Frequently Asked Questions

FAQs for the Public

FAQs for Speech-Language Pathologists, Audiologists, Supportive Personnel, and Students

FAQs for Related Professionals

FAQs for the Public

What is the Speech and Hearing Association of Nova Scotia (SHANS)?
SHANS is the professional association of Speech-Language Pathologists and Audiologists in Nova Scotia. Our provincial organization is led by the SHANS Executive, a group of volunteer-based Speech-Language Pathologists and Audiologists. Our goals are to support the professions, support our members and increase public awareness of the professions.

Who are Speech-Language Pathologists?
Speech-Language Pathologists are Masters or Doctorate level trained professionals with extensive knowledge, skills, and clinical training in the areas of communication and swallowing. Services are provided to all ages and SLPs can work in a variety of health care, education, and private settings.

Who are Audiologists?
Audiologists are Masters or Doctorate level trained professionals with extensive knowledge, skills, and clinical training in assessing and treating a broad range of auditory and balance impairments. Services are provided to all ages and Audiologists can work in a variety of health care and private settings.

What services do Speech-Language Pathologists provide?
Speech-Language Pathologists are uniquely qualified to evaluate and treat communication and swallowing issues. Treatments can help adults, school-aged, or preschool children with their understanding and use of language, speech, fluency, voice, resonance and/or cognitive communication needs. Swallowing is supported through early identification and management of swallowing disorders.

What services do Audiologists provide?
Audiologists provide prevention, identification, assessment and treatment of auditory and balance disorders. Services can help people of all ages with hearing disorders, amplification (e.g. hearing aids and other assistive listening devices), auditory processing disorders, tinnitus, balance and dizziness disorders.

How do I locate a Speech-Language Pathologist or Audiologist?
Publicly-funded speech and language services for preschoolers and adults are provided through the Nova Scotia Hearing and Speech Centres (NSHSC). NSHSC provides Audiology services for all ages. You can self-refer your child or yourself by contacting a location nearest you. NSHSC will put you or your family member’s name on their waitlist for assessment by a Speech-Language Pathologist (SLP) and/or Audiologist Your Nova Scotia Health card (MSI) covers the cost of these services. You do not have to pay for these services. Some people choose to look into private speech and language and/or audiology services as an option (e.g., due to wait lists).

Public Speech-Language Pathology Services for school-aged children are provided by the public school boards at no direct cost to you. The school teams will often determine whether the School Board SLP should be involved with your child. There are no Audiology services provided at the various NS School Boards. Should you have concerns about your child’s speech and language skills, tell your child’s school about your concerns. You do not have to pay for these services. Some people choose to look into private services as an option.

I am interested in finding a private Speech-Language Pathologist or Audiologist. Can you help me find a private practitioner in Nova Scotia? How much will it cost?
Private speech and language services are not covered through your Nova Scotia Health card (MSI); however, many health insurance plans will cover some of your speech therapy services and you should check with your service provider. Private Speech-Language Pathology service providers can be located through the yellow pages, contacting your public Speech-Language Pathologist/Audiologist for information, inquiring with your family doctor, through the national organization Speech-Language & Audiology Canada (SAC) and through SHANS (see* Private Speech-Language Pathology Services and *Private Audiology Services in Nova Scotia).

*These are not exhaustive lists of private practitioners in Nova Scotia. If you are an insurance company looking to confirm whether a specific practitioner is a member of SHANS in good standing please contact [email protected]

No set rates for private practice SLP or Audiology services have been recommended in Nova Scotia. Private practitioners have the flexibility to establish their own rates. SHANS suggests that you discuss pricing for all Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology services offered through your provider.

What questions should I ask a private Speech-Language Pathologist or Audiologist?
Costs/Logistics
• Contact your private health insurance provider first or your plan benefit book to find out what services your insurance covers.
• Ask the practitioner what their services are and how much they typically cost.
• Find out what the practitioner’s cancellation policy is
• What are the speech therapist’s hours?
• What is the location? Check to make sure the practitioner that is close to your area. Find out if you travel to them or if they will come to you and any differences in cost.

Credentials
Ask questions about the practitioner’s credentials and experience.
• How many years of experience do you have?
• What ages and disorders have you worked with?
• Inquire about experience with areas of your concern
• Are you a current member of SHANS/SAC?

Services
Find out what the Audiologist or Speech-Language Pathologist offers for services
• What is included in their assessment (e.g., is a written report provided? Is it extra or included in the cost of the assessment? Are test materials current and relevant to the concerns presented?)
• What is included in their treatment?
• Do they provide a breakdown of costs for all services and devices?
• What can I expect on my first visit?
• How frequently do I receive progress reports?
• Who will be providing the service? (e.g., person you are talking with or a member of the clinic?)
• Who should be involved? What do I need to do? Why is it important for me to do this?

Don’t forget to write down questions to ask the practitioner before you go!

Should I be concerned about my child’s speech and/or language?
Typical developmental information can be found here. You can inquire as well with your family doctor and your child’s classroom teacher regarding your concerns.

I am looking for hearing aid donations for a family member. Do you have any suggestions?
SHANS does not facilitate hearing aid donations. There are several funding opportunities available through the Dalhousie Hearing Aid Assistance Program. Your family member will need to have a complete hearing evaluation to ensure candidacy for conventional hearing aids at one of Nova Scotia Hearing and Speech Centre Sites. Ask your Audiologist at that site to provide information regarding access to funding programs.

FAQs for Speech-Language Pathologists, Audiologists, Supportive Personnel, and Students

What is SHANS?
SHANS is the professional association of Speech-Language Pathologists and Audiologists in Nova Scotia. Our provincial organization is led by the SHANS Executive, a group of volunteer-based Speech-Language Pathologists and Audiologists. Our goals are to support the professions, support our members and increase public awareness of the professions. Speech-Language Pathologists and Audiologists in Nova Scotia that are registered with SHANS also hold joint membership with our National professional association, Speech-Language & Audiology Canada (SAC). Students and supportive personnel also can hold membership with SHANS.

Membership is a professional credential and is not the same thing as holding a license or registration to practice in a specific province. Currently Nova Scotia does not have a regulatory body that provides licenses and registrations.

I am an Audiologist (AUD) or Speech Language Pathologist (SLP). How do I join SHANS and how much does it cost?
In Nova Scotia, all SHANS registrations go through our national association, Speech-Language and Audiology Canada (SAC) as we have a joint membership agreement. You can pay your annual SHANS fee in combination with SACs annual fee. Go to to SACs website for registration forms and fees for members

I am Supportive Personnel for Audiologists/Speech-Language Pathologists. How do I join SHANS? How much does it cost?
In Nova Scotia, all SHANS registrations go through our national Speech-Language and Audiology Canada (SAC) due to a joint membership agreement between these two agencies. There is no additional SHANS fee above and beyond the SAC fee for Supportive Personnel. Go to SACs website for registration forms and fees for members

I am a Speech-Language Pathology, Audiology, or Supportive Personnel Student. How do I join SHANS? How much does it cost?
In Nova Scotia, all SHANS registrations go through our national association the Speech-Language and Audiology Canada (SAC). There is no additional SHANS fee above and beyond the SAC fee for students. Go to to SACs website for registration forms and fees for members

I am a student looking to volunteer with an Audiologist or speech-Language Pathologist. How can you help me?
SHANS does not facilitate volunteer opportunities. In Nova Scotia there are several avenues you may explore for volunteer opportunities. Consider contacting:

Nova Scotia School Boards:
Annapolis Valley Regional School Board
Cape Breton-Victoria Regional School Board
Chignecto-Central Regional School Board
Conseil scolaire acadien provincial
Halifax Regional School Board
South Shore Regional School Board
Strait Regional School Board
Tri-County Regional School Board
Speech-Language Pathologists and Audiologists Association(SPAA)

Nova Scotia Hearing and Speech Centres
Private Speech-Language Pathology Services
Private Audiology Services
School of Human Communication Disorders, Dalhousie University

Some local hospitals may also have volunteer programs.

I am a Speech-Language Pathologist or Audiologist working internationally. What are the licensing requirements for Audiologists and Speech-Language Pathologists in Nova Scotia?
SHANS is an association and not yet a regulatory college so we do not assess internationally trained applications. We do hold a joint membership agreement with Speech-Language and Audiology Canada (SAC)
SAC has a system in place for evaluating internationally educated SLPs and Audiologists. Information can be found on their website here

SAC only accepts International Qualifications Assessment Service (IQAS) credential evaluations. You may fall under SAC’s assessment process for Mutual Recognition Agreement (MRA). Click here to find out if you are a member of another association that is eligible for SAC’s MRA.

FAQs for Related Professionals

I would like to distribute a workshop flyer to all of your members. How can I go about doing this?
Please email your workshop information to us at [email protected]
SHANS will then consider sending this information to our membership. SHANS does not release mailing lists for our members.

How do I join the SHANS Expo?
Thank you for your interest. The future of the SHANS Expo is currently being reviewed by the Executive at this time.

I am a Hearing Instrument Specialist. Can I become a SHANS member?
SHANS membership is not available to Hearing Instrument Specialists. SHANS is a professional association that represents Speech-Language Pathologists, Audiologists, Supportive Personnel and Speech-Language Pathology, Audiology and supportive personnel students. All SHANS members hold membership with Speech-Language &Audiology Canada (SAC).

I work with an insurance provider and would like to know what the recommended fees are for private practice Audiologists and Speech-Language Pathologists?
No set rates for private practice SLP or Audiology services have been recommended in Nova Scotia. Private practitioners have the flexibility to establish their own rates. SHANS suggests that you discuss pricing for all speech-language pathology and Audiology services offered through the provider.