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re-training as a speech and language therapist?

(18 Posts)
downbythewater Sat 18-Aug-12 08:41:32

I am currently a TA at my DD's school. I like it but I'm not sure it's a long term career for me, although I love working with children.

Recently I have been considering maybe retraining as a speech and language therapist. My degree was in languages, and I have some experience of working with EAL students.

I wouldn't be able to afford it until my youngest is in school anyway- in 2 years time. By then I'd be 35, then I believe the training ia 2 years so I would be 37 starting a new career!

Does anyone have experience of this? Would I get onto a course with my degree? And what is the job market like? Or am I just too old to retrain??

TurncoatEwok Sat 18-Aug-12 09:05:43

What do you actually need to become qualified?

I did see a reference to being a SLT assistant which doesn't require the qualifications at the start, might that be an option?

It's something I've considered too, I've not finished my first degree yet (OU open degree) and am generally dithering...

CheddarsintheRunning Sat 18-Aug-12 09:13:33

Hi the degree is actually 3 or more years and the job market at the moment is horrendous. sad

However it could all be different in 3 years. I would think very carefully about this and find out about job prospects before you start the course.

In terms of getting on the course, languages should be fine but they will be more interested in your work experiences.

TurncoatEwok Sat 18-Aug-12 09:19:29

So, is it a first degree then? Or is there a conversion course like there is for some careers?

downbythewater Sat 18-Aug-12 09:21:07

Thanks for the replies, Cheddar I was hoping I could do the postgrad qualification as I already have a degree- the ones I looked at are 2 years?

Bad news about the job market though sad

Turncoat, I hadn't thought about looking into being a SLT assistant, that's a good idea!

Gooseysgirl Sat 18-Aug-12 09:34:44

Agree prospects not great at the moment with cutbacks, and also just to mention our SLTs seem to spend an inordinate amount of time on reports and record keeping (I work alongside them in learning support) so it's not all direct work with clients. Could you shadow one for a few days to see what the job fully entails?

OneOfMyTurnsComingOn Sat 18-Aug-12 09:35:56

I don't think it's ever been an easy job to get into. You very rarely see posts advertised. Please correct me if I'm wrong anyone.

MissMavishasbluehair Sat 18-Aug-12 09:44:02

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

thunksheadontable Sat 18-Aug-12 09:44:13

Don't do it! The profession is drowning in paperwork, you get very little time with kids in most jobs and with the limited frequency of contact there's hardly any evidence it works. Also it is really hard to get a job near home, I commute an hour each way and in ten years there have been no suitable jobs closer to home. Fine before kids but a nightmare now. Most jobs are being regraded so the salaries aren't great and will worsen. I would never go into it as it is now.

downbythewater Sat 18-Aug-12 09:57:02

Oh dear, I guess it's best to find out now! I am in London if that makes any difference re job opportunities?

Hmm maybe I should look into TA or LSA opportunities in the field instead...

CheddarsintheRunning Sat 18-Aug-12 10:05:16

As far as I know, you can only do the postgrad qualification if you have a relevant 1st degree so it all depends on that. I know of one girl who had a linguistics degree and still had to do the 3yr course.

The universities are reducing intake numbers at the moment but there are still far too many qualified therapists looking for work.

Tbh the NHS is not a good place to work at the moment and doesn't look like it's going to get better in the next few years. sad

Foshizzle Sat 18-Aug-12 10:48:39

My SIL retrained a couple of years ago and loves it. She did struggle to find work in the NHS and went into private practice which works well for her, hours wise. She mentioned that Surrey PCT advertise quite a lot for SALTs but salaries aren't great.

The postgrad qualification was full time for her and she struggled with childcare for that time, but considers it worth it now. She echoes the point about massive amounts of paperwork.

krisskross Sun 19-Aug-12 17:42:52

hi OP- i have also been considering this and went into the talk posts to actually post your post, if that makes sense.

city uni in london does a 2 year post grad and you need a relevant degree but it doesnt need to be science.

just wondering if anyone knows of postgrad courses that you can do part time?

i work in the nhs currently, but am wondering can anyone advise of voluntary work i could do for a couple of hours a week that would be useful grounding for this role, as i too would be in the position to apply in a couple of years.

has anyone done the city uni postgrad course? can you tell me what its like?


krisskross Mon 20-Aug-12 17:33:15

bumping for more advice pls

Lottapianos Mon 20-Aug-12 17:42:10

I'm a SLT and I'm afraid I agree with others about paperwork and jobs market. Defo recommend organising a day or two shadowing a therapist. Assistant jobs are slightly easier to come by but pay is really awful. Sorry to be such a neg head!

krisskross Mon 20-Aug-12 17:44:28

thanks- its good to hear the bad early on!

slothprincess Mon 27-Aug-12 14:58:20

krisskross, I'd recommend some voluntary work with the stroke association. They often run weekly groups for stroke survivors. Experience with children or adults with a learning disability would also be useful. Perhaps also helping in a school if you don't have experience working with children.

I'd agree the other posters that SLT assistants aren't well paid. I would say that although there is lots of paperwork, I absolutely love my job and would definately go into it again if I had my time over. (And I commute to work). However, the job market is completely rubbish at the moment and there are literally hardly any jobs out there for newly qualified therapists.

winterblossom Mon 08-Dec-14 07:19:16

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

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