1. Home: Explore careers
  2. Speech and language therapist

Speech and language therapist

Alternative titles for this job include

Speech and language therapists help people with speaking and communication problems and those with eating and swallowing difficulties.

Average salary (a year)

£28,000 Starter

to

£50,000 Experienced

Typical hours (a week)

38 to 40 a week

You could work

between 8am and 6pm

How to become

Explore the different ways to get into this role.

How to become Speech and language therapist

You can get into this job through:

  • a university course
  • an apprenticeship

University

You'll need a degree in speech and language therapy approved by the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) and the Royal College of Speech and Language Therapists (RCSLT).

If you've got a relevant degree, you could do a 2-year fast-track postgraduate course in speech and language therapy.

You may be able to get extra student financial support through the NHS Learning Support Fund.

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • 2 to 3 A levels, or equivalent, for a degree
  • a degree in a relevant subject for postgraduate study

More Information

Apprenticeship

You may be able to do a Speech and Language Therapist Level 6 Degree Apprenticeship.

The apprenticeship will take around 4 years to complete.

If you already have a relevant degree it may be shorter and you may be able to get a master's qualification as part of the apprenticeship.

If you are working as a speech and language therapy assistant you might be able to apply to do the degree apprenticeship with your current employer. You would need to meet all their entry requirements for the apprenticeship.

The Royal College of Speech and Language Therapists (RCSLT) has more information on this apprenticeship.

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • 4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C) and A levels, or equivalent, for a degree apprenticeship

More Information

Volunteering

You'll find it helpful to get some paid or voluntary experience in a healthcare setting before you apply for a course.

You can also find volunteering opportunities through The National Council for Voluntary Organisations and Do IT.

More Information

Registration

Career tips

You'll be expected to show an understanding of the NHS values when applying for degree courses and apprenticeships.

Further information

You can find out more about becoming a speech and language therapist from:

What it takes

Find out what skills you’ll use in this role.

What it takes

Skills and knowledge

You'll need:

  • knowledge of English language
  • sensitivity and understanding
  • the ability to work well with others
  • to be flexible and open to change
  • counselling skills including active listening and a non-judgemental approach
  • to be thorough and pay attention to detail
  • knowledge of psychology
  • excellent verbal communication skills
  • to be able to use a computer and the main software packages competently

Restrictions and Requirements

You'll need to:

For some roles you'll need to visit clients in their homes, so you'll need a driving licence.

What you’ll do

Discover the day to day tasks you’ll do in this role.

What you'll do

Day-to-day tasks

As a speech and language therapist, you could:

  • observe and test patients to assess specific difficulties
  • plan and develop therapy programmes
  • help patients regain communication after brain injuries or a stroke
  • support children and adults with eating or swallowing problems
  • work with children with language delays or disorders

Working environment

You could work at a school, in an NHS or private hospital, at a health centre, in a nursery or at a client's home.

Your working environment may be emotionally demanding.

Career path and progression

Look at progression in this role and similar opportunities.

Career path and progression

With experience, you could specialise in working with:

  • children with special educational needs
  • people who have eating, drinking and swallowing disorders (dysphagia)

After further training, you could move into teaching and research. You could also become self-employed and run your own business.

Current opportunities

Find apprenticeships, courses and jobs available near you.

Current opportunities

Apprenticeships In England

We can't find any apprenticeship vacancies in England for a Speech and language therapist right now.

The Find an apprenticeship service can help you with your search, send alerts when new apprenticeships become available and has advice on how to apply.

Courses In England

Access to HE: Health Science Professions

  • Provider: HULL COLLEGE
  • Start date: 03 September 2024
  • Location: Hull

Access To HE - Health Science Professions - Online (Distance Learning)

  • Provider: BOURNEMOUTH AND POOLE COLLEGE, THE
  • Start date: 02 September 2024
  • Location: Not known

Jobs In the United Kingdom

The Find a job service can help you with your search for jobs and send alerts when new jobs become available.

Skills assessment

Take an assessment to learn more about your skills and the careers that might suit you.

Is this page useful?

Yes No

Thank you for your feedback.

Thank you for your feedback. Click here if you'd like to let us know how we can improve the service.