When deciding to become a Speech-Language Pathologist, no one told me that I would spend the rest of my career explaining what it is I do. But as I got further into my education, I realized that the scope of what an SLP can do is so large that it’s no wonder no one knows what we do.
A Speech-Language Pathologist is a specialist who focuses on communication, speech, and language. Speech-Language & Audiology of Canada (SAC) states that an SLP can work on a wide range of skills. SAC created the list below highlighting some of the skill areas that an SLP can work on.
- Speech sound production (making and using sounds)
- Resonance (the airflow of speech)
- Voice (volume, pitch, vocal hygiene)
- Fluency (stutters, atypical dysfluencies)
- Prelinguistic communication (back and forth interactions, joint attention, gestures)
- Cognitive communication (attention, memory, problem solving, decision making)
- Language comprehension and expression (understanding what is being said, following directions, getting a message out clearly)
- Pre-literacy and literacy skills (recognizing or producing rhymes, understanding that stories have a beginning, middle and end)
- Social communication (entering into play, making friends, understanding the “unspoken rules of social situations”
- Feeding and swallowing
- Alternative augmentative communication (using visual systems, signs, electronic systems to communicate)
- Aural rehabilitation (working with people with hearing aids or cochlear implants)
The original version of the list above as well as more information about the scope of practice for a Speech-Language Pathologist (settings and roles), can be found at SAC Scope of Practice.
If you have any other questions, feel free to contact me. I would be happy to discuss my career with you!