Speech and language therapists assess, diagnose and treat people with communication difficulties. Communication difficulties include problems with speech, with understanding and using language, fluency, voice and with the social uses of language. Speech and language therapists also help people with swallowing and feeding difficulties.
Speech and language therapists work in a variety of settings, such as hospitals, community clinics, schools, nursing homes and peoples' homes. They take on a variety of roles; direct management, advice to parents, training of care staff, running groups, providing resources and information and acting as advocates for people with communication difficulties. Therapists often work in multi-disciplinary teams.
Here are some examples of Speech and Language Therapists’ work
- Working with a child in the clinic to produce age-appropriate speech
- Running group sessions in a hospital for a group of people whose communication has been affected by a stroke
- Helping a young actor who develops a hoarse voice while working in the theatre
- Giving advice on feeding to parents of a child with a cleft palate
- Devising programmes for a classroom assistant to carry out with a child with a specific language disorder
- In a rehabilitation hospital, assessing the swallowing ability of a young woman who has been involved in a road traffic accident
- Working as part of a multi-disciplinary team (e.g. physiotherapist, paediatrician, psychologist, social worker) to produce a care plan for a young child with cerebral palsy who is attending a nursery
- Training nursing staff on a dementia ward to maximise possibilities for conversation with patients
- Working with a teenager who stammers
Our MSc in Speech and Language (Professional Qualification) is accredited by the Irish Association of Speech and Language Therapists.