How much does a speech pathologist make? Speech pathologists (aka speech-language pathologist or speech therapist) earn a good to excellent salary for their highly skilled services. Speech pathologists assess, diagnose, help to prevent disorders related to and treat individuals with language, cognitive-communication, voice, speech, swallowing, and fluency disorders. Speech pathologists may use alternative communication systems and teach their use to clients.
Speech pathologists work with individuals whose have speech rhythm and fluency problems, such as stuttering; cannot produce speech sounds or cannot produce them clearly; clients with problems understanding and producing language; people who have swallowing difficulties; and clients with cognitive communication impairments, such as memory, attention, and problem-solving disorders.
Speech Pathologist Job Duties:
Evaluate hearing and speech/language test results and medical or background information to diagnose and plan treatment for speech, language, fluency, voice, and swallowing disorders.
Administer hearing or speech/language evaluations, tests, or examinations to patients to collect information on type and degree of impairments, using written and oral tests and special instruments.
Record information on the initial evaluation, treatment, progress, and discharge of clients.
Develop and implement treatment plans for problems such as stuttering, delayed language, swallowing disorders, and inappropriate pitch or harsh voice problems, based on own assessments and recommendations of physicians, psychologists, and social workers.
Design, develop, and employ alternative diagnostic or communication devices and strategies.
Monitor patients' progress and adjust treatments accordingly.
Develop speech exercise programs to reduce disabilities.
Instruct clients in techniques for more effective communication, including sign language, lip reading, and voice improvement.
Teach clients to control or strengthen tongue, jaw, face muscles, and breathing mechanisms.
Develop individual or group programs in schools to deal with speech or language problems.
Conduct lessons and direct educational or therapeutic games to assist teachers dealing with speech problems.
Instruct patients and family members in strategies to cope with or avoid communication-related misunderstandings.
Consult with and advise educators or medical staff on speech or hearing topics such as communication strategies and speech and language stimulation.
Communicate with non-speaking students, using sign language or computer technology.
Refer clients to additional medical or educational services if needed.
Provide communication instruction to dialect speakers or students with limited English proficiency.
Participate in conferences or training, or publish research results, to share knowledge of new hearing or speech disorder treatment methods or technologies.
Conduct or direct research on speech or hearing topics, and report findings for use in developing procedures, technologies, or treatments.
Use computer applications to identify and assist with communication disabilities.
Speech pathologists require a master's degree in speech-language pathology as the standard educational requirement. The majority of states regulate speech pathologists with licensing requirements varied per state. Aproximately 48 percent of speech pathologists worked in educational services while most others were employed by social assistance and healthcare facilities.
Speech-language pathologist positions will grow by 19 percent from 2008 to 2018, faster than the average for all occupations. As members of the baby-boom generation age, the population of elderly grows, along with the possibility of neurological disorders and associated language, speech, and swallowing impairments increases.
How much does a speech pathologist make per hour?
A May 2009 Bureau of Labor Statistics report shows the median hourly wages for speech pathologists was $32.86.
Industry And Hourly Wages
Elementary and Secondary Schools $30.22
Offices of Other Health Practitioners $35.96
General Medical and Surgical Hospitals $34.63
Nursing Care Facilities $38.70
Home Health Care Services $42.22
How much does a speech pathologist make per year?
The median yearly salary for speech pathologists according to a May 2009 Bureau of Labor Statistics report was $68,350.
Industry And Annual Wages
Elementary and Secondary Schools $62,860
Offices of Other Health Practitioners $74,810
General Medical and Surgical Hospitals $72,030
Nursing Care Facilities $80,500
Home Health Care Services $87,820