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Clinical Archives of Communication Disorders > Volume 8(3); 2023 > Article
Biju, Kalaiah, and Shastri: Factors that Influenced Lndian Wtudents to Choose the Career of Audiology and Speech Language Pathology: A Questionnaire Based Study

Abstract

Purpose

Studies have identified various aspects that influenced the career choice among Audiology and Speech Language Pathology (ASLP) students/professionals in different countries. The factors influencing the choice of career as an ASLP in the Indian context have not been explored. If the predisposing aspects are identified, action can be taken to motivate the prospective students to become an ASLP. Hence, the present study aimed to identify the factors that influenced Indian students to choose ASLP as an option for higher education.

Methods

A 20-item questionnaire was developed, validated, and distributed via emails/social media platforms to students pursuing ASLP. A total of 380 undergraduate ASLP students studying at various Speech and Hearing colleges in India responded to the questionnaire.

Results

Chi-square association between few demographic details and factors were checked with ASLP as first career choice. Results of the study showed that the participants who had not applied to any other program, had the desire to work in a helping profession, had an experience with an individual with communication disorder, and had an influence from the academic curriculum had a greater chance of having ASLP as the first career choice.

Conclusion

Findings of the present study showed similarities and differences in the factors that influence choosing career of ASLP among students in India in comparison to other countries. This study also identified the key factors that could promote the career of ASLP in India, to improve its visibility to young college aspirants. The need for a career counselling is implied by the findings of this investigation.

INTRODUCTION

In India, the audiology and speech language pathology (ASLP) programme was started in 1965. Graduates with a 4-year bachelor’s degree in speech and hearing science can practice as independent professionals in India. A bachelor’s program typically includes audiology and speech language pathology and can practice as an audiologist, speech language pathologist, or both. In addition, master’s programmes exist, including both audiology and speech language pathology or include one of the specializations [1]. The Indian Speech and Hearing Association (ISHA), having over 4,000 members, is India’s professional and scientific association of speech and hearing professionals [2]. The Rehabilitation Council of India (RCI) is the regulatory body that regulates the training and professional practice [3].
Hearing impairment and speech-language disabilities are significant social and health issues in India [1,4]. According to NSSO [4], the percentage of persons with hearing disability and speech and language disability is 0.3 and 0.2 respectively. World Health Organization (WHO, 2004) reports that only about 3 percent of those in need of hearing care have access to them in developing countries. It is estimated that 6,000 to 7,000 audiology professionals are currently practicing here [1]. Paucity of qualified speech language pathologists (SLP) in India has also been observed [5]. A study reported that around 30% of their participants with Parkinsons’s disease who wanted speech therapy had difficulty finding a SLP in a metropolitan city of India [6]. In this scenario, the lack of SLPs in other parts of the country can be visualized. A low supply versus demand ratio of approximately one ASLP professional available for 32,000 individuals with communication disorder is reported [5]. Furthermore, there is a high percentage of ASLPs who move abroad for work or higher education, which adds to the disproportion of professionals versus indivduals requiring ASLP services [5,6]. Shortgage of ASLPs can result in service delivery done by unqualified and/or uncertified individuals [7]. The mandate of Right to Persons with Disabilities Act (2016) by the Government of India emphasizes the rights to avail professional services. However, the government is unable to provide services beyond district levels because of shortage of trained ASLPs [8]. Thus, there is a need to enhance human resources to cater to persons with speech, language, and hearing disabilities.
To establish an effective means to attract the students to audiology and speech language pathology, the factors that influence a student’s choice of profession and graduate program have to be identified. Numerous factors influence higher education and career choices, encompassing personal and social dimensions, which involve influences from one’s own family and peers, education, work possibilities, and other external factors related to social, political, economic, and cultural issues. All these factors continually act upon an individual, influencing and being influenced by the human vocational journey [9]. In addition, academic performance, aspirations, gender, and cultural background can also influence career choice [10].
Studies conducted in different countries have attempted to investigate the factors influencing the career choice of ASLP students/professionals. Most of these studies have included students and/or professionals in ASLP [9,1116], but Rockwood and Madison [17] also included a group of prospective ASLP students. Furthermore, Patterson and Woodward [18] included ASLP program applicants and students who were yet to decide their career. The number of ASLP students/professionals who participanted in these studies ranged from 16 [13] to 474 [16]. The majority of the studies [9,12,1418] used questionnaire based survey method to collect the data while Boyd and Hewlett [11] used both interview and questionnaire method, and Byrne [13] conducted only in-depth interview of the participants.
Summarizing the results of the above mentioned studies, the influential factors can be broadly categorized into personal, educational, and employment influences. Under personal factors, four factors were identified as important aspects which influenced the career choice of the ASLP students. First, aspiration to work in a helping profession was a significant factor influencing the choice of an ASLP student [12,1618]. Second, wanting to work with people was also an essential factor in making a career choice [11,15,18]. Third, studies have likewise emphasized the impact of parents and family in decision-making for professionals and students in ASLP [9,1214]. Fourth, a student with a professional or social contact with an ASLP or having a relative who was a speech and language therapy client had more chances of choosing ASLP as a career option [11,13,16].
In educational influences, two factors were identified as significant reasons for ASLP career selection. First was the interest in subject areas relevant to speech pathology [13] and second, candidate/vacancy ratio [9]. Three aspects under employment influences had a significant role to play in ASLP career selection: job availability [17], opportunity to earn a high salary and career advancement [18], job security, and professional autonomy [19]. Across studies, it was noticed that personal influences are more significant than educational and employment influences in choosing ASLP as a career.
Thus, from the literature it was noted that different studies have identified various aspects that influenced the career choice among ASLP students/professionals in different countries. The factors influencing the choice of career as an ASLP in the Indian context have not been explored. If the predisposing aspects are identified, action can be taken to motivate the prospective students to become an ASLP. Hence, the present study aimed to identify the key factors that influenced the undergraduate (UG) students’ career choice as ASLP in India. This research was intended to be exploratory in nature.

METHODS

The study was initiated after obtaining the necessary approval from the Institutional Ethics Committee. A questionnaire was developed and validated to meet the aim and objectives of this study.

Participants

This suvery was intenteded to be completed by UG students of ASLP program in India. The study’s purpose and informed consent were included in the online platform before starting with the questionnaire. Those participants who agreed to participate in the study proceeded to fill the questionnaire. Based on the results of the pilot study on 20 participants, 80% power, and 95% confidence interval, the sample size required for the present study was calculated as 350. A total of 380 UG students enrolled in ASLP programs in various institutions across India served as participants. These participants were spread across four years of the program. The mean age of the participants was 20.20 years (SD=1.63). A majority of the participants were females (85.79%). Participants who hailed from an urban background were slightly more (54.21%) than those who came from a rural background (45.79%). Distribution of the participants in each year of the UG program, gender and location background of home (urban/rural) is provided in Table 1.

Materials

The final questionnaire used in the study is provided as the supplementary material (S1). Brief description of the questionnaire is provided here. First, demographic details of the participants were collected which included details like, age, gender, location background of home*, educational board in which they studied**, marks obtained in plus 2/pre university***, educational and occupational details of parents etc. The next section had questions regarding the factors that influenced career choice. This involved questions like who introduced the participant to the field of ASLP, whether ASLP was their first choice, the factors that attracted them to join the program, and the most influential factor in their career choice.
Footnotes: *Location background of home refers to whether the participant hails from a rural or an urban background. **Educational board in which the participant studied - in India, generally schools follow the syllabus of one of the three educational boards namely: state syllabus (which is specific to each state of the country), Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE), and Indian Certificate of Secondary Education (ICSE). These boards monitor the educational policies and programmes. ***Plus 2/pre university refers to 12th Grade/Class 12.

Procedure

We developed the questionnaire by taking relevant questions from related articles [9,12] and were modified to suit the objectives of the present study. Also, we included the questions that we perceived as contextually relevant to the topic. The questionnaire was given to five experienced ASLP professionals with at least five years of experience for content validation. For each question in the questionnaire, the experts rated the contextual relevance on a 4-point rating scale where 4=relevant, 3=somewhat relevant, 2=somewhat irrelevant, and 1=irrelevant. If the rating provided by all the five experts was 4 or 3, then that question was retained; that is, 100% agreement was sought. This rating was taken for calculating the content validity index (CVI). We calculated both validities of the individual items (itemwise CVI=I-CVI) and the content validity of the overall scale (scalewise CVI=S-CVI) [20]. A scale composed of the items with I-CVIs that meet Lynn’s [20] criteria (I-CVI=1.00 with 3 to 5 experts) and having an S-CVI/Ave of 0.90 or higher is judged as having excellent content validity. Based on the responses received, three questions that had poor rating scores were removed. Thus, the I-CVI and S-CVI of the questionnaire were 1. The questionnaire had 17 questions, and was used for the pilot study.
In the pilot study, 20 ASLP students from different years of the UG program participated. These participants were chosen by convenient sampling and were studying in the same institute as that of the investigators. The questionnaire was incorporated in the Dynamics 365 Customer voice (Microsoft Corporation, 2020) and the link was mailed to the participants. Based on the responses, three questions were added to the original questionnaire. The additional questions added were as follows: one question each on rating the influences of personal, educational, and employment factors on the choice of career was added. This was added to obtain more clarity on the influence of each factor on the career choice in Indian scenario. Thus, the modified questionnaire consisted of 20 questions. This version of the questionnaire was also content validated by the same experts. There was a consensus among them, leading to the item-wise and scale-wise content validity index of the final questionnaire to 1.
The final questionnaire was also incorporated in the Dynamics 365 Customer voice (Microsoft Corporation, 2020). The data collection was carried out by distributing the link to the questionnaire through emails, social media platforms like WhatsApp groups, and Instagram. Many institution wise WhatsApp student groups exist in which the link to the questionnaire was posted. Similarly, the link to the questionnaire was posted in the Instagram page of the investigators. The links were posted only once and once the required sample size was achieved, the data collection was stopped and the data was analyzed.

RESULTS

The results for the question who introduced the participants to the field of ASLP is provided in Figure 1. It is evident from the Figure 1 that parents/family member/relative/friend was the major source who introduced the participants to the field of ASLP (61.84%), followed by newspaper/media/internet/social media (13.68%). An ASLP or a student of ASLP was the third main source of information (11.58%). This trend of major source was also found in the results for the question how the participants got more information regarding the program to make an informed decision about applying to the program. For this questions, the participants could choose more than one option and the distribution of 492 responses is shown in Figure 2. Parents/family member/relative/friend was the main source (40.65% of the responses) to obtain more information about the program. The second main source was internet/social media (24.19% of the responses), followed by speech and hearing institutes/clinics/ASLPs (11.18% of the responses).
The factors that the participants were informed/aware about the program of ASLP when applying to the program are represented in Figure 3. From the Figure 3 it can be noticed that the scope of practice of ASLP was a well informed aspect (24.8% of the responses). Work settings (17.4% of the responses), academic curriculum (11.6% of the responses), and financial remuneration (7.4% of the responses) were the less informed aspects. Figure 4 shows the percentage of responses for the factors that the participants found attractive about the ASLP program before joining. It can be observed that while ASLP being a service oriented field was the most attractive aspect (31.88% of the responses), course fees was the least attractive aspect (1.42% of the responses). It is also interesting to note that a very small percentage of responses (1.21% of the responses) indicated that the participants had not found the program attractive.
The details regarding whether ASLP was the participants’ first choice, if not, what was their first choice, and whether the participants had applied to any other program and were selected for the same are provided in Table 2. Slightly more than half of the participants (53.16%) had ASLP program as their first choice. Among those for whom ASLP was not their first choice, most of them had medicine as their priority (74.16%). Among all the participants, a greater number of the participants (58.16%) had not applied to any other program apart from ASLP. Within those participants who had applied to other programs, 70.44% of them had been selected to the programs that they had applied. Among 218 participants (except for I and II-year UG participants), 196 (89.91%) participants responded that they plan to continue in the field and work as an Audiologist or SLP after completing the program.

Influence of various factors on career decision

The percentage of responses for the single most influential factor on the career choice of the participants is provided in Figure 5. From the Figure 5 it is seen that the desire to work in a helping profession was the most influential factor (52.11%). Parents/family member/relative/friend was identified the most influential factor by 32.89% of the participants. Remaining factors like experience wirh a parent of a child with communication disorder/individual with communication disorder, personal experience, teacher/career guidance was chosen as the most influential factor by less than 5% of the participants.
To gain more insight into the influential factors, the influences of various factors were classified under three main headings: personal, educational, and employment influences. The participants were asked to rate the influences of each factor on their career decision on a 5-point rating scale where 0 indicated “not an influence,” and 4 indicated “considerable influence” (rating responses provided in Figure 6, Figure 7, and Figure 8 respectively). Figure 6 shows that among personal influences, the desire to work in a helping profession (57.37%) was considered influential followed by parents (40.78%). Experience with an ASLP was considered not an influential factor in ASLP career choice by 48.9% of the participants. From Figure 7 it can be noticed that among the educational influences, location of the institute received greater percentage of 4-point rating indicating considerable influence (24.21%). Teacher in school received greater percentage of 0-point rating indicating no influence (52.63%). Among the employment influences (Figure 8), scope of practice (46.32%) and chances to be employed by foreign countries (46.1%) were considered as considerable influential factor, while job availability (42.63%) held the next position.
The responses of the participants regarding whether they or their family members were diagnosed with communication disorder before joining the program and how the diagnosis of communication disorder had influenced their decision to become an ASLP are provided in Table 3. It was observed that 21.84% of the participants indicated that a diagnosis of communication disorder was made in themselves or in family member/relative/friend before they joined the ASLP program. When these participants were asked how the diagnosis of communication disorder influenced their decision to become an ASLP, 32.53% of the participants reported that it made them feel empathetic for others with a communication disorder. Some (20.48%) also felt that they have overcome their communication difficulties and wanted to help others do the same.

Association between several factors and ASLP as the first choice of career

Several demographic variables and responses to many questions in the questionnaire were identified as possible influential factors in career choice. All the demographic variables that were considered as potential influential factors were: gender (male/female), location background of home (urban/rural), education board which the participant studied (state/CBSE/ICSE), marks scored in plus 2/grade 12 (distinction/first class/second class/third class), educational qualification of parents (professional/post graduates/graduates/grade 12 or diploma/grade 10 or less), occupation of parents (legislators/professionals/technicians/clerks/agricultural workers/self employed/unemployed). Among the responses to questions, the factors that were considered important and influential in making ASLP career decision in previous studies [9,1118] were considered for the analysis: awareness about various factors related to the program before joining the ASLP program; whether the participant applied to other programs; the most influential factor; influence of various personal, educational and employment factors; diagnosis of communication disorder in self or family/relatives/friends. Association between career choice (whether ASLP was the first choice or not) and the possible influential factors were assessed using the Pearson Chi-square test. The associations were considered significant if the p-values were less than 0.05. When the association was tested for 2X2 cross-tabulations, the effect size was reported using Phi, and for larger tables, Cramer’s V was reported. Complete statistical results of all the cross-tabulation and Chi-square tests between several variables in the questionnaire are provided as supplementary material (S2S9). Only Chi-square test values of all the associations tested are reported here.
None of the demographic variables of the participants (gender, location background of home, educational board; marks scored in plus 2/grade 12, education, and occupation of father and mother) were significantly associated with ASLP as the first choice of career (Table 4). Neither the awareness about various aspects of the ASLP program was significantly associated with the ASLP as the first career choice (Table 5). However, from Table 6 it can be seen that the proportion of participants choosing ASLP as the first choice was more when they did not apply to other programs than otherwise. Association between the first choice and the variable the most influential factor on the career choice was significant. Pair-wise Chi-square association between ASLP as the first choice and different influential factors was done by applying Bonferroni’s correction for multiple comparisons. Hence, a p-value less than 0.003 was considered significant (0.05/15=0.003) (S7). Results of pairwise comparison indicated that a greater number of participants who reported that the desire to work in helping profession was the most influential factor on their choice of career had ASLP as the first career choice. On the other hand, participants who reported parents were the most influential factor in their career choice had lesser number of participants with ASLP as the first choice. Association between diagnosis of communication disorder in self and diagnosis of communication disorder in the family with ASLP as the first choice of career were not significant (Table 6).
For statistical analysis, the 5-point rating responses to the influence of personal, educational, and employment factors were converted into a dichotomous response. Ratings 0, 1, and 2 were considered “no influence,” and ratings 3 and 4 were considered “considerable influence.” Chi-square association between these variables and ASLP as the first choice of career was investigated (Table 7). Under the personal influences, participants having considerable influence from desire to work in a helping profession, and experience with a parent of a child with communication disorder/individual with communication disorder had more chances of having ASLP as the first career choice. Under the educational influences, the participants who had considerable influence from the academic curriculum had significantly higher chances of choosing ASLP as the first choice of career. None of the factors under the employment influences were significantly associated with ASLP as the first choice.
Summarizing the association between the factors affecting ASLP as the first choice of career, it can be said that the demographic variables considered in this study, awareness about various aspects of ASLP program before applying for the program were not significantly associated with the first choice of career. The important associations with the first choice of career were: the desire to work in helping profession, experience with an individual with communication disorder, academic curriculum, and not applying to any other program. It can be underscored that personal influences were more significant than educational and employment influences on the first choice of career of the participants.

DISCUSSION

Introduction to the field of ASLP

To our knowledge, this is the first study in India which investigated the factors that might have influenced the choice of career among current ASLP UG students. The present study showed that most of the participants learnt about the ASLP field from parents/family member/relative/friend. Earlier investigations also reported that their participants learnt about ASLP program from family/friends [9,21,22]. However, it is to be noted that parents/family/relatives/friends have a more significant role in introducing the ASLP program to students in India than in other countries. Donai [21] and Guigen et al. [9] who reported school and booklets on a career as the second primary source of information about ASLP program respectively. These differences across studies could be related to the timeline when these studies were conducted, the availability of the internet then, and the differences in information sources that introduce the students to ASLP across various countries.
The primary sources where the participants searched for more information regarding the program to make an informed decision about applying to the program were parents/family member/relative/friend and internet/social media. These significant sources contrast with Byrne [13], who reported that most participants obtained information about the SLP program from the internet and university admissions center book. However, there were only 16 participants in that study where the authors conducted in-depth interviews. The differences could also reflect the access to the internet and the popularity of social media at different times and countries. Overall, it appears that in the present day, parents/family member/relative/friend and internet/social media plays a significant role in introducing the students to the program of ASLP in India.

Awareness about the ASLP program and career choice

Various studies have shown that most of the students were unfamiliar with the profession of audiology [21,2325]. Donai et al. [26] pointed that the awareness of audiology as a potential career path is low compared to other professions such as optometry and podiatry. Guigen et al. [9] stated that a majority of the participants were not satisfied with the amount of details collected regarding various aspects of ASLP before getting into the college, mainly related to the work settings of ASLP. Few participants in their study also preferred to know about the academic curriculum and minimum financial remuneration allowed by law. In concurrence to this, present study showed that work settings, academic curriculum, and financial remuneration were the apects of ASLP program which were less known when applying to the program. Thus, it can be concluded that students entering the field of ASLP do not have all the information regarding the program. This indicates the need to promote awarenss regarding various aspects about the ASLP field among students who are about to make their career decision.
The current research shows that slightly more than half of the participants had ASLP as their first choice when applying for higher education. These findings were similar to that of Guigen et al. [9]. Doyle and Freeman [27] reported that 92% of the students seriously considered another occupation before they decided to pursue audiology. The percentage of students applying for other careers (degree/majors) at college was also high in Guigen et al. [9] study. In contrast, a higher percentage of the current study participants did not apply to any other program other than ASLP. Thus, it appears that the Indian ASLP students were more focused on their choice of career than students from other countries.
Among the participants for whom ASLP was not the first choice, most of them had medicine as their first choice. This is in contrast to the observations of Guigen et al. [9], who found that many of the students for whom ASLP was not the first choice, physiotherapy was their first choice. Thus, the present study’s findings and Guigen et al. [9] are different, especially when ASLP was not the first choice. In India, very frequently, when students aspiring to pursue career in medicine do not succeed in securing a seat in medical college, they consider allied health programs like ASLP or physiotherapy as their alternative career choice. Hence, creating awareness about ASLP program among students in general and students aspiring to pursue career in medicine in particular, might attract more students to ASLP program when they do not succeed to pursue their first career choice.

Influence of various factors on choice of career of ASLP students

Participants of the present study were asked to select a single most influential factor in career choice. Desire to work in a helping profession turned out to be the most frequently chosen influential factor, followed by parents/family member/relative/friend. Statistically, among the three groups of probable influential factors, personal factors had a substantial influence than educational and employment factors. Among personal factors, the impact of desire to work in a helping profession and experience with an individual with communication disorder was greater to choose ASLP as the first career choice. These findings were similar to the results of previous studies [9,12,15,17].
For a majority of the participants of the present study who were diagnosed with a communication disorder in self/family/friends before joining the program, the diagnosis had some influence on their career choice. This agrees with previous investigations [11,14,16]. It can be summarized that the experience with a communication disorder in any form can positively influence one’s choice of selecting ASLP as a career. However, Byrne [14] alerts that exposure alone is an insufficient reason to want to enter the SLP program for some people. Also, for some participants, exposure to SLP may have been a factor that discouraged them from entering the profession. In the present study, for a smaller percentage of the participants, the diagnosis of communication disorder in self/family did not influence their career choice.
Among educational influences, only academic curriculum affected the ASLP as a career choice. There was no influence of employment factors on the choice of career as ASLP. On one hand it can be argued that for students making a career choice, employment factors are secondary to personal and educational influences. On the other side, this finding can also be related to the fact that financial remuneration, which is an employment factor was the least known aspect about ASLP among the present participants when they applied to the ASLP program. This fact is supported by the literature findings. For example, Guigen et al. [9] stated that 77% of their participants were dissatisfied with the details collected before getting into the college and mainly related to the work settings of ASLP. A few participants in their study also preferred to know about the academic curriculum and minimum financial remuneration allowed by law. Furthermore, there is insufficient awareness among college entering students about audiologists and the ASLP [21,23,25,28]. Thus, it is possible that, due to lack of awareness about the ASLP program, educational and employment factors were not influential on their career choice. Combining the findings of previous studies and present investigation, we emphasize the need to provide more detailed information regarding the ASLP program which can attract more admissions.
Students who had not applied to any other program more likely had ASLP as the first choice than if they had applied to any other program. No relevant literature regarding this fact was identified. However, it is possible that the students who applied only to the ASLP program were more informed about the program and were more satisfied with their choice of career. It is also possible that they were determined to enter the ASLP career and were confident in getting through the program such that they did not apply to any other program. In addition, it is to be noted that all the participants who had ASLP as the first choice had not applied to other programs. This is the novel finding of the study.

Limitations and future directions

This study has certain limitations. Since the questionnaire was distributed on social media platforms, the participants were unevenly distributed across the institutions in India. More responses were available from ASLP students studying in South India. The factors influencing the career choice could be different in other parts of India, which could be explored in future studies.

CONCLUSION

We found similarities and differences in the factors that influenced career choice as ASLP among Indian students compared to students from other countries. The findings of the present study which are in consensus with the literature is as follows. Students who are making a career choice are not aware about all the apsects of ASLP program and there is a need to create more awareness about the field of ASLP. There is a greater influence of personal factors over educational and employment factors on ASLP as the first career choice. Service oriented nature of ASLP profession is the driving factor that attracts many students to this career path.
Results identified the key factors that can promote the career of ASLP in India, helping to improve the visibility of the program to young college aspirants. There is a greater influence of parents/family and internet/social media in introducing the ASLP field to the students in India than other countries. The desire to work in a helping profession, experience with an individual with communication disorder, and academic curriculum influences the first choice of career as an ASLP. Indian ASLP students are more determined in pursuing their career and many did not apply to any other program apart from ASLP program.
Student’s decisions are not just based on a particular influential factor but a combination of influences. There is a need to create more awareness about the details of the ASLP program in the general public to attract admission to the program and help students make informed choices about their careers. Irrespective of their first choice of career before joining the ASLP program, a majority of the participants do not doubt their decision, intend to work as ASLP after completing the program, and recommend the ASLP program to others, which assures the growth of the ASLP profession in India.

Notes

CONFLICT OF INTEREST

No relevant conflicts of interest.

FUNDING

No funds were receiued for this study.

Figure 1
Percentage of responses for the question who introduced the participants to the field of Audiology and Speech Language Pathology. Personal experience: Personal experience (consulted an Audiologist or Speech Language Pathologist for self or accompanied someone for consultation); Parents/Friend: Parents/Family member/Relative/Friend; Teacher: Teacher/Career guidance; ASLP: Audiologist/Speech Language Pathologist/Student of ASLP; Person with CD: Parent of a child with communication disorder/Individual with communication disorder; Media: Newspaper/Media/Internet/Social media.
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Figure 2
Frequency of responses for the question from where did the participants got more information regarding the program to make an informed decision about applying to the program of ASLP (533 responses).
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Figure 3
Frequency of responses regarding the factors that the participants were informed/aware at the time of applying to the program of ASLP (1,169 responses).
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Figure 4
Percentage of responses for factors that attracted the participants to join the program of ASLP (988 responses).
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Figure 5
Percentage of responses for the most influential factor on the choice of career of the participants. Parents/Family: Parents/Family member/Relative/Friend; Teacher: Teacher/Career guidance; Experience with a parent: Experience with a parent of a child with communication disorder/individual with communication disorder; Personal experience: Personal experience with an ASLP; Desire to work in a helping profession: My desire to work in a helping/service oriented profession.
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Figure 6
Frequency of responses for different ratings provided for the influence of different personal factors on career choice.
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Figure 7
Frequency of responses for different ratings provided for the influence of different educational factors on career choice.
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Figure 8
Frequency of responses for different ratings provided for the influence of different employment factors on career choice.
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Table 1
Distribution of the participants in each year of the under graduation course, gender, and location background of home
Number of participants= N (percentage)
Undergraduate year
 I year BASLP 58 (15.26)
 II year BASLP 104 (27.37)
 III year BASLP 158 (41.58)
 Internship BASLP 60 (15.79)
 Total 380 (100.00)

Gender
 Males 54 (14.21)
 Females 326 (85.79)
 Total 380 (100.00)

Location background of home
 Urban 206 (54.21)
 Rural 174 (45.79)
 Total 380 (100.00)

BASLP, Bachelor of Audiology and Speech Language Pathology.

Table 2
Distribution of participants across the first choice of career, the number of programs that they had applied, and whether they were selected for the programs that they had applied
Number of participants= N (percentage)
ASLP as the first choice of career
 Yes 202 (53.16)
 No 178 (46.84)
 Total 380 (100.00)

First choice of participants for whom ASLP was not the first choice
 Medicine 132 (74.16)
 Engineering 9 (5.06)
 Others 37 (20.79)
 Total 178 (100.00)

Whether applied to other courses
 Yes 159 (41.84)
 No 221 (58.16)
 Total 380 (100.00)

Whether participants were selected to other courses that they had applied
 Yes 112 (70.44)
 No 47 (29.56)
 Total 159 (100.00)
Table 3
Diagnosis of communication disorder in self/family member/relative/friend and its influence on the decision to become an audiologist and speech language pathologist
Number of participants=N (percentage)
Diagnosis of communication disorder before joining the course
 In self 7 (1.58)
 In family members/relative/friend 75 (19.74)
 Both self and family members/relative/friend 1 (0.26)
 Total 83 (21.84)

Influence of the diagnosis of communication disorder
 It did not influence their career choice 20 (24.10)
 It had introduced them to the field 19 (22.89)
 It made them feel empathic for others with a communication disorder 27 (32.53)
 They have overcome their communication difficulties and wanted to help others do the same 17 (20.48)
 Total 83 (100.00)
Table 4
Chi-square association between whether ASLP was the first choice of career and various demographic variables
Demographic variable (categories) Chi-square test value (χ) Degrees of freedom (df) Significance level Effect size (Phi/Cramer’s V)
Gender 0.634 1 0.426 −0.041
Location background of home 2.398 1 0.121 −0.079
Educational board in plus 2/12th Grade 0.844 2 0.656 0.047
Percentage score in plus 2/12th Grade Analysis not done as more than 20% of the cells had expected cell frequency less than 5
Father’s education 4.619 4 0.329 0.111
Mother’s education 2.637 4 0.620 0.084
Father’s occupation 3.999 7 0.780 0.103
Mother’s occupation Analysis not done as more than 20% of the cells had expected cell frequency less than 5

Where the total is less than 380, the data was not available.

Categories of different demographic variables-Gender: Male/Female; Location background of home: Rural/Urban; Educational board in plus 2/12th Grade: State/CBSE/ICSE; Percentage score in plus 2/12th Grade: Distinction/First/Second/Third class/No response; Father’s and Mother’s education: Profession or honours/post graduate/graduate/plus 2 or diploma/10th grade or less; Father’s and Mother’s occupation: Legislators/Professionals/Technicians/Clerks/Agricultural/Self-employed/Unemployed/Retired.

Table 5
Chi-square association between whether ASLP was the first choice of career and awareness about various factors related to ASLP
Awareness about various factors Chi-square test value (χ) Degrees of freedom (df) Significance level Effect size (Phi)
Work settings 3.692 1 0.055 0.099
Scope of practice 0.265 1 0.606 0.026
Academic curriculum 3.715 1 0.054 0.099
Financial remuneration 0.219 1 0.640 0.024
Course fees 2.286 1 0.131 −0.078
Chances to be employed by foreign countries 1.534 1 0.216 −0.064

Categories of all the variables was Yes/No.

Table 6
Chi-square association between whether ASLP was the first choice of career and whether a participant had applied to other programs, the most influential factor on career choice, diagnosis of communication disorder in self, and diagnosis of communication disorder in family/friends
Factor Chi-square test value (χ) Degrees of freedom (df) Significance level Effect size (Phi)
Applied to other course 48.801 1 0.000 −0.358
Most influential factor on the career choice 21.532 5 0.001 0.238
Diagnosis of communication disorder in self Chi-square analysis not done as more than 20% of the cells had expected cell frequency less than 5
Diagnosis of communication disorder in family member/relative/friend 2.071 1 0.150 0.074

Categories of different factors: Applied to other course-Yes/No; Most influential factor on the career choice - Parents/Family member/Relative/Friend, Teacher/Career guidance, Experience with a parent of a child with communication disorder/individual with communication disorder, Personal experience with an ASLP, my desire to work in a helping/service oriented profession, Others.

Table 7
Chi-square association between whether ASLP was the first choice of career and the influence of personal, educational and employment factors (degrees of freedom=1)
Influence of various factors Chi-square test value (χ) Significance level Effect size (Phi)
Personal factors
 Parents 0.631 0.427 −0.041
 Family 0.462 0.497 0.035
 Friends 3.833 0.050 0.100
 Personal experience with an ASLP 0.816 0.366 0.046
 My desire to work in a helping/service oriented profession 4.711 0.030 0.111
 Experience with a parent of a child with communication disorder/individual with communication disorder 5.332 0.021 0.118

Educational factors
 Teacher in school 0.651 0.420 0.041
 Career guidance 0.001 0.971 −0.002
 Academic curriculum 4.418 0.036 0.108
 Length of the program 0.465 0.495 0.035
 Course fees 1.996 0.158 −0.072
 Location of the institute 0.205 0.651 −0.023

Employment factors
 Financial remuneration 0.266 0.606 −0.026
 Job availability 1.539 0.215 0.062
 Diversity of professional work settings 0.986 0.321 0.051
 Working hours per day/work load 0.365 0.546 0.031
 Opportunities for professional advancement 0.001 0.907 −0.002
 Chances to be employed by foreign countries 0.867 0.352 −0.048
 Scope of practice 3.836 0.050 0.097

Categories of all the variables: No influence/considerable influence.

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Appendices

Appendix 1

Questionnaire

cacd-2022-00829-Appendix-1.pdf
Appendix 2

Cross tabulation and Chi-square association between whether ASLP was the first choice of career and various demographic variables

Demographic variable Categories ASLP as first choice of career Chi-square test value (χ) Degrees of freedom (df) Significance level Effect size (Phi/Cramer’s V)

Yes No Total
Gender Males 26 28 54 0.634 1 0.426 −0.041
Females 176 150 236
Total 202 178 380

Location background of home Rural 100 74 174 2.398 1 0.121 −0.079
Urban 102 104 206
Total 202 178 380

Educational board in +2/pre university State 117 95 212 0.844 2 0.656 0.047
CBSE 77 76 153
ICSE 8 7 15
Total 202 178 380

Percentage score in plus II/pre university Distinction 105 106 211 Analysis not done as more than 20% of the cells had expected cell frequency less than 5
First 78 53 131
Second 16 19 35
Third class 2 0 2
No response 1 0 0
Total 202 178 380
Appendix 3

Cross tabulation and Chi-square comparison between whether ASLP was the first choice of career and highest educational qualification and occupation of parents

Comparison Categories ASLP as first choice of career Chi-square test value (χ) Degrees of freedom (df) Significance level Effect size (Cramer’s V)

Yes No Total
First choice vs. father’s education Profession or Honours 7 8 15 4.619 4 0.329 0.111
Post graduates 25 26 51
Graduates 70 65 135
Plus 2/diploma 66 43 109
10th or less 30 36 66
Total 198 178 376

First choice vs. mother’s education Profession or Honours 13 7 20 2.637 4 0.620 0.084
Post graduates 25 29 54
Graduates 80 66 146
Plus 2/diploma 55 49 104
10th or less 25 26 51
Total 198 177 375

First choice vs. father’s occupation Legislators, senior officials and managers, Income tax officer 20 16 36 3.999 7 0.780 0.103
Professionals 19 20 39
Technicians and associate profes-sionals 26 25 51
Clerks, Skilled workers and shop and market sales workers 38 40 78
Agricultural and fishery workers 16 11 27
Business/Self employed 62 55 117
Unemployed 1 0 1
Could not ascertain/retired/not mentioned 20 11 31
Total 202 178 380

First choice vs. mother’s occupation Legislators, senior officials and managers, Income tax officer 3 2 5 Analysis not done as more than 20% of the cells had expected cell frequency less than 5
Professionals 41 46 87
Technicians and associate professionals 3 8 11
Clerks, Skilled workers and shop and market sales workers 20 14 34
Agricultural and fishery workers 0 0 0
Business/Self employed 3 3 6
Unemployed 123 94 217
Could not ascertain/retired/not mentioned 9 11 20
Total 202 178 380

Where the total is less than 380, the data was not available.

Appendix 4

Cross tabulation and Chi-square association between whether ASLP was the first choice of career and awareness about various factors related to ASLP

Awareness about various factors ASLP as first choice of career Chi-square test value (χ) Degrees of freedom (df) Significance level Effect size (Phi)

Yes No Total
Work settings Yes 113 82 195 3.692 1 0.055 0.099
No 89 96 185
Total 202 178 380
Scope of practice Yes 150 128 278 0.265 1 0.606 0.026
No 52 50 102
Total 202 178 380
Academic curriculum Yes 78 52 130 3.715 1 0.054 0.099
No 124 126 250
Total 202 178 380
Financial remuneration Yes 46 37 83 0.219 1 0.640 0.024
No 156 141 297
Total 202 178 380
Course fees Yes 107 108 215 2.286 1 0.131 −0.078
No 95 70 165
Total 202 178 380
Chances to be employed by foreign countries Yes 111 109 220 1.534 1 0.216 −0.064
No 91 69 160
Total 202 178 380
Appendix 5

Cross tabulation and Chi-square association between whether ASLP was the first choice of career and whether a participant had applied to other courses

Applied to other courses ASLP as first choice of career Chi-square test value (χ) Degrees of freedom (df) Significance level Effect size (Phi)
Yes No Total
Did not apply to other course 51 108 159 48.801 1 0.000 −0.358
Applied to other course 151 70 221
Total 202 178 380
Appendix 6

Cross tabulation and Chi-square association between whether ASLP was the first choice of career and the most influential factor on career choice (degrees of freedom=5)

Most influential factor on the career choice ASLP as first choice of career Chi-square test value (χ) Significance level Effect size (Cramer’s V)
Yes No Total
Parents/Family member/Relative/Friend 49 79 125 21.532 0.001 0.238
Teacher/Career guidance 10 7 17
Experience with a parent of a child with communication disorder/individual with communication disorder 11 8 19
Personal experience with an ASLP 125 73 198
My desire to work in a helping/service oriented profession 6 11 17
Others 1 3 4
Total 202 178 380
Appendix 7

Pair-wise cross tabulation and Chi-square association between whether ASLP was the first choice of career and the most influential factor on career choice (degrees of freedom=1)

Most influential factor (number of participants in the analysis) ASLP as first choice of career Chi-square test value (χ) Significance level Effect size (Phi)

Yes No Total
Parents/Family member/Relative/Friend 49 76 125 0.096 0.756 −0.026
 Teacher/Career guidance 6 11 17
 Total 55 87 142

Parents/Family member/Relative/Friend 49 76 125 2.372 0.124 0.128
 Experience with a parent of a child with communication disorder/individual with communication disorder 11 8 19
 Total 60 84 144

Parents/Family member/Relative/Friend 49 76 125 2.373 0.123 0.129
 Personal experience with an ASLP 10 7 17
 Total 59 83 142

Parents/Family member/Relative/Friend 49 76 125 17.659 0.000 0.234
 My desire to work in a helping/service oriented profession 125 73 198
 Total 174 149 323

Parents/Family member/Relative/Friend 49 76 125 Analysis not done as more than 20% of the cells had expected cell frequency less than 5
 Others 1 3 4
 Total 50 79 129

Teacher/Career guidance 6 11 17 1.839 0.175 −0.226
 Experience with a parent of a child with communication disorder/individual with communicationdisorder 11 8 19
 Total 17 19 36

Teacher/Career guidance 6 11 17 1.889 0.169 −0.236
 Personal experience with an ASLP 10 7 17
 Total 16 18 34

Teacher/Career guidance 6 11 17 5.096 0.024 −0.154
 My desire to work in a helping/service oriented profession 125 73 198
 Total 131 84 215

Teacher/Career guidance 6 11 17 Analysis not done as more than 20% of the cells had expected cell frequency less than 5
 Others 1 3 4
 Total 7 14 21

Experience with a parent of a child with communication disorder/individual with communication disorder 11 8 19 0.003 0.955 −0.009
 Personal experience with an ASLP 10 7 17
 Total 21 15 36

Experience with a parent of a child with communication disorder/individual with communication disorder 11 8 19 0.203 0.652 0.031

My desire to work in a helping/service oriented profession 125 73 198
 Total 136 81 217

Experience with a parent of a child with communication disorder/individual with communication disorder 11 8 19 Analysis not done as more than 20% of the cells had expected cell frequency less than 5
 Others 1 3 4
 Total 12 11 23

Personal experience with an ASLP 10 7 17 0.124 0.724 0.024
 My desire to work in a helping/service oriented profession 125 73 198
 Total 135 80 215

Personal experience with an ASLP 10 7 17 Analysis not done as more than 20% of the cells had expected cell frequency less than 5
 Others 1 3 4
 Total 11 10 21

My desire to work in a helping/service oriented profession 125 73 198 Analysis not done as more than 20% of the cells had expected cell frequency less than 5
 Others 1 3 4
 Total 126 76 202
Appendix 8

Cross tabulation and Chi-square association between whether ASLP was the first choice of career and the influence of personal, educational and employment factors (degrees of freedom=1)

Influence of various factors ASLP as first choice of career Chi-square test value (χ) Significance level Effect size (Phi)

Yes No Total
Personal factors
 Parents No influence 76 60 136 0.631 0.427 −0.041
Considerable influence 126 118 244
Total 202 178 380
 Family No influence 126 117 243 0.462 0.497 0.035
Considerable influence 76 61 137
Total 202 178 380
 Friends No influence 136 136 272 3.833 0.050 0.100
Considerable influence 66 42 108
Total 202 178 380
 Personal experience with an ASLP No influence 139 130 269 0.816 0.366 0.046
Considerable influence 63 48 111
Total 202 178 380
 My desire to work in a helping/service oriented profession No influence 30 42 72 4.711 0.030 0.111
Considerable influence 172 136 308
Total 202 178 380
 Experience with a parent of a child with communication disorder/individual with communication disorder No influence 125 130 255 5.332 0.021 0.118
Considerable influence 77 48 125
Total 202 178 380

Educational factors
 Teacher in school No influence 153 141 294 0.651 0.420 0.041
Considerable influence 49 37 86
Total 202 178 380
 Career guidance No influence 149 131 280 0.001 0.971 −0.002
Considerable influence 53 47 100
Total 202 178 380
 Academic curriculum No influence 121 125 246 4.418 0.036 0.108
Considerable influence 81 53 134
Total 202 178 380
 Length of the program No influence 111 104 215 0.465 0.495 0.035
Considerable influence 91 74 165
Total 202 178 380
 Course fees No influence 160 130 290 1.996 0.158 −0.072
Considerable influence 42 48 90
Total 202 178 380
 Location of the institute No influence 117 99 216 0.205 0.651 −0.023
Considerable influence 85 79 164
Total 202 178 380

Employment factors
 Financial remuneration No influence 130 110 240 0.266 0.606 −0.026
Considerable influence 72 68 140
Total 202 178 380
 Job availability No influence 51 59 110 1.539 0.215 0.062
Considerable influence 151 119 270
Total 202 178 380
 Diversity of professional work settings No influence 64 65 129 0.986 0.321 0.051
Considerable influence 138 113 251
Total 202 178 380
 Working hours per day/work load No influence 97 91 188 0.365 0.546 0.031
Considerable influence 105 87 192
Total 202 178 380
 Opportunities for professional advancement No influence 73 64 137 0.001 0.907 −0.002
Considerable influence 129 114 243
Total 202 178 380
 Chances to be employed by foreign countries No influence 68 52 120 0.867 0.352 −0.048
Considerable influence 134 126 260
Total 202 178 380
 Scope of practice No influence 44 50 94 3.836 0.050 0.097
Considerable influence 158 128 286
Total 202 178 380
Appendix 9

Cross tabulation and Chi-square association between whether ASLP was the first choice of career and diagnosis of communication disorder in self and in family member/relative/friend

Diagnosis of communication disorder ASLP as first choice of career Chi-square test value (χ) Degrees of freedom (df) Significance level Effect size (Phi)

Yes No Total
Diagnosis of communication disorder in self Yes 3 5 8 Chi-square analysis not done as more than 20% of the cells had expected cell frequency less than 5
No 199 173 372
Total 202 178 380

Family member/relative/friend diagnosed with any communication disorder Yes 46 30 76 2.071 1 0.150 0.074
No 156 148 304
Total 202 178 380
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