Speech-Language Pathology
What is Speech-Language
Pathology (S-LP)?
Speech-language pathology is the study of disorders that
affect a person's speech, language, cognitive, voice, and/or
swallowing abilities. Speech-language pathologists (S-LPs)
manage people's speech production, vocal production,
swallowing difficulties, and language needs throughout the
entire life span. S-LPs work with agencies providing service
to children and adults such as daycares and hospitals.
Speech and language pathology is the rehabilitative
treatment of difficulties with communication and/or
swallowing resulting from physical, cognitive, and/or
undetermined deficits/disorders.
What Do S-LPs Do?
•S-LPs assess and treat a broad range of speech, language,
voice, swallowing, and cognitive-communication
impairments, such as:
- Articulation difficulties
- Aphasia
- Cleft lip and palate
- Developmental language disorders
- Dementia
- Resonance disorders (e.g. cleft palate)
- Speech disorders (e.g. Parkinson's disease)
- Stuttering
- Swallowing
- Traumatic brain injury
- Voice disorders
•S-LPs develop and carry out treatment programs designed
to facilitate speech and language development or recovery,
and to restore or improve communication efficiency.
•They provide counseling and guidance for individuals with
speech and language impairments, their families, and
•They work collaboratively with other professionals including
educational and allied health professionals.
Practice Settings:
Speech-language pathologists work in private
practice, child development centers,
preschools, schools, hospitals, rehabilitation
centers, government agencies, health units,
industry, colleges, universities, and research
centers throughout the world. They are often
part of teams, including physicians,
psychologists, social workers, nurses,
teachers, occupational therapists, physical
therapists, and counselors.
Education & Preparation
Qualified Speech-Language Pathologists have:
• Graduated from an accredited university
program with a two or three year Master’s level
degree in Speech-Language Pathology. S-LPs
have training in Communication Sciences and
Disorders. The professional program involves
academic study as well as related practical
•Requirements for professional certification
necessary for clinical practice are set by the
national professional association. The
Canadian Association of Speech-Language
Pathologists and Audiologists (CASLPA) holds
an annual examination for those wishing to
qualify for national certification.
•Several provinces that are mandated by the
Regulated Health Professions Act require
licensure and registration by provincial
S-LP - How It Works
Professional Associations
•S-LPs use a wide variety of specialized tools and procedures
to assess speech, language, and swallowing function.
The Ontario Association of Speech Language
Pathologists and Audiologists website:
•They develop and participate in programs and on teams that
provide consultative and direct treatment services.
College of Audiologists and Speech-Language
Pathologists of Ontario website: www.caslpo.com
•They are responsible for counseling of clients and families
and for appropriate referral to other professionals.
Canadian Association of Speech-Language
Pathologists and
(CASLPA) website: www.caslpa.ca
•They are also committed to ongoing research, public
education, and training of new S-LPs.

Speech-Language Pathology