Welcome to Communication Sciences and Disorders!

We offer two unique programs leading to the degrees in the practice of Speech-Language Pathology:

The Master's program is accredited by the Council on Academic Accreditation in Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA). In both of these programs, students complete closely supervised practical and/or internships in a variety of settings and with persons of varying ages. The Comprehensive Community Clinic that is housed in the College of Education provides opportunities for students to complete a number of clinical hours on the campus. However, students are required to complete clinical hours in other settings.

Communication Sciences and Disorders Program Faculty Contact:

Ms. Emily Leak, Program Director

Mission Statement

The mission of the Communication Sciences and Disorders is to prepare speech-language pathology professionals to deliver and promote the highest professional standards in a variety of clinical and educational settings, across a culturally and linguistically diverse client population. This is accomplished through the integration of traditional and emerging pedagogy, technologies, an a focus on excellence across a wide spectrum of communication disorders, from infancy through adulthood.

What is Communication Sciences and Disorders?

(adapted from the ASHA fact sheet for Speech-Language Pathology)

Nature of the Work

Working with the full range of human communication and its disorders, speech-language pathologists:

  • Evaluate and diagnose speech, language, cognitive-communication and swallowing disorders.
  • Treat speech, language, cognitive-communication and swallowing disorders in individuals of all ages, from infants to the elderly.

In addition, speech-language pathologists may:

  • Prepare future professionals in college and universities.
  • Manage agencies, clinics, organizations, or private practices.
  • Engage in research to enhance knowledge about human communication processes.
  • Supervise and direct public school or clinical programs.
  • Develop new methods and equipment to evaluate problems.
  • Establish more effective treatments.
  • Investigate behavioral patterns associated with communication disorders.
  • Speech-language pathologists often work as part of a team, which may include teachers, physicians, audiologists, psychologists, social workers, rehabilitation counselors and others. Corporate speech-language pathologists also work with employees to improve communication with their customers.
Work Sites

The practice and work of speech-language pathologists may take place in various settings:

  • Public and private schools
  • Hospitals
  • Rehabilitation centers
  • Short-term and long-term nursing care facilities
  • Community clinics
  • Colleges and universities
  • Private practice offices
  • State and local health departments
  • State and federal government agencies
  • Home health agencies (home care)
  • Adult day care centers
  • Centers for persons with developmental disabilities
  • Research laboratories
Entry Requirements

During high school, prospective speech-language pathologists should consider a program with courses in biology, physics, social sciences, English and mathematics, as well as in public speaking, language and psychology.

On the undergraduate level, a strong arts and sciences focus is recommended, with course work in linguistics, phonetics, anatomy, psychology, human development, biology, physiology, mathematics, physical science, social/behavioral sciences and semantics. A program of study in communication sciences and disorders is available at the undergraduate level.

The work of a speech-language pathologists is further enhanced by graduate education, which is mandated for certification by the Council For Clinical Certification (CFCC) of ASHA. Applicants in speech-language pathology must earn a graduate degree, successfully complete the required clinical experiences and pass a national examination. Additionally, the individual must acquire the requisite knowledge and skills mandated by certification standards while enrolled in a program accredited by the Council on Academic Accreditation in Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology (CAA).

Do you have what it takes to be a Speech-Language Pathologist?

To enter this career, one must have a sincere interest in helping people, an above average intellectual aptitude, and the sensitivity, personal warmth, and perspective to be able to interact with the person who has a communication problem. Scientific aptitude, patience, emotional stability, tolerance, and persistence are necessary, as well as resourcefulness and imagination. Other essential traits include a commitment to work cooperatively with others and the ability to communicate effectively both orally and in writing.

The graduate program currently seeks to admit approximately 20-25 full time students each fall semester.

Admittance Guidelines

Minimum criteria to be considered:

  • 3.0 or better GPA
  • GRE Scores of 147 verbal, 147 quantitative
  • 3 Letters of Recommendation
  • Writing Sample (The writing sample will be required for only those who are chosen for an interview)
  • Interview - By Invitation Only

For questions about graduate education, please contact the Graduate Studies Associate in the College of Education's Department of Graduate Studies at 678-839-5430