Speech, Language and Hearing Sciences, M.S.

Saint Louis University offers a Master of Science in Speech, Language and Hearing Sciences designed to prepare professionals to provide evidence-based, high-quality services to persons with communication and swallowing disorders. A focus of the program is to develop clinicians who are prepared to serve culturally and linguistically diverse populations across the life span. 

To apply to the graduate program, students must have a bachelor's degree in communication sciences and disorders or speech-language pathology. Students interested in the communication sciences and disorders graduate degree with a bachelor's degree in a different discipline can complete the SLU SLHS Leveling Option before applying.

Program Highlights

  • SLU's Master of Science in speech, language and hearing sciences is a two-year, six-semester program that starts in the summer semester.
  • The typical class size is 30 to 40 students.
  • Over the past three years, the program’s graduation rate has been 97%, while the Praxis pass rate and the employment rate of the graduating class is 99%.
  • Graduate students will complete a clinical practicum in each term.

Curriculum Overview

All graduate students must complete 61 credits, including a required clinical practicum each term. Research students will also complete a thesis for six elective credits.

Students must enroll in five terms (semester or summer) of graduate course credit clinical practicum during their study. Additionally, six credits of off-campus clinical practice are completed during the last semester of study.

CSD Graduate Handbook

Clinical and Research Opportunities

A major strength of SLU's M.S. in speech, language and hearing sciences is the wide variety of clinical practicum experiences available to graduate students. The department has strong working relationships with hospitals, schools, rehabilitation facilities and community clinics in St. Louis and surrounding areas.

Clinical Practicum Sites

Students will experience at least two separate off-campus clinical placements, often obtaining 50 clinical hours or more at each site. Additionally, students gain experience in SLU's Speech-Language and Hearing Clinic. Students are ready for a full-time internship during their last semester, consisting of placements in both medical and educational settings. Students typically obtain considerably more than the minimum clock hours required by the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association and are well-prepared to begin their professional careers.

Careers

Graduates with a have gone on to careers at public and private schools, hospitals, rehabilitation centers, nursing homes, home health agencies, clinics, private practices and universities. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics rates Speech-language pathology as one of the fastest-growing professions in the country — it’s predicted to grow 25% by 2029. The median annual salary for a speech-language pathologist in 2020 was $80,480.

Admission Requirements

Applicants must have an undergraduate degree in communication sciences and disorders or have successfully completed the prerequisite courses in the field.

Individuals with a bachelor's degree in a different discipline are not eligible for admission into the graduate program until completion of the undergraduate prerequisite courses. Students may be eligible for admission into the speech, language and hearing sciences leveling program.

Students must meet clinical practicum eligibility requirements for participation in the required clinical practicum.

Application Requirements

  • Application through CSDCAS (The SLU CSDCAS code is 4621.)
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • Résumé
  • Professional goal statement
  • Applicants must possess a minimum 3.0 cumulative GPA and 3.0 GPA in the major
  • Visit (encouraged)

Requirements for International Students

All admission policies and requirements for domestic students apply to international students. International students must also meet the following additional requirements:

  • Demonstrate English Language Proficiency
  • Financial documents are required to complete an application for admission and be reviewed for admission and merit scholarships. 
  • Proof of financial support that must include:
    • A letter of financial support from the person(s) or sponsoring agency funding the student's time at Saint Louis University
    • A letter from the sponsor's bank verifying that the funds are available and will be so for the duration of the student's study at the University
  • Academic records, in English translation, of students who have undertaken postsecondary studies outside the United States must include:
    • Courses taken and/or lectures attended
    • Practical laboratory work
    • The maximum and minimum grades attainable
    • The grades earned or the results of all end-of-term examinations
    • Any honors or degrees received.

WES and ECE transcripts are accepted.

Assistantship Application Deadline

Students who want to be considered for an assistantship must submit their application by Feb. 1.

Review Process

The department admissions committee will begin the review of the applications after the Feb. 1 deadline. Each application and supporting materials are comprehensively reviewed for admission consideration.

Students who are offered admission to the program will receive an assistantship application at the time of their acceptance notification.

The Department of Speech, Language and Hearing Sciences adheres to the national deadline of April 15 to extend offers of admission to applicants as set forth by the American Speech-Language-Hearing AssociationCouncil of Academic Programs in Communication Sciences and Disorders and the Council of Graduate Schools.

Leveling Option

The leveling option is designed for students who wish to pursue a graduate degree in speech-language pathology or audiology and already have a baccalaureate degree in a different discipline. The leveling option's curriculum (33 credits) is based on the Department of Speech, Language and Hearing Sciences undergraduate curriculum. It is designed to provide the courses necessary to apply to a graduate program in one of these professions. 

Curriculum Plan

Scholarships and Financial Aid

For priority consideration for graduate assistantship, apply by Feb. 1. 

For more information, visit the student financial services office online at https://www.slu.edu/financial-aid/index.php.

Accreditation

For more information about the SLU speech, language, and hearing sciences program's student outcomes data (completion rates, Praxis exam pass rates, and employment rates), CAA complaint policy and accreditation information, please see the student outcome data and accreditation information below.

View Student Outcome Data and Accreditation Information (PDF) 

  1. Graduates will be able to demonstrate compassionate ethical behavior during clinical practice.
  2. Graduates will be able to apply clinical reasoning to effectively address communication needs across the lifespan.
  3. Graduates will be able to demonstrate effective interactions with others during academic discourse.
  4. Graduates will be able to fulfill clinical responsibilities in a professional manner.
  5. Graduates will be able to demonstrate the ability to evaluate appropriate information from various sources to effectively implement evidence-based practice.

Students in the speech, language and hearing sciences master's program take the following courses:

Required Courses
SLHS 5010Clinical Practicum Lecture0-1
SLHS 5030Student Teaching in Speech, Language, and Hearing Sciences6
SLHS 5050Research for the Clinician2
SLHS 5450Speech Sound Disorders in Children3
SLHS 5510Social Communication Development and Disorders3
SLHS 5530Augmentative and Alternative Communication2
SLHS 5550Early Childhood Language Disorders3
SLHS 5560School-Age Language Disorders3
SLHS 5600Fluency Disorders3
SLHS 5630Dysphagia3
SLHS 5700Voice Disorders3
SLHS 5720Neurogenic Communication Disorders in Adults3
SLHS 5760Motor Speech Disorders3
SLHS 5770Multicultural Assessment and Management of Communication Disorders2
SLHS 5800Professional Issues in Speech-Language Pathology2
SLHS 5820Cognitive Communication Disorders3
Electives
Select four credits from the following electives or six credits in thesis:
Counseling for Speech Language Pathology
Language Based Literacy Disorders
Cleft Palate and Craniofacial Anomalies
Advanced Audiology
Institute in Comm Disorders
Thesis Research
Total Credits44-45

Roadmaps are recommended semester-by-semester plans of study for programs and assume full-time enrollment unless otherwise noted.  

Courses and milestones designated as critical (marked with !) must be completed in the semester listed to ensure a timely graduation. Transfer credit may change the roadmap.

This roadmap should not be used in the place of regular academic advising appointments. All students are encouraged to meet with their advisor/mentor each semester.  Requirements, course availability and sequencing are subject to change.

Plan of Study Grid
Year One
SummerCredits
SLHS 4750 Neurobases of Communication (if not taken as undergraduate student) 3
SLHS 5010 Clinical Practicum Lecture 1
SLHS 5011 Clinical Lab 1
SLHS 5600 Fluency Disorders 3
SLHS 5710 Cleft Palate and Craniofacial Anomalies (Elective) 2
SLHS 5890 Institute in Comm Disorders (Elective) 2
 Credits9-12
Fall
SLHS 4400 Aural Rehabilitation (Required if not taken as undergraduate student) 3
SLHS 5010 Clinical Practicum Lecture 0-1
SLHS 5012 Practicum - Campus Clinic 1
SLHS 5050 Research for the Clinician 2
SLHS 5450 Speech Sound Disorders in Children 3
SLHS 5550 Early Childhood Language Disorders 3
SLHS 5630 Dysphagia 3
 Credits12-16
Spring
SLHS 5010 Clinical Practicum Lecture 1
SLHS 5012 Practicum - Campus Clinic 1
SLHS 5510 Social Communication Development and Disorders 3
SLHS 5560 School-Age Language Disorders 3
SLHS 5720 Neurogenic Communication Disorders in Adults 3
SLHS 5770 Multicultural Assessment and Management of Communication Disorders 2
SLHS 5880 Advanced Audiology (Elective) 2
 Credits15
Year Two
Summer
SLHS 5010 Clinical Practicum Lecture 1
SLHS 5012 Practicum - Campus Clinic 1
SLHS 5530 Augmentative and Alternative Communication 2
 Credits4
Fall
SLHS 5010 Clinical Practicum Lecture 1
SLHS 5015 Practicum - Offsite Clinic 2
SLHS 5700 Voice Disorders 3
SLHS 5760 Motor Speech Disorders 3
SLHS 5800 Professional Issues in Speech-Language Pathology 2
SLHS 5820 Cognitive Communication Disorders 3
SLHS 5580 Language Based Literacy Disorders 2
 Credits16
Spring
SLHS 5030
Student Teaching in Speech, Language, and Hearing Sciences
or Clinical Externship
6
 Credits6
 Total Credits62-69

Program Notes

Electives: Six credits of electives are required. Thesis credits meet the elective requirements.

All graduate students must complete 61 credits: 44 academic credits and 17 clinical practicum credits. Students are required to enroll in one of the clinical practicum courses every semester.

It is a requirement of the speech, language and hearing sciences graduate program that all students complete a course in Aural Rehabilitation and Neurological Bases of Communication. Students who have not had these courses as an undergraduate will need to take them in the graduate program in addition to the master’s program requirements.

Leveling Program

Plan of Study Grid
Year One
FallCredits
SLHS 2000 Phonetics 2
SLHS 2200 Anatomy and Physiology of the Speech Mechanism 3
SLHS 3400 Hearing Science 3
SLHS 3700 Speech and Language Development 3
SLHS 4300 Clinical Methods 3
SLHS 4350 Professional Writing & Documentation for the SLP and AuD 1
 Credits15
Spring
SLHS 2400 Foundations of Language 3
SLHS 3200 Speech Science 3
SLHS 4150 Survey of Speech & Language Disorders 3
SLHS 4200 Audiology: Basic Audiometry 3
SLHS 4500 Neurological Basis of Communication 3
SLHS 4650 Counseling 2
 Credits17
 Total Credits32
 

Apply for Admission

Contact Doisy College of Health Sciences:
Julie Miller
Recruitment Specialist
314-977-2570
dchs@health.slu.edu