How do Speech and Language Therapy Students form preferences regarding their future career in Speech and Language Therapy?
Cardiff Metropolitan University
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Background: Future career decisions of speech and language therapy (SLT) students have not been explored in relation to the client groups, settings and geographical locations students have a preference to work in. These preferences could potentially impact on future recruitment and retention of SLTs to the profession. This study investigated what client groups, settings and geographical locations SLT students’ had a preference to work in, and how these preferences had been formed. Aims: This study aims to investigate which client groups, settings and geographical locations SLT students want to work with and why they have those preferences. Methods & Procedures: A total of 18 questionnaires were completed by final year undergraduate SLT Students. The questionnaires were transcribed verbatim and coded using NVivo. Qualitative data and Quantitative data was analysed using grounded theory to produce emerging themes of how preferences were formed, with descriptive statistics to support. Outcomes & Results: External and Internal factors influenced SLT students’ preferences for client groups, settings and geographical location. External factors included previous experiences, clinical placements, academics, discussion with others, NHS benefits, links to the RCSLT and job availability. Internal factors included job enjoyment, personal qualities, ethos, family, emotions, support and quality of life. Conclusions: These data suggests that SLT students’ preferences are formed by external and internal factors that result in a person-job fit. These preferences develop over time through experience and personal values.
B.Sc. (Hons) Speech and Language Therapy
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