Speech Pathology Week 2018

In 2018, Speech Pathology Week is 19-25 August.

Speech Pathology Week seeks to promote the speech pathology profession and the work done by speech pathologists with the more than 1.1 million Australians who have a communication or swallowing disorder that impacts on their daily life.

Communication is a basic human right and Speech Pathology Week seeks to promote this fact.


The theme for Speech Pathology Week in 2018 is: Communication access is communication for all!

This theme draws on aspirations from the Speech Pathology 2030 project. The theme reinforces the important role that speech pathologists play in the lives of Australians with speech and swallowing difficulties.

Campaign Kits

Orders for the Speech Pathology Week Campaign Kit are now open

  Order a Speech Pathology Week Kit now!  


As in previous years the kit contains collateral to promote Speech Pathology Week including flyers, poster, wristbands, etc.

Kits will be delivered in the first week of August. The cost of the campaign kit in 2018 is $10, which includes postage and handling.

Other collateral material will be available for downloading from this web page.

Videos: the stories of #SPWeek in 2017

Olga and Margot – Speech pathologist Olga Birchall and Margot (85 years) explain what communication access means in real life.

Watch this video about the Victorian Electoral Commission and communication access.Victorian Electoral Commission - Sue Lang, the Director of Communication and Engagement at the Victorian Electoral Commission explains how communication access is making the voting experience easier for some voters.

Watch the video of Bethany and John discuss the challenges of communication access for someone with Parkinson's disease.Bethany and John - Speech pathologist Bethany Hanley and John discuss the challenges of communication access when your voice starts to fail you due to Parkinson's disease.

Watch the video of Elizabeth and Kim discuss the communication challenges for Kim's son.Elizabeth and Kim - Speech pathologist Elizabeth Lea and Kim talk about communication challenges faced by Kim's son and why communication access is so important.

Allana and Graeme - Speech pathologist Allana Bowen and Graeme talk about Graeme's communication skills and challenges following cancer of the larynx.

Annie and Larelle - Speech pathologist Annie O'Connor and Larelle explain how Larelle recovered from her stroke and rediscovered her voice and the power of speech.

Sue, Kelli and Eden - Speech pathologist Sue Cameron and Kelli (mother of Eden) discuss telehealth and how distance is no barrier to the services of a speech pathologists.

Tips for successful communication*

  • Always treat the person with the communication disability with dignity and respect
  • Be welcoming and friendly
  • Understand there are many ways to communicate
  • Ask the person with the disability what will help with communication
  • Avoid loud locations, find a quiet place
  • Listen carefully
  • When you don’t understand, let them know you are having difficulty understanding
  • If you think the person has not understood, repeat what you have said or say it a different way
  • Try asking the person yes or no questions if you are having difficulty understanding them
  • Ask the person to repeat or try another approach if you don’t understand
  • To make sure you are understood, check with the person that you have understood them correctly
  • If you ask a question, wait for the person to reply
  • Allow the person time to respond, so always be patient
  • Speak directly to the person and make eye contact. (Though be mindful that there are some people who may not want you to look at them, e.g. some people with autism spectrum disorder)
  • Speak normally. There is no need for you to raise your voice or slow your speech.

*Source: Adapted from SCOPE, Communication for All Booklet, http://www.scopeaust.org.au

Speech Pathology Week in past years

For information about Speech Pathology Week in past years contact the Association.