Speech Language Pathology is concerned with issues surrounding speech and language communication disorders. School-based clinicians typically work with the following types of communication disorders which interfere with a student’s ability to be successful in the general education classroom:
- Articulation disorders or disorders which make it difficult for students to produce sounds in syllables or say words incorrectly to the point that other people can't understand what's being said.
- Fluency disorders including stuttering (the condition in which the flow of speech is interrupted by abnormal stoppages, repetitions, or prolonging sounds and syllables).
- Receptive language disorders limiting the understanding or processing of language.
- Expressive language disorders including difficulty using facial expressions, gestures, intentionality, vocabulary, semantics (word/sentence meaning), morphology, and syntax (grammar rules).
- Pragmatic language disorders that impair social communication in our daily interactions with others. They include what we say, how we say it, our body language and whether it is appropriate to the given situation.
Depending on the nature and severity of the disorder, common treatments may include exercises, instructive or repetitive practice and drilling, the use of assistive technology aids, and introduction of strategies to facilitate functional communication. Speech language therapy may also include the use of picture symbols or Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) devices.