A master’s degree in speech-language pathology from an accredited university. United Kingdom - A three-four year undergraduate degree course OR a two year master’s degree in communicative disorders. United States of America – A master’s degree or higher in Communication Sciences & Disorders OR Speech Language Pathology.

Job growth and opportunities

There are opportunities to advance your career through education (either through a SpeechD (clinical doctorate) or research based PhD programmes. Additionally, there are many areas that you can specialize in and obtain diagnosis or age specific certifications. After several years of experience, you could also open your own clinic and work independently.