Career and Education Opportunities for Speech and Language Teachers in Grand Rapids, Michigan
There is a wide variety of career and education opportunities for speech and language teachers in the Grand Rapids, Michigan area. About 3,530 people are currently employed as speech and language teachers in Michigan. By 2016, this is expected to grow 7% to about 3,760 people employed. This is not quite as good as the national trend for speech and language teachers, which sees this job pool growing by about 18.5% over the next eight years. In general, speech and language teachers assess and treat persons with speech, language, and fluency disorders.
A person working as a speech and language teacher can expect to earn about $33 per hour or $69,840 yearly on average in Michigan and about $30 hourly or $62,930 yearly on average in the U.S. as a whole. Speech and language teachers earn more than people working in the category of Alternative and Specialized generally in Michigan and more than people in the Alternative and Specialized category nationally. Speech and language teachers work in a variety of jobs, including: clinical instructor, voice pathologist, and communication specialist.
The Grand Rapids area is home to nineteen schools of higher education, including one within twenty-five miles of Grand Rapids where you can get a degree as a speech and language teacher. The most common level of education for speech and language teachers is a Master's degree. It will take about six years to learn to be a speech and language teacher if you already have a high school diploma, or just 2 years starting with a Bachelor's degree.
CAREER DESCRIPTION: Speech and Language Teacher
In general, speech and language teachers assess and treat persons with speech, language, and fluency disorders. They also may select alternative communication systems and teach their use.
Speech and language teachers administer hearing or speech and language evaluations, tests, or examinations to patients to collect data on type and degree of impairments, using written and oral tests and special instruments. They also write reports and maintain proper documentation of data, such as client Medicaid and billing records and caseload efforts, including the initial evaluation and discharge of clients. Equally important, speech and language teachers have to educate patients and family members about various topics. They are often called upon to monitor patients' progress and adjust treatments accordingly. They are expected to design and implement treatment plans for problems such as stuttering and inappropriate pitch or harsh voice problems, on the basis of own assessments and recommendations of physicians or social staff. Finally, speech and language teachers use computer applications to pinpoint and assist with communication disabilities.
Every day, speech and language teachers are expected to be able to understand what others are saying to them even in a noisy environment. They need to articulate ideas and problems. It is also important that they listen to and understand others in meetings.
It is important for speech and language teachers to design speech exercise programs to decrease disabilities. They are often called upon to layout and employ alternative diagnostic or communication devices and strategies. They also design individual or group efforts and programs in schools to deal with behavior or swallowing problems. They are sometimes expected to supervise and collaborate with therapy team. Somewhat less frequently, speech and language teachers are also expected to furnish communication instruction to dialect speakers or students with limited English proficiency.
Speech and language teachers sometimes are asked to conduct or direct research on speech or hearing topics, and report findings for use in developing procedures or treatments. They also have to be able to teach clients to control or strengthen tongue, jaw and breathing mechanisms and complete administrative responsibilities, such as coordinating paperwork, scheduling case management efforts, or writing lesson plans. And finally, they sometimes have to administer hearing or speech and language evaluations, tests, or examinations to patients to collect data on type and degree of impairments, using written and oral tests and special instruments.
Like many other jobs, speech and language teachers must have exceptional integrity and have a strong concern for others.
Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Grand Rapids include:
- Occupational Therapist. Assess, plan, organize, and participate in rehabilitative programs that help restore vocational, homemaking, and daily living skills, as well as general independence, to disabled persons.
- Physical Therapist. Assess, plan, organize, and participate in rehabilitative programs that improve mobility, relieve pain, and decrease or prevent deformity of patients suffering from disease or injury.
- Recreational Therapist. Plan, direct, or coordinate medically-approved recreation programs for patients in hospitals, nursing homes, or other institutions. Activities include sports, trips, and arts and crafts. May assess a patient condition and recommend appropriate recreational activity.
EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Speech and Language Teacher Training
Calvin College - Grand Rapids, MI
Calvin College, 3201 Burton SE, Grand Rapids, MI 49546. Calvin College is a small college located in Grand Rapids, Michigan. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 4,171 students and an admission rate of 94%. Calvin College has a bachelor's degree program in Speech-Language Pathology/Pathologist which graduated three students in 2008.
Occupational Hearing Conservationist: The Occupational Hearing Conservationist (OHC; also known as an industrial audiometric technician) can, with supervision, conduct the practice of hearing conservation including pure-tone air-conduction hearing testing and associated duties (related to knowledge gained as described in Section II below).
For more information, see the Council for Accreditation in Occupational Hearing Conservation website.
LOCATION INFORMATION: Grand Rapids, Michigan
Grand Rapids is located in Kent County, Michigan. It has a population of over 193,396, which has shrunk by 2.2% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in Grand Rapids, 81, is well below the national average. New single-family homes in Grand Rapids cost $98,700 on average, which is far less than the state average. In 2008, forty-three new homes were built in Grand Rapids, down from ninety-two the previous year.
The three most popular industries for women in Grand Rapids are health care, educational services, and accommodation and food services. For men, it is construction, transportation equipment, and educational services. The average travel time to work is about 19 minutes. More than 23.8% of Grand Rapids residents have a bachelor's degree, which is lower than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 8.0%, is lower than the state average.
The unemployment rate in Grand Rapids is 15.4%, which is greater than Michigan's average of 14.3%.
The percentage of Grand Rapids residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 52.9%, is more than both the national and state average. Church of Jesus Christ, Immanuel Church and Trinity Church are among the churches located in Grand Rapids. The most prominent religious groups are the Catholic Church, the Christian Reformed Church in North America and the Reformed Church in America.
Grand Rapids is home to the Kent Country Club and the Walker Juvenile Court as well as Comstock Riverside Park and Richmond Park. Visitors to Grand Rapids can choose from Hampton Inn Grand Rapids, Hampton Inn Grand Rapids/North- Mi and Hampton Inn Fax for temporary stays in the area.