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Careers as a Speech-Language Pathologist - Careers

Careers as a Speech-Language Pathologist   by James Brown

in Careers    (submitted 2010-01-06)

A Speech-Language Pathologist is a specialist that works with people who may have defects or language impediments that can interfere with their life, jobs, and everyday routine. This can include people that have defects such as Cerebral Palsy or Multiple Sclerosis, or that are deaf or mute. Speech Language Pathologists work with people affected by these problems to teach them to speak or in some cases teach them alternative means of communication. Sign language is just one of these means of alternative communication.

To become a Speech-Language Pathologist (SLP), one must first obtain a High School Diploma or GED. Although most schools prefer a diploma, some accept students with a GED. The next step is to complete undergraduate programs such as Linguistics, Psychology, and Physiology. Then a Master's Degree Program will have to be completed. Some Master's Degree Programs to become an SLP may require less, more, or different undergraduate courses to be completed before entry. These Master's Degree Programs can take anywhere from 2-4 years and include taking classes in Linguistics, Acoustics, Voice Development and Disorders, Psychology, and Neurology. Most programs require practical training but this varies by school and location. If the SLP wants to work in a University Research Program or have a teaching position, a PhD program must be completed. These can take 4-5 years to complete and can include vigorous training and research.

Most states require Sleep-Language Pathologists to have a license. In order for a SLP to obtain a license, one must have a Master's Degree. Also, a passing score on the National Examinations for Sleep-Language Pathology Licensing will be needed. Some states may require some supervised clinical experience. Some state PhD Program requirements may vary depending on specific location, school, and grades.

After completion of the selected Degree programs, one must find a job. Most SLPs work in private offices, multiple physician offices, or Speech Therapy Centers. Although most work in private offices, some prefer to work in hospitals to assist doctors through consultation and training programs with patients or doctors that may need assistance with dealing with or treating speech problems.

Sleep-Language Pathologists usually don't have too much of a physical stress but they can have very demanding emotion stress from dealing with patients. Most work 8-10 hours a day (40-50 hours a week) but some must work late nights or weekends to accommodate their client's schedules.

Sleep-Language Pathologists usually make an average annual salary of anywhere from $35,000 to $70,000. This can average anywhere from $8-$25 per hour varying on location, place one is working at the time, and your job experience.

Speech-Language Pathologists work hard to help those in difficult situations under which speaking is either not feasible or is hard to do. They provide a better way for people to communicate or make it easier for them to use the methods they have already been taught or can already do. Speech-Language Pathology is a great profession for anyone that would like to make a difference in someone's life by making it easier to communicate to the world around them.