What is speech-language pathology?

Speech-language pathologists and Communicative Disorders Assistants (CDAs) use a variety of techniques to improve a child’s ability to communicate.

Speech-language therapy helps children improve their communication skills; it is a team approach. The therapist takes them step by step toward their goal, such as helping them to use basic speech, improving their articulation, gaining better understanding or improving their conversation skills.

What does an assessment look like?

Many factors can interfere with a child’s ability to speak, including physiological difficulties, hearing problems, cognitive and neurological challenges, and genetic disorders.

The therapist will use an evidence-based approach to assess your child’s areas of need, some may include:

  • Caregiver interview
  • Direct Observation
  • Standardized Assessment
  • Consultation with other care providers

From there, the therapist will provide recommendations, discuss goals and a treatment plan. The treatment plan can include direct treatment by the therapist, home activities and, in some cases, treatment by another discipline (e.g., behaviour therapy, occupational therapy).

Speech-language pathologists can work with a child in the clinic, virtually, in home or when appropriate in school.

Who can benefit from speech therapy?

Speech-language difficulties can show up in many forms. Speech-related difficulties can include concerns about not speaking at all, stuttering, pronunciation or voice. Language-related difficulties can include concerns about vocabulary, grammar, comprehension discourse and social-emotional expression. Children of all abilities are welcome to access services at CSS.

  • Apraxia of speech
  • Autism Spectrum Disorder
  • Hearing impairment
  • Reading or writing difficulties
  • Global Developmental Delay
  • Difficulties with pronunciation
  • Stuttering
  • Trisomy 21
  • Acquired Brain Injury

Signs that your child might benefit:

  • Difficulty communicating needs unable to communicate basic needs, frustration
  • Not easily understood- poor pronunciation, articulation difficulty, stuttering or word finding difficulty
  • Language delaydifficulty understanding spoken and written language
  • Social communication – difficulty engaging with peers, poor social communication, and difficulty interacting with peers
  • Organization – difficulty problem solving, memory, lacks organizational skills to communicate properly

Our team has additional training in the following areas:

  • Hanen Approach
  • Kaufman Speech to Language Protocol
  • AAC – including sign language and PECs
  • The Lidcombe Program for Stuttering
  • LAMP
  • Social Thinking

Further reading

Online Speech-Language Pathology now available

Your child can participate in 1:1 therapy, live with their therapist from a computer or tablet. You will have unprecedented access to your child’s therapy and progress. It is suitable and effective for a wide range of challenges.

Learn more