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What does a Speech-Language Pathologist Do?

Speech and language therapeutic services aim to treat speech, language, cognitive-communication and swallowing disorders in children of all ages. Our Speech-Language Pathologist’s work closely together with other staff members when needed and are an integral part of our interdisciplinary team. Treatment sessions may be offered jointly with other team members, as appropriate. In addition to individual sessions, group sessions and school based services are available.

Mission:

The goal of the Speech-Language Pathologist is to help the child communicate effectively in their daily environment. Therapy goals may be to improve speech intelligibility, increase vocabulary skills, increase length of utterances, or improve socially appropriate communication behaviors such as eye contact, initiating conversation, and turn-taking.

Our therapists are specially trained in the field of Pediatric Therapy. They incorporate play into each session and are trained to be more sensitive to the needs of children. Speech therapy for infants and toddlers may include assistance with feeding and swallowing issues or assistance in developing spoken communication. Preschool children may also receive therapy for assistance in learning basic skills and communicating their wants and needs. School-age children often receive speech therapy to correct articulation errors and improve language skills.

What areas are included in speech therapy services?

  • Articulation and Phonology
  • Receptive and Expressive Language
  • Feeding and Swallowing
  • Voice or Resonance
  • Pragmatics/Social Skills
  • Fluency/Stuttering
  • Augmentative and Alternative Communication

Speech-Language Pathologist’s also serve individuals with:

  • Apraxia of Speech
  • Auditory Processing Disorder
  • Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD)
  • Cochlear Implants
  • Learning Disorders
  • Cleft Lip or Cleft Palate
  • Neurological Disorders such as Cerebral Palsy
  • Syndromes such as Down Syndrome
  • Traumatic Brain Injury
  • Developmental Delay
  • Hearing Loss

Services

  • Speech and Language Evaluation

    Before receiving speech therapy, a full speech and language evaluation is needed. The purpose of the evaluation is to measure the child’s overall communication skills. An evaluation includes standardized testing, structured tasks, play-based tasks, clinical observation, and parental report. Specific assessments and tasks are selected based on the child’s chronological age. Before the evaluation, a case history form is needed to provide the Speech-Language Pathologist with background information on the child’s developmental, and medical history. The comprehensive evaluation is very important as the results determine the child’s needs. Evaluation results and a treatment plan will be discussed with the child’s parents prior to beginning therapy.

  • Individual Therapy

    Individual speech therapy is provided for children all of ages. Each session is an enjoyable learning experience focused on helping children develop skills to become effective communicators. Speech-Language Pathologists’ strive to:

    • Improve receptive and expressive language skills
    • Facilitate play skills
    • Improve production of sounds so your child can be understood
    • Improve oral motor strength for speech, eating and swallowing
    • Provide effective home programs for improving speech, language, feeding and swallowing
    • Provide beneficial augmentative communication devices to
      increase communication
    • Promote appropriate expression of feelings such as frustration, fear, happiness and anger
  • Group Therapy

    Group therapy may be recommended for many different reasons for children of all ages. One of the main reasons Speech-Language Pathologist’s recommend group therapy is to target pragmatic language or “social” language skills. Another reason is to help a child to generalize a speech or language skill that has been mastered in a one-on-one session.

  • School Based Services

    Our Speech-Language Pathologists travel to private schools in the area to target communication skills to help children succeed in the school environment. The Speech-Language Pathologists collaborate with teachers, and parents to provide the best therapy for the child.

  • What does it mean if your speech-language pathologist is certified by the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA)?

    “The Certificate of Clinical Competence of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association is a nationally recognized credential in the fields of Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology. For the former, applicants for ASHA certification must complete a program of study that includes academic course work and a minimum of 1,820 hours of supervised clinical course practicum. For the latter, applicants must complete 400 hours of supervised clinical experience, as well as 1,260 hours of a clinical fellowship. In the cases of both fields, applicants must have been supervised by holders of the ASHA Certificate of Clinical Competence. Additionally, applicants from both fields must have completed a master’s or doctoral degree from an accredited academic program, pass a national examination, and engage in 30 contact hours of continuous education every three years in order to earn and renew their ASHA certification.”

    ASHA Certified

  • What does CCC stand for?

    “The CCC stands for Certificate of Clinical Competence.  A professional’s name will appear with CCC-SLP to indicate an ASHA-certified speech-language pathologist, CCC-A when the individual is an ASHA-certified audiologist.”

    ASHA Certified