Speech Language Pathology Assistant

Speech Language Pathology Assistant

The Certificate of Completion (CCL) and Associate in Applied Science (AAS) in Speech-Language Pathology Assistant programs are designed to provide comprehensive academic and practical education and training for Speech-Language Pathology Assistants. The CCL program is designed for students who already have a degree in another area or field and only need to complete the SLPA coursework.

The program provides training in working with speech and language disordered adults and children, including bilingual populations. The program content is based upon the recommendations of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA) and the Arizona State Licensure Statute for Speech Language Pathology Assistants.

In addition to work in the classroom, the program provides students with the opportunity to gain practical experience in working with clients/patients in a variety of settings under the direction and supervision of an ASHA certified speech-language pathologist.

The role of an SLPA is to assist, not replace, the Speech Language Pathologist (SLP).  The SLPA will perform tasks as prescribed, directed, and supervised by ASHA-certified SLPs.  The program is designed to train someone in these tasks which include assisting with informal documentation, following documented treatment plans, documenting patient/client performance, assisting with clerical duties, assist with departmental operations such as scheduling and record keeping, and collecting data for monitoring quality improvement.

The curriculum provides training in therapy techniques for the areas of articulation, phonology, receptive, expressive, and pragmatic language as well as behavior management, ethics, and clinical documentation.  SLPA’s will participate in observations and clinical practicum designed to provide hands on experience in carrying out the tasks learned within the courses.

Why Speech Language Pathology @ EMCC?

The EMCC SLPA program is the ONLY program in the state of Arizona that offer both the AAS and CCL programs which have all components needed to meet Arizona Licensure requirements.

The EMCC SLPA program has a variety of adjunct faculty teaching the courses. The curriculum is the same within all sections of the courses offered to ensure course content is the same for each course, no matter who the instructor of record is each semester.

This program is part of the Teacher Education Institute at EMCC, which helps students succeed by offering educational networks and professional opportunities within their selected field(s) of study.

Career and Employment Outlook
  • In Arizona, SLPA’s are typically employed within school settings serving multiple populations including preschool, elementary, middle school, and high school students.  They also work within other settings including clinics, rehabilitation facilities, home based settings, skilled nursing facilities, and hospitals.
  • Students will gain background knowledge that can be used in related fields such as regular education, special education, psychology, social work, habilitation, rehabilitation, occupational therapy, physical therapy, and speech language pathology.  The SLPA program is not designed to be a pathway into the undergraduate and graduate programs for communication disorders as it is a separate training specialty area.  Some of the classes may transfer to universities as electives but they do not typically substitute for courses to receive a degree in speech-language pathology.
  • For those interested in pursuing upper level undergraduate and graduate degrees in communication disorders, it can be helpful to work as an SLPA due to the related nature of the field.  Potential students interested in the upper level degrees should discuss their academic pathway with the EMCC advisor and program director.
Additional Info


To participate in these observations and practicums, some locations require you to have a fingerprint clearance card prior to starting in your practicum setting. So please apply early because it can take up to eight weeks for your card to arrive. To begin the process, contact the Arizona Department of Public Safety at (602) 223-2279 to request a packet. If you have questions or need additional information regarding the packet, they have FAQ's on their website http://www.azdps.gov/services/fingerprint/.

You will receive an application when you apply to volunteer at your practicum location.

Transfer Options

Maricopa Degree Options

At EMCC, get a degree in... And transfer to a university to get a degree in...
Associate in Applied Science (AS) Bachelor of Applied Science