Factors contributing to the brain drain in speech-language pathology: A New Zealand example.

06:00 EST 9th March 2011 | BioPortfolio

Summary of "Factors contributing to the brain drain in speech-language pathology: A New Zealand example."

The aim of this research was to determine what attracts students to speech-language pathology (SLP), and the influence of intrinsic and extrinsic factors on two types of "brain drain" in
emigration and career shift. Fifty undergraduate students and 13 recent graduates completed a questionnaire that tapped three main areas, level of student debt, intentions to emigrate, and career intentions. Ninety-seven per cent of respondents were female, with a median age of 25 years. Most SLP students and graduates had high levels of debt on graduation. Debt contributed to levels of worry and the ability to participate in education. However, debt alone did not influence career choice or long-term career planning. Over half of the respondents intended to leave New Zealand within 2 years of graduation, citing salary, travel, and training opportunities as factors. Incentives to remain in the profession included increased salary, more training opportunities, and student debt repayment. SLP students' career decisions were mainly influenced by interest in the profession. The conclusion was that three main factors need to be explored in an effort to increase the likelihood that SLPs remain in New Zealand: salary levels, increased training opportunities, and contributions to reduce student debt.


University of Canterbury, Canterbury, New Zealand.

Journal Details

This article was published in the following journal.

Name: International journal of speech-language pathology
ISSN: 1754-9515


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