Helpful Definition for: Speech Therapy
Speech therapy, the treatment for speech and/or language disorders such as stuttering, trouble with articulation, problems with vocal resonance, and difficulty in processing/understanding language, is practiced by professionals known as speech-language pathologists (SLPs). SLPs have studied human communication and its disorders, and must hold at least a master's degree along with a state license or certification and a Certificate of Clinical Competence from the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA). SLPs provide services to remediate both receptive (processing language) and expressive (using language) disorders, with the goal of enhancing communication skills and, along with them, self-esteem. Speech therapy is often indicated in cases of hearing impairment, cognitive delay, birth defects, autism and oral or respiratory problems. Remediation for children may take place one-on-one with the SLP, in small groups, or even in a classroom setting.