The M.S. (Master's Degree) education program in speech-language pathology at Western Kentucky University is accredited by the Council on Academic Accreditation in Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association, 2200 Research Boulevard #310, Rockville, Maryland 20850, 800-498-2071 or 301-296-5700. The program is designed to meet the academic and clinical requirements of the American Speech Language and Hearing Association (ASHA), leading to national certification and state licensure.
We are pleased to be able to offer this program in three different formats: residential (on-campus), distance learning - worldwide (full-time), and distance learning worldwide (part-time). The information contained within this page is the same for all formats. The requirements are the same for all formats. The two distance learning formats offer all academic content online with the clinical portions requiring presence on-site. For more information regarding each format of the graduate program click on the relevant links found on the right side of this page.
PROGRAM ADMISSION REQUIREMENTS
Click here for detailed information regarding admission requirements, prerequisite coursework, and how to apply.
The graduate program in Speech Language Pathology is 60 course credits in total. Following are the required courses to complete the graduate program in Speech Language Pathology effective Fall 2014. WKU reserves the right to modify these requirements as necessary.
Core Curriculum (40-43 credit hours; all courses are 3 credit hours except where noted)
SLP 500 Research Methodology in CSD
SLP 501 Early Intervention in Speech Language Pathology
SLP 502 Motor Speech Disorders
SLP 504 Seminar in Child Language
SLP 506 Dysfluency
SLP 507 Aphasia
SLP 508 Voice Disorders
SLP 509 Speech Science
SLP 511 Neurology for Speech and Language
SLP 512 Seminar in Phonology
SLP 513 Cognitive Linguistic Disorders
SLP 514 Dysphagia
SLP 515 Rehab Audiology
*SLP 518 Advanced AAC (Alternative and Augmentative Communication Modalities) - if a student demonstrates competency in this area from an undergraduate course then the student is not required to complete this course but must complete a 3 credit elective in place of this course
SLP 579 Professional Issues (1 credit hour)
Clinical Courses (8 credit hours) - Click on Clinical Internship and Clinical Externship links in the right column for more information
SLP 588 Clinical Methods in Speech-Language Pathology (1 credit hour. This course is required of all students in distance learning formats; this course is not required of residential students)
SLP 590 Clinical Internship (1 credit hour. Residential students will enroll in SLP 590 twice while distance students will enroll in SLP 590 once.)
SLP 591 Clinical Externship (will enroll 3 times at 2 credit hours each or 2 times at 3 credit hours each)
Approved Electives (9-12 credit hours must be completed)
Transferring Graduate Credits
The Graduate School will allow up to 12 graduate credits from other accredited institutions. An official transcript showing a grade of B or better in the course with a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or better is required. All graduate transfer credit must be approved by the department's Committee to Evaluate Coursework. A syllabus must be presented to firstname.lastname@example.org to be submitted for approval by the committee. All coursework towards the Master of Science in Speech-Language Pathology must be completed within 6 years, therefore, courses taken more than 3-4 years before beginning the program would not transfer.
STATE LICENSURE AND CERTIFICATION
Upon graduation, students will be eligible to apply for the ASHA Certificate of Clinical Competence (CCC). Most settings require the CCC and it is considered the gold standard for employment in speech-language pathology. All states require a license to practice. The state license may be in addition to the CCC. Some states also require teacher certification to work in the schools.
Eligibility for teacher certification is not available as part of the Speech-Language Pathology Graduate Program at WKU. Consequently, students graduating from the Master's program after September 1, 2014 are not eligible for teacher certification in Kentucky. Speech-language pathologists do not need teacher certification to work in Kentucky schools although some districts prefer it.
Students seeking school-based employment in states other than Kentucky should determine if their potential out-of-state employer requires teacher certification eligibility in Kentucky. Some states require that teacher certification applicants be eligible for certification in the state from which the Master's degree was earned. Some states just require that applicants be eligible for the ASHA CCC, while other states do not offer teacher certification for speech-language pathologists. Because of the array of requirements across the country, potential students should decide if the WKU graduate program would meet their needs based on the requirements where employment may be sought. Individual state requirements may be viewed at: http://www.asha.org/advocacy/state/info/
ADDITIONAL GRADUATION REQUIREMENTS
Summative Assessment: Summative evaluations are required by The Graduate School and our accrediting agency. This department uses the PRAXIS exam as the summative evaluation. Students must take and pass the PRAXIS exam in Speech-Language Pathology. The passing score is 162 and meets the ASHA requirement for certification. Effective August 2009, the PRAXIS exam can only be taken during the last semester of the graduate program. PRAXIS exams taken before this period will not be accepted as the summative evaluation required for graduation. Students who do not pass the PRAXIS exam must enroll in a matriculation course until the successfully passing the exam. The last 4 months is defined as:
- If graduating in Spring: January 15 - May 15
- If graduating in Summer: April 15 - August 15
- If graduating in Fall: August 15 - December 15
Final Portfolio: Each student will complete a portfolio during the last semester of coursework. The portfolio is comprised of clinical goal statements and reflection statements completed throughout the clinical experiences.
Clinical Hours: A minimum of 400 clinical hours are required in order to graduate. See Clinical Internship and Externship links to the right of this page for additional information.
Knowledge and Skills Acquisition: All students must demonstrate that they are competent in the knowledge and skills as defined by the 2014 ASHA Standards. This will be measured by instructors and supervisors throughout the program. The competencies will be kept in a database called CALIPSO that students will be able to access and track as they complete. CALIPSO is a website that will also track additional information required during the graduate program. There is a one time student access fee of $85.
Forms: The following forms are required by The Graduate School during your course of study:
Program of Study: This program form for Master's level students details your plan of study. The Graduate School checks this against what you have completed before you can graduate. The form must be completed with your advisor prior to completion of 12 credit hours.
Application for Graduation. Due after completion of 18 hours coursework.
Comprehensive Exam/Capstone Completion: Due during the last semester once the PRAXIS examination has been completed. Completed by student advisor.
The Department will not issue letters or sign forms stating a student has completed the program until the diploma is awarded by Western Kentucky University.
COMPUTER SYSTEM REQUIREMENTS
The Communication Sciences and Disorders Department at WKU uses Adobe Connect Pro for most (if not all) of the on-line courses and web-enhanced courses. To be able to participate fully in these classes students should have the following computer hardware and software, along with DSL/Cable/or T1 internet connection (dial-up service is not acceptable) at a minimum:
Minimum Technology Requirements
Windows Operating System
- 1.4GHz Intel® Pentium® 4 or faster processor (or equivalent) for Microsoft® Windows® XP, Windows 7 or Windows 8; 2GHz Pentium 4 or faster processor (or equivalent) for Windows Vista®
- Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8
- 512MB of RAM (1GB recommended) for Windows XP, Windows 7 or Windows 8; 1GB of RAM (2GB recommended) for Windows Vista
- Microsoft Internet Explorer 7, 8, 9, 10; Mozilla Firefox; Google Chrome
- Adobe® Flash® Player 10.3
Mac Operating System
- 1.83GHz Intel Core Duo or faster processor
- 512MB of RAM (1GB recommended)
- Mac OS X, 10.5, 10.6, 10.7.4, 10.8
- No Adobe Connect Add-in support for Mac OS X 10.5 (Leopard). Users on Leopard can attend meetings in the browser.*
- Mozilla Firefox; Apple Safari; Google Chrome
- Adobe Flash Player 10.3
More Information for Different Formats of Graduate Program - Please read all information to the left before proceeding to one of the following links:
Clinical Experience Information
How Do I Apply to the Graduate Program in SLP?
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