What Are the Best Tips for Becoming a Speech Therapist?

Tara Barnett
Tara Barnett
Woman with hand on her hip
Woman with hand on her hip

The best tip for becoming a speech therapist is to obtain the best credentials possible as well as additional experience working in the field before looking for clients. Many professionals of this type work with children, and having experience in an educational setting or working specifically with youth can provide a competitive edge. People who go into speech therapy must be personable and capable of providing encouragement with problems that can be embarrassing or frustrating, so developing interpersonal skills is useful as well. Being creative and innovative is key to having an edge over others when becoming a speech therapist.

Becoming a speech therapist depends firstly and most importantly on having the right credentials for the job. The precise education needed for this profession is different depending on the area, but post-graduate work is almost always required. Most people find that a prestigious education is useful in the workforce, but individual initiative during school is impressive as well. Making the most out of the best school a person can get into is the best way to be competitive even before leaving school.

There are other strategies that will help a person become a superlative speech therapist as well. For example, taking care to gain experience with the group a person aims to work with can be very valuable. Volunteering with children, people who stutter, or other common groups who need speech therapy is a great step toward becoming a speech therapist. Connecting with these people in a personal way can make for great anecdotes when looking for jobs.

Interpersonal skills are key when becoming a speech therapist, and if someone does not already have these skills, they must be developed. It is possible to take classes specifically on communication and effective leadership, but another great way to obtain these skills is simply to practice. Whenever possible, a person should take the opportunity to teach, guide, and lead. Being an excellent motivator is often highly visible to others and may be something featured on recommendations later along someone's career path.

In addition to merely being qualified, becoming a speech therapist is much easier if someone remains an expert in the field. Understanding a variety of perspectives and being capable of treating a person using different methods can be very valuable if a person's usual strategy should fail. Having multiple approaches and being able to explain why treatment is necessary at an appropriate level can be helpful when dealing with difficult students. Even when someone has already succeeded in becoming a speech therapist, he or she can always improve his or her skills and become a better professional.

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