Corresponding Author Information: Cynthia McCormick Richburg, PhD, Indiana University of Pennsylvania, Department of Special Education and Clinical Services, 570 S. Eleventh St. Davis Hall-203, Indiana, PA 15705, (office) 724-357-5680, (fax) 724-357-7716.
Purpose: A goal of this 36-item survey was to determine if school-based Speech-Language Pathologists (SLPs) have access to the services of an audiologist and if they felt they obtained benefit from the audiologist's services. Additional goals included gathering information about SLP's understanding of basic audiological concepts typical for a school setting, added job responsibilities brought about by lack of access to an audiologist, and collaboration between these professionals.
Method: A survey was emailed to 1000 SLPs listed with ASHA as employed in schools. Two-hundred and nine respondents from 42 states returned the survey.
Results: Seventy-six percent of the surveyed SLPs had access at some time to an educational/contractual audiologist, with 88% of them believing they received benefit from the services provided by that audiologist. Although many SLPs who had access to an audiologist reported receiving benefit from that audiologist primarily in the areas of hearing screenings and in-services, 38 SLPs (58%) who did not have access to an audiologist reported having additional job responsibilities.
Conclusions: Many school-based SLPs believed they received benefit from an audiologist when they had access to one. Collaboration between these professionals was strong, yet findings indicate that audiologists could improve collaborative efforts with SLPs and assist them in working within their scope of practice and maintaining ethical standards.
KEY WORDS: collaboration, benefit, speech-language pathologists, audiologists, scope of practice, training programs