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Speech and Language therapist

2nd July 2019

To be a good speech and language therapist you need to have…

  • qualities such as empathy, assertiveness, tact, a sense of humour and physical and mental stamina
  • excellent communication and listening skills, to relate to people of all ages and backgrounds, motivate clients and gain trust
  • patience, as progress may be slow – involving repetitive exercises to aid clients who have problems memorising, processing and retaining information
  • creativity and problem-solving skills, to design programmes appropriate for different learning styles and communication issues

If you’re thinking of a career as a speech and language therapist…

To practise as a speech and language therapist (SLT), you must be registered with the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC). To register with the HCPC, you first need to successfully complete an approved degree. For a list of approved undergraduate and postgraduate courses see the Royal College of Speech and Language Therapists (RCSLT).

If you’ve got a degree in a relevant subject such as psychology, social sciences, linguistics or a medical science you can take an accelerated two-year postgraduate course in order to qualify.

Entry without a degree is possible at speech and language therapy assistant practitioner level, working with qualified SLTs. You will receive training on the job and may have the opportunity to take an S/NVQ or BTEC qualification or a healthcare apprenticeship.

Other useful links

Health careers – speech and language therapist

Association of Speech and Language therapists in Independent practice

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