A speech therapist is a professional who aids people who are suffering from varied kinds of speech defects. In this following article we will learn a little something more about this profession and the earning prospects of the same.
A speech therapist works individually or with hospitals or schools, and aids people who have language and speech defects. It is a type of medical job that requires great expertise and provides for a wide range of career opportunities. That is why a speech therapist salary range is also seen to be quite high. Let us learn a little more about the tasks that a speech therapist performs and the salary that he earns.
Speech Therapist Job Description
Here are some of the duties that a speech therapist performs.
- Speech therapists are more popularly known as speech pathologists or speech language pathologists.
- Their main task is to handle all the speech related disorders that people might face.
- They administer certain speech exercises for people who have problems in producing certain sounds, or people who stammer and have a fluency problem, or for people who have problems with speech rhythms.
- They also treat patients who have had paralysis and cerebral palsy strokes which has then resulted in the speech defect.
- Along with that, they also help people who have swallowing problems and those who want to modify their accents.
- For this they need to learn the type of disorder that a patient suffers from as well as the extent of it. Then decide about the kind of speech therapy exercises for the treatment that should be provided, and the way in which speech defects can be prevented.
- Speech therapists work closely with psychologists, physiotherapists, doctors, and teachers.
- They devise several games and activities which involve therapeutic games and other related exercises, which are then included in the school syllabus.
Average Salary Range
The average salary of a speech therapist is about US$ 40,000 to US$ 102,000 per annum. A great many other factors determine the salary and it is seen to change according to the field of work, the location of the work, the setting (urban or rural), the education derived and the years of experience.
The starting salary of a speech therapist is about US$ 35,000 – $ 40, 000 but as the years progress and more years of experience gathered, the salary rises as well. With an addition in the years of experience, the salary range will keep increasing. A therapist with a 5 – 9 years of experience will get about US$ 70,000, while one who has 20 years plus experience will get about US$ 102,000.
A speech therapist works in several fields. The education field, it is seen, has a maximum need for the speech therapist and that is where they are hired most. In this field, their average salary is about US$ 45,000 – US$ 80,500. In the hospital industry, a speech therapist can earn a maximum of US$ 70,000 and in the rehabilitation area, the average salary is about US$ 75,500.
A master of Science degree seems to be a highly preferred degree and can help a professional earn an approximate sum of US$ 51,000. New York, Texas, California, Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Florida are the places that pay the maximum amount of salary to the therapists as compared to other places in the USA.
Many speech therapists even work on consultation basis while they have a private practice of their own. If they are associated with many hospitals and schools/colleges then the salary they will earn from each one of these places will also count in increasing the salary.
Disclaimer: These figures are subject to change depending on varied factors that have been mentioned above. Furthermore, the figures will undergo a change with shift in economic trends as well. These figures are provided to give you a basic idea of the salary range.
Of the several factors that you consider when starting out on a profession, the salary range for jobs, is no doubt one of the most important among them. Along with considering the salary factor though, it also goes without saying that the profession of a speech therapist is a highly noble one that lends hope to patients with speech impediments. In fact, a speech therapist helps a person adapt in society by helping him/her gain confidence and face social situations with ease. And now that you know what a speech therapist does and what his salary range is like, I hope it will help you make an informed choice.