Speech and hearing impairments are two related topics. There are various kinds of speech impairments like slurring of speech, vocal dysphonia, etc. Hearing impairments implies full or partial disability in hearing. People who are born deaf are usually also mute as they cannot hear and nor can they speak. Treating these defects in human beings needs some specialization. The Speech Therapy Courses in India are offered in selected institutions where they train individuals to be speech therapists and audiologists. These branches of study come under the paramedical courses.

Speech therapists are specialists who treat people facing problems related to speech disorders. They helps the people having speech and language problems and who are lacking in fluency. Speech therapists are also called speech-language pathologists (SLPs) and speech pathologists.

The institutions offering speech therapy courses in India provide the students with detailed knowledge about the various speech and hearing impairments. They even provide practical training in treating and handling individuals with these impairments.

Courses and Duration

Diploma/Certificate Courses:

  • Diploma in Hearing, Language & Speech (DHLS) – 1 yr
  • Diploma in Hearing Aid and Earmould Technology (DHAET)
  • Post Graduate Certificate Course in Auditory Verbal Therapy (PGCAVT) – 6 months

Bachelor Courses:

  • B.Sc in Speech and Hearing – 3 years
  • Bachelor of Audiology & Speech Language Pathology (BASLP) – 4 yrs

Master Courses – 2 years

  • Master of Audiology & Speech-Language Pathology (MASLP)
  • M.Sc in Speech and Language Therapy
  • M.Sc in Audiology
  • M.Sc in Speech-Language Pathology

Doctoral Courses:

  • Ph.D. (Audiology)
  • Ph.D. (Speech-Language Pathology)

Eligibility

Students can take admission in bachelor courses after clearing higher secondary examination in PCB group from a well-recognized educational board with 55% marks. To purse postgraduate programme, one must have passed the bachelor degree in the related field.

 Skills Required:

  • Scientific Aptitude
  • Strong Interpersonal Skills
  • Good Communication Skills
  • Compassionate nature
  • Keen observation skills
  • Ability to work effectively in teams

Admission Process

Most of the colleges admit students to bachelor and master courses on the basis of an entrance test which is a NEET 2019. Many institutions/Universities conduct their own entrance test for offering admissions like All India Institute of Medical Sciences, Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education & Research, Jawaharlal Institute Postgraduate Medical Education & Research (JIPMER 2019) and many others. Admission process varies from college to college. Some institutions provide admission based on the marks students scored in the qualifying examination.

Entrance Examinations

  • AIIMS UG (All India Institute of Medical Sciences) Under Graduate Entrance Exam
  • PGIMER UG Entrance Exam
  • NEET UG (National Eligibility cum Entrance Test) Under Graduate Entrance Exam
  • JIPMERUG Entrance Exam
  • Manipal University Entrance Exam
  • GGSIPU UG Entrance Exam

Career Prospects

Postgraduate in audiology & speech-language pathology can work as lecturers in medical colleges. Graduates in audiology and speech-language pathology can practice in hospitals in the department of ENT, pediatrics, neurology, rehabilitation medicine, speech and hearing centers, hearing aid industry, child guidance center, etc. They can also practice as independent audiologists.

Those have a doctoral degree in the above field can be a part of human resource development at different training & research centers.

Diploma holders can assist audiologists and speech-language pathologists in schools of hearing impairment, mental retardation etc.

Speech therapists are also required in the reputed hospital like All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS). After acquiring a degree in a relevant field, a speech therapist can also open their own clinic.

Most of the speech therapists work in public schools. You may either work on healthcare setups like at hospitals or work at NGOs, nursing homes. You can also work on your own rehabilitation and private practice setups.

Job titles for the professionals working in the speech therapy field:

  • General audiology or speech pathology assistants
  • Speech therapists
  • Research assistants
  • Clinical speech pathology assistants
  • Audiologists
  • Speech pathology service manager
  • Educational audiologist
  • Certified hearing-aid audiologist
  • Research audiologist

Job Areas:

  • Health Care Institutions
  • Government Agencies
  • Government Health Departments
  • Hospitals
  • Nursing Care Facilities
  • Rehabilitation Centres
  • Private Practice
  • Academic Universities
  • Hearing aid/cochlear implant industries
  • Medical Hospitals/Clinics
  • Special Schools

Salary

In India, Speech therapist earns the salary of around Rs. 2.5 to 3 lacs per annum. With the years of experience, salary increases. Private hospitals offer better salary as compared to a government hospital. Your remuneration will depend upon job title and organization you are working for.

In abroad, the earnings of speech therapist ranges from $52,000 to $80,000 per annum.