SLP stands for speech language pathologists, and these are trained and skilled professionals who closely study the tone of voice, the enunciation of sounds as well as the human intonation. These professionals typically evaluate and diagnose people with different speech disorders, and then use different tools and techniques to help them improve their communication skills.
SLPs work closely with people who suffered brain injuries, who have dyslexia or who have suffered a stroke, although they commonly work with children as well.. They can come up with personalized treatment plans that include muscle and swallowing exercising. The median yearly salary of these professionals is of around $69,000 a year, although the best paid speech language pathologists can make as much as $110,000 a year.
Speech Language Pathologist Pay Scale In Different Parts Of The US
The median yearly salary of a SLP who works in Alabama is of around $90,000, while that of one who works in Alaska is of just $75,000, which is little over the national average. Arizona pays its SLP professionals with a median salary of $78,000, while Arkansas offers them as much as $88,000 a year, California around $98,000 a year and in Connecticut, these professionals should expect a median pay of around $96,000 a year. The state of Colorado pays them with $78,000 a year, while Florida offers them around $85,000 a year, on average.
SLP Job Description
Speech language pathologists specialize in human communication. They evaluate and diagnose different disorders related to the cognitive communication, swallowing, speech or language of the patients, and they work with a variety of different patients from the youngest ones to seniors.
The duties and responsibilities of a SLP professional are many, as they can work in agencies, private practices, clinics, hospitals and organizations. They aim to prescribe an accurate treatment for each individual patient, as well as to investigate all the behavioral patterns that may have triggered communication disorders. Moreover, these professionals also supervise and direct various clinical or public school awareness programs, and they constantly learn about the complexity of the human communication process.
It often happens that the speech language pathologists are an important part of a greater team that often consists of physicians, audiologists, psychologists, rehab counselors, social workers, teachers and many others. Some of them may choose to work in a clinical setting while others work for corporations, public and private schools, research laboratories, adult day care centers, home health agencies, state and federal government agencies, colleges and universities, short and long term nursing facilities and others.
How To become A SLP?
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Before you move on to the formal training required for becoming a speech language pathologist, it is important to make sure that you firstly have all the necessary skills for working as a SLP in a field that can be very stressful and demanding at times. The speech language pathologist must be persistent, patient, tolerant and sensitive, he must be willing to help others achieve their goals and show empathy whenever needed.
After that, it is important to focus on graduate-level education and enroll in a four-year Bachelor’s Degree training program. Once you have gotten your degree, it is important to take your education to the next level by enrolling in a Master’s Degree program in an accredited SLP program. It is highly recommended for all those who want to become speech and language pathologists to have a strong foundation in liberal arts, as this is one of the best and most relevant undergraduate majors for this profession.
Also, prior to enrolling in the Bachelor’s and Master’s degree programs, it is recommended to pursue coursework in fields like general science, anatomy, psychology as well as behavioral science. If you want to work in the academic environment and teach other future speech and language pathologists the basics of the profession, then it is highly recommended to opt for a PhD in the field as well.
Certification is essential in order to work as a speech and language pathologist. The basic eligibility requirements may vary from one state to another, but they include a clinical fellowship training period coupled with a certification exam. The certification is provided by the CCC, or the Council for Clinical Certification.
SLP Salary In Canada, Australia And The United Kingdom
The median yearly salary of a speech and language pathologist is between C$75,000 and C$85,000 in Canada, while a SLP who works in the United Kingdom can make between 47,000 and 49,000 pounds. Also, an Australian speech and language pathologist should expect to make between Au$43,000 and Au$66,000 a year, here.
Verdict On SLP Salary
Speech and language pathologists can get very rewarding salaries, depending on their education level, their expertise and work environment.