Over the past years the population has changed in Denmark and Sweden, meaning an increased group of people are speaking other native languages than Danish and Swedish. In Denmark 10% and in Sweden 19.6% are born in other countries and hence are like to have other mother tongues. Some of these people will need assistance from speech and language therapists (SLTs) as well, which lead to new challenges and demands.
The aim of this study is to create an overview of SLTs’ education and practice related to assessment, treatment and counselling of people with speech and language difficulties with a cultural and linguistic diverse background.
A survey was sent out to speech and language therapists in Denmark and Sweden via personal contacts, social media and professional unions. The questions related to following themes: demography, education, assessment, intervention, counselling, and challenges when working with people with a cultural and linguistic diverse background. 205 speech and language therapists from both countries filled in the survey. We are now in the analyzing process based on these answers.
The product of the study contributes to further understanding of speech and language therapists’ knowledge and education regarding linguistic and cultural diversity. It teaches us about their practice when working with people with a cultural and linguistic diverse background. Our findings can lead to better ways for the speech and language therapist education. Our results may also cause ideas on how to improve the assessment, treatment and counselling of people with a linguistic and cultural diverse background.
Jytte Isaksen, PhD and lecturerMaja Sigurd Pilesjö, PhD, SLT and lecturer