Earning a speech pathologist degree is a step-by-step process which an aspiring Speech Pathologist must fulfill before he or she can wholly practice the profession. Aside from the academic requirements, the process also includes practical or on the job trainings. After earning the degree, one is required to take the licensure examination given by the governing state where he or she wishes to practice. License renewal on the other hand might necessitate one to take up units in continuing education, attend seminars, or undergo training.
It is good to note that to be able to become a certified Speech Pathologist, one must finish the following educational levels: secondary education, a four-year degree, and lastly a Master’s Program in Speech Pathologist degree.
Speech pathologist degree – courses and subjects
After earning a secondary school diploma, one must enroll in a four year degree. If possible, this degree must be relevant or related to Speech Pathology. Included among the most ideal courses are Biology, Health Sciences, Language or Linguistics, and Psychology. Upon finishing the four-year course, one can now choose among the many universities that offer Master’s Degree in Speech Pathology.
Entry into these programs can be quite competitive. Most schools would necessitate aspirants to submit credentials, reach the minimum required GPA, and present a letter of intent, as well as recommendation letters from individuals whom the applicant may have worked with in the past or knew personally. Upon admission in the graduate school, an aspiring Speech Pathologist will have to finish a two-year program tailored particularly for the field. Depending on the school or university where he or she is enrolled, the subjects usually vary. In general however, the most common courses included in the curriculum include: Language, Patient Evaluation, Age-Based Language Disorders, Counseling and Therapy, Specific Speech Disorders, Communication, Feeding Problems, and Patient-Therapist Relationship among others.
In addition to the courses mentioned above, Speech Pathologists are also required to partake in seminars and practicum. They may also be allowed to take electives of their choice.
Speech pathologist degree – universities
There’s a long list of universities that offers the degree of Speech Pathology. To name a few, there’s University of Iowa under their Department of Communication Sciences & Disorders, University of Wisconsin, MGH Institute of Health Professions, Florida State University, and many others. The Master’s Degrees in Speech Pathology in these schools are offered as programs under various departments such as the Department of Language and Communications, Department of Psychology, or through their Nursing and Medical Programs.
The main advantage of being enrolled in a school or university-based Speech pathology program is that one can focus on his or her academics through the guidance of professors who themselves are experts in the fields. Through the classroom setup, learning is maximized.
Speech pathologist degree – online school
Another option for those who are planning to get into the program is to look for online schools or organizations that offer the degree. An example of this would be one offered by CSUN’s College of Health and Human Development as well as the University of Wisconsin where one can study and finish the program on a more flexible schedule. However, unlike school or classroom-based programs, online programs often take three years to complete rather than the usual two years. While the time is extended, this set up is more practical for those who intend to maintain jobs while taking their Master’s Degree.