Master of Arts in Speech-Language Pathology
The master's degree in speech-language pathology is designed to produce highly skilled clinicians seeking to enter the field and is typically completed in five full-time semesters (including a summer semester). The program length may vary, for example, for the student requiring prerequisites to be completed or one pursuing additional thesis or course work. A master's degree from KU will, in most circumstances, satisfy the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association's certification standards for continuing on to the clinical fellowship year. A certificate of clinical competence in speech-language pathology is awarded upon completion of a successful clinical fellowship.
Admission to Graduate Studies
An applicant seeking to pursue graduate study in the College may be admitted as either a degree-seeking or non-degree seeking student. Policies and procedures of Graduate Studies govern the process of Graduate admission. These may be found in the Graduate Studies section of the online catalog.
Please consult the Departments & Programs section of the online catalog for information regarding program-specific admissions criteria and requirements. Special admissions requirements pertain to Interdisciplinary Studies degrees, which may be found in the Graduate Studies section of the online catalog.
Admission to the M.A. Program
Prospective students are admitted to the M.A. program for the summer or fall semester. The application deadline and a full list of required application materials can be found on the Eligibility and Requirements and How to Apply pages of our Department’s website.
Eligibility criteria for admission to the M.A. program follow Graduate Studies’ admission policy. To be considered for admission in the program, a student must hold a bachelor’s degree. Non-native speakers of English must meet English proficiency requirements.
Ideally students will have completed an undergraduate degree in speech pathology or a related field. Individuals who have not completed prerequisite coursework may apply and be admitted on an exceptional basis if they have exceptionally strong academic credentials. For a full list of the prerequisite course work please see our prerequisite page.
Requirements for the M.A. Degree with a Major in Speech-Language Pathology
Students with undergraduate degrees in other fields (e.g., psychology, linguistics) typically need to complete undergraduate prerequisite coursework in communication sciences and disorders before applying and/or being admitted to a graduate program in speech-language pathology or audiology.
Prerequisite Course Work for the MA SLP Graduate Program
- An acceptable bachelor’s degree
- Coursework in speech-language-hearing must include the following: Physics of Speech: Principles of Speech Science; Principles of Hearing Science; Fundamentals of Clinical Phonetics; Language Analysis Lab; Language Development; Introduction to Audiological Assessment and Rehabilitation; Introduction to Speech-Language Pathology; Research Methods in Speech-Language-Hearing; Statistics.
- Additional requirements for ASHA Certification include coursework in biological sciences, physical sciences, and social/behavioral sciences. Courses in biological and physical sciences specifically related to communication sciences and disorders cannot be applied to this requirement.
The program requires 34 credit hours of experiences for breadth and an additional 16 hours for depth. All of these credit hours are at the 700-level or above, with the exception of the Advanced Elective hours. Advanced Electives can include any approved graduate course.
|Required Graduate Experiences for Breadth|
|SPLH 888||Multicultural Considerations in Speech-Language-Hearing I||1|
|SPLH 889||Multicultural Considerations in Speech-Language-Hearing II||1|
|SPLH 860||Evaluation of Speech and Language||2|
|SPLH 862||Clinical Processes 1||2|
|SPLH 864||Advanced Clinical Practice in Speech-Language Pathology 2||7|
|SPLH 868||Professional Issues 3||2|
|Research experience (thesis or nonthesis option)||3|
|SPLH electives (8 seminars, 2 credit hours each)||16|
|Required Graduate Experiences for Depth|
|SPLH 866||Field Study in Speech-Language Pathology||5|
|Advanced electives (SPLH, outside department, or thesis)||6|
|Second field study or fourth practicum experiences||5|
This course is taken twice for a total of 2 credit hours.
This course is taken more than once for a total of 7 credit hours
This course is taken more than once for a total of 2 credit hours
Students should view the student handbook for a list of electives and should consult their faculty advisor to determine elective coursework selection.
- Complete a formative assessment according to the timeline and expectations outlined in the student handbook.
Summative (or optional Thesis) Exam:
- Students must pass the oral summative exam (including the thesis defense if applicable). Potential outcomes include honors, pass, revision, or fail. Please see the student handbook for criteria on revised exams. If an outcome is recorded as a fail, a student may re-take the exam. If a student fails the exam twice, the program will consider the student as making unsatisfactory progress and unable to continue in the program.
- If students complete an optional thesis as part of their summative exam, students must enroll in a minimum of 4 thesis credits (SPLH 899). These thesis credits can count towards the required research requirement.
For more information or to contact the program, please visit the IPCD website
The master's degree in speech-language pathology signifies the holder will satisfy the academic and practicum requirements as stated by the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association to be eligible to continue on to the clinical fellowship year. It follows that graduates must have the knowledge and skills to practice in the area of speech-language pathology. Therefore, all individuals admitted to the University of Kansas Intercampus Program in Communicative Disorders must meet the following abilities and expectations with or without accommodation(s). KU is an AA/EO/Title XI institution.
NOTE: Reasonable accommodations will be considered and may be made to qualified students who disclose a disability, so long as such accommodation does not significantly alter the essential requirements of the curriculum and the training program, or significantly affect the safety of patient care. Students who disclose that they have a disability are considered for the program if they are otherwise qualified. Qualified students with a disability who wish to request accommodations should provide appropriate documentation of disability and submit a request for accommodation to one of the following offices:
Academic Accommodations Services
3901 Rainbow Boulevard, MS 4029
Kansas City, KS 66160
913-945-7035; 711 TTY
Student Access Center
1450 Jayhawk Blvd., Room 22
Lawrence, KS 66045
785-864-4064; 711 TTY
The culminating activity in the preparation of a speech-language pathologist is clinical reasoning. Therefore, a candidate for the master’s degree must be able to make correct observations and have the skills of measurement, calculation, reasoning, analysis, and synthesis.
All students admitted to the KU Intercampus Program in Communicative Disorders must be able to meet the following requirements and expectations with or without accommodation(s).
- Observe demonstrations and learn from experiences in the classroom, laboratory, and clinical situations.
- Carry out speech/language/hearing assessments and intervention strategies/techniques including the operation of complex, electronic instrumentation. Diagnosis, assessment, and intervention of speech/language/hearing problems typically necessitates the functional use of the senses of vision, hearing, and touch such as palpating certain areas of the patient’s head and neck.
- Comprehend text, numbers, images and graphs.
- Observe and respond to subtle cues of patient’s moods, temperament, and social behavior.
- Perform actions requiring coordination of both gross and fine muscular movement, equilibrium and use of tactile, hearing, and visual senses.
- Respond quickly in clinic situations, not only for safety, but also therapeutically.
- Travel to numerous clinical sites for practical experience.
- Use an electronic keyboard to operate instruments and to calculate, record, evaluate, and transmit information.
- Be able to share and to elicit information from patients/clients, supervisor, peers and other health professionals verbally and in a recorded format.
- Effectively, confidently, and sensitively converse with patients and their families.
- Comprehend technical and professional materials.
- Prepare papers, produce reports, and complete documentation for patient records.
- Assimilate information from written sources (texts, journals, medical/school records).
- Take paper, computer, and laboratory examinations and prepare scholarly papers.
- Demonstrate judgment in the classroom, laboratory, and clinic situations that shows the intellect and emotional health necessary to make mature, sensitive, and effective decisions in the following areas:
- relationships with professors, supervisors, peers, and patients/clients
- professional and ethical behavior
- effectiveness of diagnostic, assessment, and intervention strategies.
- Demonstrate an understanding of the rationale and justification for one’s performance.
- Critically evaluate one’s own performance and be flexible toward change to promote professional and clinical process.
- Recognize and correct behaviors disruptive to classroom teaching, research, and patient care.
- Manage the use of time to complete clinical and academic assignments within realistic constraints.
- Recognize potentially hazardous materials, equipment, and situations and proceed in a manner to minimize risk of injury to those in the area.
- Make correct observations and have the problem solving skills necessary for measurement, calculation, reasoning, analysis, and synthesis.