Questions To Ask Speech Therapist

What to look for in a speech therapist will depend on the personality and needs of your child. Below, I outline key questions to ask a speech therapist before you start any therapy program.

These questions apply more to private practice, hospitals, and clinics than schools. Within the school system (early intervention, early childhood, and school), you may have less choice. 

questions to ask speech therapist

1. Logistics

First things first, consider all the logistics. These simple considerations can make or break a therapy program. 

  • Location: Pick a therapist that lives in your area. Make sure it is convenient to get there. There will be fewer cancellations on your part.
  • Money: Are you going to pay out of pocket? What are the fees? Does your insurance cover anything? Check with your insurance first!!
  • Hours of Operation: What are the speech therapist’s hours? Do they work for you? 
  • Cancellation Policy: Cancellations happen. Read the policy and be comfortable with it. However, don’t plan on cancelling too much. How will your child improve?!

2. Credentials

It is important to ask questions about the speech therapist’s credentials and experience such as:

  • Are you ASHA (American Speech-Language-Hearing Association) certified? 
  • Are you licensed?
  • How many years of experience do you have?
  • What ages and disorders have you worked with?
  • Do you have any areas of expertise?
  • Most important: What is your therapy’s philosophy? 

3. Private or Public?

Investigate options in your area. Start at your pediatrician’s office and/or your local public school. Word of mouth is a powerful tool too!

  • Benefits of private clinics: You have more control. You can pick your time, place, and therapist. Parent involvement is prioritized.
  • Cons of private clinics: Expensive. Insurance doesn’t always cover services
  • Benefits of schools: Services are free. Goals relate more to school curriculum. Many professionals are on your child’s team.
  • Cons of schools: You have less control over who is your child‘s therapist. It is harder to qualify for services. Your child may be seen in larger groups for less amount of time.

Consider these factors and ask around before deciding, but don’t wait too long. You can always change your plan!

4. Parent Involvement

Speech therapy is changing for the better. Research now shows how crucial parent involvement and daily practices are for progress. Below are questions to ask a speech therapist regarding this:

If your child is under 5 years old:

  • How are sessions run? 
  • Is there a home program? What does it comprise?
  • How frequently do I receive progress reports?
  • May I watch sessions? 
  • May I be in the room so I can learn techniques to practice at home?

If your child is over 5 years old:

  • How frequently do I receive progress reports?
  • Are you willing to regularly contact my child’s teacher to collaborate on progress and goals?
  • How often are goals updated?
  • How do you measure progress and need for further assessment?
  • May I watch sessions? 
  • May I be in the room so I can learn techniques to practice at home?

5. Last considerations

Remember, you, the parent, will do most of the therapy at home. Find a speech therapist who will teach you EASY techniques for working with your child at home.

Be comfortable with the speech-language pathologist. Make sure you feel comfortable expressing your needs, worries, and concerns. Communication between therapist and parent is IMPORTANT!!

Write down questions to ask the speech therapist before you go.

Go with your gut. You are the expert on your child. Don’t forget that!

Further Questions...

Email or contact us with any further questions. We are happy to help!! 

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