Speech-Language Pathologist

Speech-Language Pathologist

Career Overview

Speech-language pathologists assess, diagnose, treat, and help to prevent communication and swallowing disorders in children and adults.

Education

A master's degree in speech-language pathology is generally required to do this work. A master's degree typically takes about two-three years to earn after earning a four-year bachelor's degree. Speech-language pathologists who work in schools in some areas may also be required to have a specific teaching certification. Most states require that speech-language pathologists be licensed.

Future Outlook

Employment of speech-language pathologists is projected to grow 25 percent from 2019 to 2029, much faster than the average for all occupations. As the large baby-boom population grows older, there will be more instances of health conditions such as strokes or dementia, which can cause speech or language impairments.

Work Environment

Some speech-language pathologists work in schools. Most others worked in healthcare facilities, such as hospitals.

Recommended High School Courses

  • Chemistry
  • Biology
  • Physical science
  • Physics
  • Communication
  • Statistics
  • Social science

  • Active Learning - Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.
  • Active Listening - Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
  • Complex Problem Solving - Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.
  • Coordination - Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions.
  • Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
  • Instructing - Teaching others how to do something.
  • Judgment and Decision Making - Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
  • Learning Strategies - Selecting and using training/instructional methods and procedures appropriate for the situation when learning or teaching new things.
  • Monitoring - Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
  • Negotiation - Bringing others together and trying to reconcile differences.
  • Operations Analysis - Analyzing needs and product requirements to create a design.
  • Persuasion - Persuading others to change their minds or behavior.
  • Reading Comprehension - Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
  • Service Orientation - Actively looking for ways to help people.
  • Social Perceptiveness - Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.
  • Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
  • Systems Analysis - Determining how a system should work and how changes in conditions, operations, and the environment will affect outcomes.
  • Time Management - Managing one's own time and the time of others.
  • Writing - Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.
  • Customer and Personal Service - Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
  • Education and Training - Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.
  • English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • Medicine and Dentistry - Knowledge of the information and techniques needed to diagnose and treat human injuries, diseases, and deformities. This includes symptoms, treatment alternatives, drug properties and interactions, and preventive health-care measures.
  • Psychology - Knowledge of human behavior and performance; individual differences in ability, personality, and interests; learning and motivation; psychological research methods; and the assessment and treatment of behavioral and affective disorders.
  • Therapy and Counseling - Knowledge of principles, methods, and procedures for diagnosis, treatment, and rehabilitation of physical and mental dysfunctions, and for career counseling and guidance.
  • Auditory Attention - The ability to focus on a single source of sound in the presence of other distracting sounds.
  • Category Flexibility - The ability to generate or use different sets of rules for combining or grouping things in different ways.
  • Deductive Reasoning - The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.
  • Flexibility of Closure - The ability to identify or detect a known pattern (a figure, object, word, or sound) that is hidden in other distracting material.
  • Fluency of Ideas - The ability to come up with a number of ideas about a topic (the number of ideas is important, not their quality, correctness, or creativity).
  • Hearing Sensitivity - The ability to detect or tell the differences between sounds that vary in pitch and loudness.
  • Inductive Reasoning - The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events).
  • Information Ordering - The ability to arrange things or actions in a certain order or pattern according to a specific rule or set of rules (e.g., patterns of numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations).
  • Near Vision - The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
  • Oral Comprehension - The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
  • Oral Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
  • Originality - The ability to come up with unusual or clever ideas about a given topic or situation, or to develop creative ways to solve a problem.
  • Perceptual Speed - The ability to quickly and accurately compare similarities and differences among sets of letters, numbers, objects, pictures, or patterns. The things to be compared may be presented at the same time or one after the other. This ability also includes comparing a presented object with a remembered object.
  • Problem Sensitivity - The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.
  • Selective Attention - The ability to concentrate on a task over a period of time without being distracted.
  • Speech Clarity - The ability to speak clearly so others can understand you.
  • Speech Recognition - The ability to identify and understand the speech of another person.
  • Written Comprehension - The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
  • Written Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in writing so others will understand.
  • Monitor patient progress or responses to treatments.
  • Develop treatment plans that use non-medical therapies.
  • Prepare reports summarizing patient diagnostic or care activities.
  • Maintain medical facility records.
  • Collaborate with healthcare professionals to plan or provide treatment.
  • Analyze patient data to determine patient needs or treatment goals.
  • Prepare healthcare training materials.
  • Process healthcare paperwork.
  • Schedule patient procedures or appointments.
  • Train patients, family members, or caregivers in techniques for managing disabilities or illnesses.
  • Operate diagnostic or therapeutic medical instruments or equipment.
  • Test patient hearing.
  • Supervise patient care personnel.
  • Present medical research reports.
  • Maintain medical or professional knowledge.
  • Refer patients to other healthcare practitioners or health resources.
  • Advise medical personnel regarding healthcare issues.
  • Develop health assessment methods or programs.
  • Train caregivers or other non-medical personnel.
  • Conduct research to increase knowledge about medical issues.

Schools

usa_school
Abilene Christian Univers...
Adelphi University
Ball State University
Biola University
Boston University
Brescia University
California Baptist Univer...
California State Universi...
Clarion University
Cleveland State Universit...
Concordia University-wisc...
East Tennessee State Univ...
Edinboro University
Faulkner University
Florida International Uni...
Fontbonne University
Hofstra University
Idaho State University- M...
James Madison University
Marquette University
Maryville University
Minnesota State Universit...
Misericordia University
Murray State University
Northeastern State Univer...
Northern Illinois Univers...
Nova Southeastern Univers...
Saint Mary's College - No...
Saint Xavier University
Southern University And A...
Suny At New Paltz
Suny Plattsburgh
University Of Kansas- Law...
University Of Louisiana-...
University Of Mary
University Of Nebraska- K...
University Of North Texas
University Of Northern Io...
University Of South Alaba...
University Of South Dakot...
University Of The Pacific
University Of West Georgi...
University Of Wisconsin-...
canada_school
Dalhousie University
Laurentian University
Mcgill University
Mcmaster University
Université Laval
University Of Alberta
University Of Ottawa
Western University

Potential Scholarships

5 Strong Scholarship
Agnes M. Lindsay Scholars...

Approx Salary Expectation

Currency:
Low End:
$49,840.00 /yr
Avg/Med:
$79,120.00 /yr
High End:
$121,260.00 /yr

References

Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, https://www.bls.gov/ooh/.
Trend Analysis - Explorer the Market, Labour Market Information, Government of Canada https://www.jobbank.gc.ca/trend-analysis.
O*NET OnLine, National Center for O*NET Development, https://www.onetonline.org/.