In Summary - Speech & Language Therapist
Speech & Language Therapists typically work in the following Career Sectors:
Videos & Interviews
Lisa Kelly, Speech and Language
Lisa Kelly is a Speech & Language Therapist employed by the HSE. She did a 4 year degree course in Clinical Speech and Language Studies in TCD. Continuing professional development is an important part of her job. This includes attending courses that are organised to train new assessment and therapy skills and has attended several courses over the past year and a half.
Videos on the Web
- Speech & Language Therapist- from: Youtube Search
- Speech and Language Therapist - from: icould [UK] Video
The Work - Speech & Language Therapist
Speech and language therapists help people to minimise or overcome impaired speech, voice, language or swallowing difficulties. They diagnose and assess conditions so a plan of treatment can be implemented.
This plan of treatment must be both effective in improving the condition and interesting enough to keep the client's attention. Work with children, in particular, requires the therapist to devise imaginative and varied exercises.
Clients are usually seen on a one-to-one basis, although the therapist may decide that group sessions are beneficial to some. Progress can be very slow and patients may be treated for several years. Full recovery may not always be possible and the therapist must be able to cope with the frustration and disappointment this can cause.
Children form a large client group for the speech and language therapist. Speech difficulties often have profound social, psychological and educational implications that may be minimised by early treatment. Young people may need help with speech difficulties ranging from stammering to mispronunciation - the kinds of problem that lead them to withdraw from social situations.
Adults usually have speech difficulties as a result of accidents or illnesses such as strokes, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson's disease or cancer. Speech and language therapists may also help people with learning disabilities and mental health problems
Most commonly reported Work Tasks
- Monitor patients' progress and adjust treatments accordingly.
- Develop or implement treatment plans for problems such as stuttering, delayed language, swallowing disorders, or inappropriate pitch or harsh voice problems, based on own assessments and recommendations of physicians, psychologists, or social workers.
- Write reports and maintain proper documentation of information, such as client Medicaid or billing records or caseload activities, including the initial evaluation, treatment, progress, and discharge of clients.
- Participate in and write reports for meetings regarding patients' progress, such as individualized educational planning (IEP) meetings, in-service meetings, or intervention assistance team meetings.
- Evaluate hearing or speech and language test results, barium swallow results, or medical or background information to diagnose and plan treatment for speech, language, fluency, voice, or swallowing disorders.
- Complete administrative responsibilities, such as coordinating paperwork, scheduling case management activities, or writing lesson plans.
- Develop individual or group activities or programs in schools to deal with behavior, speech, language, or swallowing problems.
- Instruct clients in techniques for more effective communication, such as sign language, lip reading, or voice improvement.
- Administer hearing or speech and language evaluations, tests, or examinations to patients to collect information on type and degree of impairments, using written or oral tests or special instruments.
- Educate patients and family members about various topics, such as communication techniques or strategies to cope with or to avoid personal misunderstandings.
Most commonly reported Work Activities
- Developing Objectives and Strategies Establishing long-range objectives and specifying the strategies and actions to achieve them.
- Getting Information Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
- Documenting/Recording Information Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/magnetic form.
- Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge Keeping up-to-date technically and applying new knowledge to your job.
- Assisting and Caring for Others Providing personal assistance, medical attention, emotional support, or other personal care to others such as coworkers, customers, or patients.
- Evaluating Information to Determine Compliance with Standards Using relevant information and individual judgment to determine whether events or processes comply with laws, regulations, or standards.
- Making Decisions and Solving Problems Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.
- Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work Developing specific goals and plans to prioritize, organize, and accomplish your work.
- Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships Developing constructive and cooperative working relationships with others, and maintaining them over time.
- Thinking Creatively Developing, designing, or creating new applications, ideas, relationships, systems, or products, including artistic contributions.
Interests - Speech & Language Therapist
This occupation is typically suited for people with the following Career Interests:
The Social person's interests focus on interacting with the people in their environment. In all cases, the Social person enjoys the personal contact with other people in preference to the impersonal dealings with things, data and ideas found in other groups.
Many will seek out positions where there is direct contact with the public in some advisory role, whether a receptionist or a counsellor. Social people are motivated by an interest in different types of people and like diversity in their work environments. Many are drawn towards careers in the caring professions and social welfare area, whilst others prefer teaching and other 'informing' roles.
The Linguistic's interests are usually focused on ideas and information exchange. They tend to like reading a lot, and enjoy discussion about what has been said. Some will want to write about their own ideas and may follow a path towards journalism, story writing or editing. Others will develop skills in other languages, perhaps finding work as a translator or interpreter. Most Linguistic types will enjoy the opportunity to teach or instruct people in a topic they are interested in.
The Investigative person will usually find a particular area of science to be of interest. They are inclined toward intellectual and analytical activities and enjoy observation and theory. They may prefer thought to action, and enjoy the challenge of solving problems with sophiscticated technology. These types prefer mentally stimulating environments and often pay close attention to developments in their chosen field.
You will need patience and self-confidence, along with the ability to encourage, understand and inspire. You will be free to plan your work and determine your own methods, so initiative and organisational skills are essential
You need to be an effective communicator and have a good command of written English. Excellent hearing and clear, accurate speech is vital.
Entry Requirements - Speech & Language Therapist
Pay & Salary - Speech & Language Therapist
Salary Range (thousands per year)* 33k - 64k
Speech & Language Therapist: 33 - 50
Senior Speech & Language Therapist: 50 - 59
Clinical Specialist Speech & Language Therapist: 55 - 64
Last Updated: March, 2017
* The lower figures typically reflect starting salaries. Higher salaries are awarded to those with greater experience and responsibility. Positions in Dublin sometimes command higher salaries.
Labour Market Updates - Speech & Language Therapist
While demand has remained strong, there is no evidence of a shortage of therapists (including physiotherapists, occupational, speech and language.
National Skills Bulletin 2018
Useful Contacts - Speech & Language Therapist
Irish Association of Speech & Language Therapists
Health Service Executive (HSE)
CORU - Regulating Health & Social Care Professionals