Advice for working with PWS

Hi! I am a graduate student,  and I am interested in working with people who stutter. I am interested in the counseling and psychological aspects of stuttering as well. What is your biggest piece of advice for working with this population?

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Advice for working with PWS — 1 Comment

  1. Hello! Thank you for asking a question to the professional panel. This is a very broad question, but I will give you some advice regarding counseling and scope of practice. The counseling aspect of speech-language pathology and stuttering therapy can be highly intimidating for SLPs because they oftentimes don’t know where to draw the line: what is within our scope of practice? The American-Speech Hearing Association, for example, does state that counseling is within our scope of practice SPECIFICALLY when it comes to servicing swallowing and communication disorders. Given that wording, and what we learn in the classroom, are we then prepared to counsel? Graduate students typically now have some kind of “Intro to Counseling in Speech-Language Pathology” textbook… usually just one if that, in their stack of grad school books, but is one book (if there is one book in that stack, my stack didn’t have such a book in it) enough to prepare us? Our scope of practice is to counsel regarding what involves communication in the case of individuals who stutter. Anything beyond what involves communication is out of our scope of practice. We are now taught some basic counseling techniques in some stuttering/cluttering SLP texts which is very nice, to help individuals who stutter with covert aspects like communication confidence, for example, so that’s very helpful. However, your inner monologue as a clinician is your friend and if you ever question yourself to say “is this within my scope of practice and beyond “communication” counseling, then it more than likely is and the individual may need a referral if they would like a referral. I hope that helps you some!I think that the SLP field is just tapping in to how important counseling truly is to stuttering therapy and that we are going to be seeing a lot more psychology course requirements or even a counseling course requirement in our future to better prepare us for counseling in all diagnosis that we treat, as one textbook for an “Intro to Counseling in Speech Pathology” or no textbook on counseling at all isn’t cutting it. 🙂

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