“I stuttered severely for 35 years. Today, I have been recovered for 20 years”
– Mark Power, Stuttering Specialist | Founder, Power Stuttering Center
What is a Stuttering Specialist?
All licensed speech pathologists are permitted to treat stuttering. The problem is that most of them have little or no training in stuttering. Learn more about the difference between a Board Certified, Stuttering Specialist or Fluency Specialist, compared to non-specialist, but licensed, speech pathologists that frequently treat people who stutter.
Furthermore, about ten years ago the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association removed all of the requirements for University classes and supervised training clinic hours in stuttering therapy. Graduate schools complained that they weren’t able to find enough stutterers for their clinics. Or professors to teach the stuttering classes. As a result, a student can graduate and obtain a license in Speech Pathology without any classes or training in stuttering.
Studies have shown that the majority of speech pathologists feel uncomfortable assessing and treating children who stutter. They feel inadequately prepared when they see a child who stutters.
There is hope…
At about this same time, a few members of the American Speech-Language and Hearing Association and I decided to start a Special Interest Division in Fluency and Fluency Disorders. So, after several years, they devised a Specialization Program. In addition, this program required advanced training and experience in stuttering. Mentors certified successful candidates as Board Certified Specialists in Fluency (BCS-F).
There are now about 160 Board Certified Specialists in the United States. I was a member is this initial cadre that devised the standards for specialization. I became a Board Certified Stuttering Specialist in 2001.
Not only am I a Board Certified Stuttering Specialist and Fluency Specialist, but I limit my practice to treating only adults and teens who stutter.
Therefore will be reviewing the difference between a Board Certified Stuttering Specialist or Fluency Specialist, and all licensed speech pathologists.
What is a Board Certified Stuttering Specialist
Board Certified Specialists in Fluency are individuals who hold the Certificate of Clinical Competence (CCC) This is awarded by the American Speech Language Hearing Association. Therefore, they have demonstrated a high level of knowledge and clinical expertise in diagnosing and treating individuals with fluency disorders.
As a result, they are labled BCS-F – Board Certified Specialist – Fluency. Standards for Certification, approved by the Council For Clinical Certification of the American Speech Language Hearing Association, must be met in order to apply for Specialty Certification in Fluency. The American Board of Fluency and Fluency Disorders reviews candidates knowledge and clinical abilities in order to become a specialist.
What are Speech Pathologists
Speech-language Pathology is a field of expertise practiced by a clinician known as a speech-language pathologist (SLP). They are also called speech and language therapist, or speech therapist. They specialize in the evaluation, diagnosis, and treatment of a variety of communication disorders. These include articulation disorders, language disorders, voice disorders, and swallowing disorders.
So as it stands now, speech pathology students can graduate and obtain a license in Speech Pathology without any training in stuttering or even any classes in stuttering. And yet, all are permitted, because they are licensed, to treat those with stuttering problems.
Get in Touch with a Stuttering Specialist!
So If you have questions about stuttering, want a Free Consultation by Phone (15 minutes) or wish to make an appointment for yourself or your child please get in touch with me at the Power Stuttering Center.
Power Stuttering Therapy – Director
Fluency Coordinator – Los Angeles County Office of Education
Adjunct Faculty – California State University, Long Beach
ASHA Board Certified Specialist in Fluency (BCS-F) – American Board of Fluency and Fluency Disorders
* CEU Provider – California Department of Consumer Affairs
June 1993: Stuttering Foundation of America Conference, Long Beach, CA – Stuttering Therapy: Practical Ideas for the School Clinician
March 1995: California Speech Hearing Association Annual Conference, San Diego,
CA – Short Course – The Stutter-Free Speech Program: A Training Model Using Role-play and Guided Practice
May 1997: American Speech-Language-Hearing-Association – Special Interest Division Fluency and Fluency Disorders Annual Conference, Tucson, AZ Fluency Outcome in the Public Schools
August 1997: International Fluency Association – 2nd World Congress, San Francisco, CA – A Training Model Demonstrating Guided Practice for the Stutter-Free Speech Program
August 1999: “Tahoe Time” Speech and Audiology Conference, Lake Tahoe, NV
February 2001: California State University, Fullerton 3rd Annual Fluency Conference
July 2001: American Speech-Language-Hearing Association – Fluency Boot Camp, Boston, MA
February 2002: Orange Unified School District, Orange, CA Stutter-Free Speech Workshop
March 2002: California Speech Hearing Association – Annual Conference, Los Angeles,
CA – Seminar – Principles of Fluency Shaping
July 2004: Fluency Specialist Conference – Portland, Oregon – Stuttering Workshop
December 2006: Widex, Hong Kong – 2 Day Workshop – Stutter-Free Speech Program
March 2008: North Island SELPA, San Marcos, CA – Stutter-Free Speech Program
January 2010: Widex, Hong Kong, Stutter-Free Speech for Chinese Speech Pathologists
March 2013: California Speech Hearing Association – Annual Conference, Long Beach,
CA – Seminar – Fluency Shaping – Hands-on workshop
April 2016: California Speech Hearing Association – Annual Conference, Anaheim,
CA – MPI Stuttering Treatment Program
Consultant to the following:
School districts, Hospitals, and Private Practices:
- Capistrano Unified School District, CA
- Saddleback Unified School District. CA
- Tustin Unified School District, CA
- Orange Unified School District, CA
- Long Beach Unified School District, CA
- Los Angeles County Office of Education, CA
- Pomona Unified School District, CA
- Glendale Unified School District, CA
- Burbank Unified School District, CA
- San Francisco Unified School District, CA
- Stanislaus SELPA/Modesto City Schools, CA
- Springfield School District, Springfield, MA
- Deaconess Waltham Hospital, Waltham, MA
- Coachella Valley Unified School District
Mark, once a severe stutterer himself, is dedicated to providing effective stuttering treatment to all people who stutter.
Mark presents “hands-on” training workshops on stuttering therapy techniques to many school districts, hospitals and practices in California, in the United States and internationally. Furthermore, he has been on the faculty of the Communicative Disorders Department at California State University, Long Beach. He was the Fluency Coordinator for the Los Angeles County Office of Education. Mark maintains a private practice in Orange County, California treating adults and children who stutter.