How do I become a speech and language therapist?

In the UK the title speech therapist is protected, therefore you must complete a registered, accredited degree level course in order to be able to practice as a speech therapist.

The degree level courses can be completed at either undergraduate (BSc Hons) level or postgraduate (PG Dip or MSc) level. The main differences and requirements for each are:

  • Undergraduate (BSc) – requires A level passes in various subjects which are set by the individual universities but generally Maths, Languages (incl English), Psychology, or Sciences are accepted. The take between 3-4 years to complete depending on the university chosen and will allow you to practice as a speech therapist upon graduation (following HCPC registration)
  • Postgraduate (PG Dip or MSc) – requires a previous degree qualification in a related subject (check with the individual universities) usually a science, language or psychology degree. The applicant normally is required to have achieved a grade no lower than 2:1 in their previous degree to be accepted. These courses usually take between 2-3 years to complete and again allow you to practice as a speech therapist upon graduation (following HCPC registration)

If you are unsure which route is best for you do contact the individual universities who will be happy to talk through your options.

You can access our careers booklet which explains the different degree routes in more detail and has a list of all 18 universities in the UK that are accredited to offer these courses, along with more information through our website here.

See our career in speech and language therapy section for further information.

You can contact UCAS via their website who for general advice on entry qualifications.

Below are some more useful links with further information regarding becoming a speech therapist -

Where can I study speech therapy?

View a list of universities who have had their speech and language therapy programmes approved by the Health and Care Professions Council (the HCPC) and accredited by the Royal College of Speech and Language Therapists (the RCSLT).

Are there any vocational routes into becoming a speech therapist?

The RCSLT is supporting the development of apprenticeships in order to provide potentially new routes for assistants and others into speech and language therapy. For more information please see our website here -


What are speech and language therapists paid?

Speech therapists pay scales depend on the setting they work in and the level or grade they are working at. Information on NHS pay scales can be found here.

How do I become a speech therapy assistant?

There are no specific qualifications that you are required to complete in order to become a speech therapy assistant or support worker, this is due to the fact that most of the training is completed on the job. That being said most employers do look for a good levels (GCSE level) in English and Maths.

Below are a number of links which talk about what is involved in becoming a therapy support worker and how you go about applying for roles etc.

Speech and language therapy support worker FAQ

Assistants support workers

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