The field of Speech-Language Pathology involves the identification, assessment, and treatment of a wide variety of communication disorders (congenital, developmental, and acquired) in both children and adults. Such disorders may include phonological (articulation), language, voice, fluency (stuttering), and hearing problems. Speech-Language Pathologists also participate in the assessment and management of clients with swallowing difficulties. Speech-Language Pathologists work in various locations, including hospitals, schools, rehabilitation centres, community health centres, universities, skilled care facilities, and private practice.
The wide varieties of disorders and treatment approach pertinent to our field require a working knowledge of neuroanatomy, behavioural science, speech/language development, effective teaching strategies, motivating people, and excellent communication skills. Therapists with a bachelor's degree can perform essential duties in some settings, but a master's degree is essential for achieving professional independence, and some duties demand a doctoral degree. This degree program contains both academic and clinical components. It is a two-year program if students have an undergraduate degree in CSD and a three-year program if the undergraduate degree is in another area.
Our graduate students and senior-level undergraduate students gain experience providing speech and hearing services in the campus-based AAMU Speech and Hearing Clinic and externship sites across the state. The AAMU Clinic is a teaching clinic and has been serving the public since the late 1960s. Students complete a minimum of 400 clinical clock hours supervised by ASHA certified, Alabama-licensed faculty members and external supervisors. Our clinic serves clients of all ages from within the community as well as the University campus.
Speech-Language Pathologists work in various locations, including hospitals, schools, rehabilitation centres, community health centres, universities, skilled care facilities, and private practice.