Language pathologists sometimes called “speech-language pathologists” or “speech therapists” use special instruments and assessment techniques to diagnose the nature and extent of any impairment or disorder people have with producing speech sounds clearly or any difficulties they have with vocal pitch or with swallowing. Such disorders may be due to a variety of causes including stroke brain injury developmental delays or disorders cleft palate or hearing loss. Once a diagnosis is made they develop a treatment plan for the needs of the individual patient. They may teach the patient how to produce sounds or to swallow but in some cases they teach patients how to use automated speech devices or sign language. When appropriate they may recommend hearing aids. Language pathologists keep patient records as to the initial evaluation and the progress the patient is making. When appropriate they may work with or keep in touch with the patient’s family. Language pathologists work in medical or other health care settings schools offices but some travel to private homes to offer their services. Language pathologists need a master’s degree ideally from a program accredited by the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association. Such programs offer courses in anatomy physiology acoustics and the psychology of communication. Almost all States require language pathologists to have a license which they can acquire by completing the master’s degree passing a national examination on speech-language pathology having the required number of hours of clinical experience during their training followed by nine months of clinical experience after graduation. They are required to participate in continuing education to maintain their license. Job prospects for language pathologists are very good especially for those fluent in more than one language. According to the website www.ehow.com the median annual salary earned by language pathologists is approximately $66000.
|Education Required:||Master's Degree|
|Tasks:||Treats disorders related to language development.
Develops individualized treatment plans for patients.
Keeps evaluation records.
Helps people correct their language difficulties.
|Also Called:||Speech Pathologist