Communication Disorders and Sciences

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The Communication Disorders and Sciences program offers graduate work leading to the Master of Science degree. The program in communication disorders and sciences is designed to develop competence in the assessment and treatment of persons with communication disorders.

The master's degree programs in communication disorders and sciences is 63-66 semester hours. Candidates have the option of a research paper or a thesis. Candidates concentrating primarily on preparation for entry into the helping profession ordinarily opt to complete a research paper in their area of concentration. The thesis option typically requires a thesis of an experimental nature, a survey, or other form of research in which empirical data are collected and analyzed. Candidates must demonstrate their skills in formulating researchable questions or hypotheses, in identifying and/or manipulating relevant variables, and in the analysis and reporting of the results.

Coursework is planned to meet the academic and professional requirements for state and national certification, which are required for professional employment. These requirements comprise a minimum of 75 semester hours of course work, at least 30 semester hours of which must be at the graduate level. The M.S. degree program in speech-language pathology will culminate in eligibility for the Certificate of Clinical Competence of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association and state licensure. ASHA certification is required for work in agencies, hospitals, medical centers, and higher education. Students may take additional course work to qualify them for the program maintains many active research facilities which provide laboratories and specialized equipment for the study of both the normal and impaired functions of the speech, language, and hearing processes.

Academic Standing

The graduate student whose overall graduate grade point average (GGPA) falls below 3.0 shall be placed on academic probation by the Graduate School. Students are restricted from clinical experiences while on academic probation. The time limit for being removed from probationary status shall be maximum of two consecutive regular semesters. If at this time the student’s overall GGPA is not at least 3.0, the student’s enrollment will be terminated. In addition, students whose semester GGPA falls below 3.0 for two consecutive regular semesters, will be terminated from the program. Grades of “C” or below are considered failing grades in the CDS graduate program.

Master's Degree Program Leading to Certification in Speech Pathology

The master’s degree requires a minimum of 30 semester hours of acceptable graduate credit (3.0 average), at least 15 semester hours of which are at the 500 level. The program for the M.S. degree is a five semester course of study of approximately 63 to 71 semester hours. Specific course requirements and total number of hours are generally determined by advisement after consultation with the graduate student. The master’s degree also requires that each student either successfully pass a comprehensive examination or successfully complete an approved thesis. Students must select one of the following plans:

Thesis Program: Certification In Speech Pathology

Required Core Courses (30 hours)
  • Speech – 12
  • Language – 9
  • Speech or Language – 6
  • Speech, Language or Hearing – 3
Required Clinical Courses: 29-32 hours
Required Research Tools: 6 hours
Thesis: 3 hours
Total: 68-71 hours
*varies due to student selection of CDS 598 or CDS 597

Comprehensive Examination Program: Certification In Speech Pathology

Required Core Courses: 30 hours

  • Speech – 12
  • Language – 9
  • Speech or Language – 6
  • Speech, Language, or Hearing–3
Required Clinical Courses: 29-32 hours*

*varies depending on selection of CDS 598 or CDS 597

Required Research Tools: 3 hours
Comprehensive Exam: 1 hour
Total: 63-66 hours
*varies due to student selection of CDS 598 or CDS 597

Students may petition the faculty for a master's degree which does not include the clinical courses and does not culminate in eligibility or certification in speech pathology (minimum of 34 required hours).