Communication Sciences and DisordersWestern Health Sciences

Clinical Placements

Placement

As part of their degree requirements, students in the School of Communication Sciences and Disorders participate in a wide range of clinical placements. Clinical settings include the H.A. Leeper Speech and Hearing Clinic, hospitals, schools, treatment centres, private practice locations and specialized clinics. Many of these settings offer students the opportunity to interact and collaborate with students and professionals from other disciplines.

Audiology Placements

Year 1

Students in Year 1 are assigned to a winter term clinical practicum placement at the H.A. Leeper Speech and Hearing Clinic consisting of two hours of clinical audiology per week. Supervisory conferences with clinical faculty will require another half- to one-hour session.
Students are assigned to an eight-week full-time placement in the summer term. This placement can occur in the H.A. Leeper Speech and Hearing Clinic or at an outside facility.

Year 2

Students in Year 2 are assigned to a fall term clinical practicum placement at the H.A. Leeper Speech and Hearing Clinic consisting of two hours of clinical audiology per week. An additional winter practicum may be assigned, if needed or requested by students with the agreement of the student’s academic supervisor or research supervisor and the clinical coordinator.

Students are assigned to an eight-week full-time placement in the summer term. This placement can occur in the H.A. Leeper Speech and Hearing Clinic or at an outside facility.

Students in the combined MClSc/PhD program will have a modified schedule of placements.

Speech-Language Pathology Placements

Year 1

Students in Year 1 are assigned to clinical practica at the H.A. Leeper Speech and Hearing Clinic during winter and spring terms. The placement normally consist of two to four hours of direct client contact per week. Supervisory conferences with clinical faculty and teaching clinics are included in the placement and can account for an additional one to two hours per week.

Students participate in the summer term in a variety of clinical areas either within or outside of the H.A. Leeper Speech and Hearing Clinic. These intensive placements can be up to 12 weeks in duration (12 week placements include the spring term).

Year 2

Students in Year 2 are assigned to clinical placements at the H.A. Leeper Speech and Hearing Clinic during the fall term. The placements normally consist of two to four hours of direct client contact per week. Supervisory conferences with clinical faculty and teaching clinics are included in the placement and can account for an additional ont to two hours per week.

Students are assigned to a winter term clinical practicum at an outside facility which is the equivalent of one full day per week over a 10- to 12-week period (i.e., 10 to 12 full days).

Students are assigned to an eight- to 12-week full-time summer externship placement. The length of this placement varies according to student need, facility need, and community placement availability.

Students in the combined MClSc/PhD program will have a modified schedule of placements.

Travel Opportunities (SLP)

Second year students in speech-language pathology have had the opportunity to apply to take part in several unique clinical placement initiatives each year. All of these placements are conducted within a social justice framework, working to serve under-privileged populations here in Canada and abroad. When students enter their second year, information and details regarding these placements and the application process will be shared with them. These are special clinical opportunities that are offered on a yearly basis, dependent on the availability of funding, clinical sites and clinical supervisors.

Northern Ontario Placement Initiative

This is a one-week mixed adult and pediatric placement that typically takes place mid-February (Reading Week) in several locations including Attawapiskat and Kashechewan in Northern Ontario.

  • Dependent on the availability of funding, clinical sites and clinical supervisors, this placement may not be offered each year.
  • This placement is partially funded, when it is offered.
  • Placement availability is communicated to students each year.

Peru Placement Initiative

This placement is completed over two weeks in Lima and Cuzco, Peru. Students work in a cleft lip and palate clinic, a school for the deaf, and a school for children with multiple needs (AAC and swallowing). 

  • Dependent on the availability of funding, clinical sites and clinical supervisors, this placement may not be offered each year.
  • This placement typically takes place in either July or August and is partially funded, when it is offered.
  • Placement availability is communicated to students each year.

South Africa Placement Initiative

Ths placement is available for two second year speech-language pathology students and provides the opportunity to participate in a clinical placement in Cape Town, South Africa. This placement typically takes place in either July or August for three weeks and includes a mixed caseload of adults at a rehabilitation hospital and children at a treatment centre.

  • Dependent on the availability of funding, clinical sites and clinical supervisors, this placement may not be offered each year.
  • This placement is partially funded, when it is offered.
  • Placement availability is communicated to students each year.

Placement Requirements

Immunizations and Vaccinations

Proof of meeting Mandatory Medical and Non-Medical Requirements must be demonstrated by September 30 of each academic year. Students should retain original copies of all documents as they will be required for participation in clinical placements.

Students completing a placement in a hospital setting between October 1 and March 31 will be asked to obtain a seasonal flu vaccination. These are available to students at no cost through student services. In the event of an influenza outbreak, students may be asked to leave the placement if they have not received the vaccination. Should a required placement be interrupted or discontinued, it may need to be repeated and the student may be unable to graduate with their class. Students who have a medical contraindication to receiving the vaccine should inform their placement contact at the outset of the placement.

N95 Mask Testing

Students are required to attend a mask fit clinic during their first year in the program. Students will be instructed in the proper fit and use of a mask and will receive a card that identifies the mask they require for adequate protection. Students must carry this card with them during the placement and be prepared to show it to placement personnel on request. Testing is arranged by the School of Communication Sciences and Disorders. Cost to the student is $20.00.

Criminal Records Check with Vulnerable Sector Screening (CRC-VSS)

In August, prior to entry into the program, and in each subsequent August, students will be required to complete a Criminal Record Check/Vulnerable Sector Screen (CRC-VSS). Students should apply for the CRC-VSS by July 1 of each academic year. Additional checks may be required to satisfy specific facility or jurisdictional requirements. Students may receive funding to offset the costs associated with completing these additional procedures.

These documents are necessary to complete academic and clinical placement requirements both in the H.A.Leeper Clinic and in the community. Students can obtain these checks through their local police department. Please specifically request a check that includes a VSS. Students can complete this process in their home location or in London if they have proof of a London residency. CRC-VSS procedures typically remain valid for one year following issue however some sites might require a CRC-VSS completed within the last six months. Students should allow 8-10 weeks for these checks to be completed.

Students are responsible for all costs associated with completing these procedures. You will be required to share your CRC-VSS directly with the placement site (H.A.Leeper Clinic or community agency). You should ensure return of the original document. Students unable to complete an academic or clinical requirement of their program because a facility refuses to accept them on the basis of the information contained in their record check might not be eligible for progression or graduation.

Interprofessional Health Education (IPHE) Series

As a way to facilitate skills to work in interprofessional teams, all clinical students in audiology and speech-language pathology are required to participate in the Elborn IPHE series as part of their clinical training. These IPHE sessions are approximately 90 – 120 minutes in length and involve working through case studies under the guidance of clinicians from the health disciplines (including audiology, occupational therapy, physiotherapy, and speech-language pathology).

The IPHE Series provides students with an opportunity to meet students from the other disciplines and to work with them on real issues faced by interprofessional teams in the community.