I know what it’s like to be desperate to work or study in another country as an SLP. You spend hours of time Googling for someone to tell you the answer… and most times you DON’T get that answer.
When I moved from Australia to the United States in 2011, there was not much out there. Facebook groups wasn’t a thing. No one was on Instagram. And the only thing that you might find was a thread on a random site.
FIRST STEP: know the MRA
If the country that you live in is part of the Mutual Recognition Agreement (MRA) then lucky you! There is some pretty straightforward information out there.
The MRA is an agreement signed by the associations for Australia, America, Canada, Ireland, the UK and New Zealand. In basic terms, the agreement recognises that if you have full membership in your own country, then you might be able to work in another country listed in the agreement.
But here’s the catch: You might have to provide or undertake extra requirements such as taking exams, obtaining specific certifications, meeting a dysphagia competency or having a certain amount of clinical hours under your belt. You won’t know until you do the reading specific to the country where you obtained your degree and compare it you where ou want to go.
COUNTRIES IN THE MRA
If you are not sure where to start and want a quick comparison guide, Speech Pathology Australia have a nice summary and list for all of the countries. Otherwise, click on the country that you WANT to work in below:
- USA: ASHA doe a great job at listing a variety of documents if you want to work in America. Just be aware that you most likely have to apply for state licensure as well.
- AUSTRALIA: If you want to work as an SLP in Australia (and why wouldn’t you?!) then click here to read about the Overseas Qualification Assessment.
- CANADA: The website for Canada mentions that there will be some new process, so make sure that you check back periodically to have the most up-to-date information.? T
- REPUBLIC OF IRELAND: The webpage for working in Ireland has some documents that you are able to download and read.
- UNITED KINGDOM: I’ve studied in the UK and loved my time there. This link is a search on the RCSLT page, and has information for SLPs who are MRA and non-MRA.
- NEW ZEALAND: The website for New Zealand isn’t as comprehensive as some of the other associations, but you should find the information you’ll need.
When you make the decision to pack your bags and work overseas you will inevitably be playing the Visa Game. Applications. Fees. Processing time. Licenses. Photocopies… lots of photocopies. So before you set your heart on working in a specific country, do a little research first about how easy it is to get a visa.
Do I have the answers? No. Sorry. These things change all the time.
There is an AMAZING Facebook Group called SLPs Going Abroad – go join it! There are SLPs who are most likely working where you want to go and can answer the questions you need.
Read my post ‘Working Overseas: Where to Begin’ to give you some ideas of the steps to take to get the ball rolling.
If you want information about other countries, visit my SLP Associations From Around the World page and look through the countries and perhaps try contacting yourself to see the requirements. There are pros and cons from choosing an association part of or not part of the MRA, so do your research and see what suits you.
** Please note that I will be unable to answer further questions on this page. If you dod not find any answers, try the Facebook group that I mentioned above 🙂 **