It’s Time to Write Speech Therapy Goals
You have completed your evaluation and it’s time to write your report. You are sitting in an office/portable/corner of the library. The crescendo of a familiar concert is getting louder–assessment results, deadline dates and professional judgement are all playing their song. Now, it’s time to commit and write speech therapy goals and objectives.
4 Tips to Write Speech Therapy Goals that Rock
So, where do you start?
- Keep the timeline in mind. Remember, we write speech therapy goals to be mastered in a certain amount of time. For those in home health and clinics, goals typically need to be mastered in 3-6 months. Lack of mastery conveys that efforts were not productive, and reauthorization of speech therapy is denied. For those working in the schools, you need mastery by the end of the IEP-year. Continuing the same goals would show that your efforts have not been successful. So, this is permission to not select goals for all weakness demonstrated on the evaluation. Refine your efforts.
- Determine Mutual Goals. Before choosing goals, find out what is important to the family. Within a school setting, find out what skills would be valuable for the classroom teacher. Then, look at your assessment results. With input from the child’s VIPs, you will be addressing the most meaningful communication needs. For adult clients, get their input and priorities, as well.
- Measure It. How do you know when the goal/objective has been mastered? Is it a percentage (%) or trials (7/10 opportunities or across time (e.g, 5/5 story grammar components across 3 consecutive sessions)?
- Address Functional Goals. What is considered functional? These are the skills that are needed daily across settings (e.g., school, home, community). Remember, an assessment may say that the child is unable to use a verb in present progressive form; however, that does not mean that it’s the most functional goal to address. If the 4-year-old is typically using nouns to label common objects, then working on noun and verb combinations would yield more meaningful outcomes across the child’s day.
SLPs, you’ve definitely got the right stuff to write great goals. We’ve been around this block a few times, and we have skills. Now, you can enjoy your concert of speech and language progress. Do you hear that sound? It’s the roar of your fellow SLPs cheering you on and on on.
And if you don’t want to write speech therapy goals yourself, know that we have done it for you in Spanish and English. Click on the image to check it out.