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DePaul University’s Speech Language Pathology Master of Science degree program will begin taking prospective student applications on July 15, 2020 via the Communication Science Disorders CAS application system: https://csdcas.liaisoncas.com/applicant-ux/#/login Offers will not be made until Spring 2021 following the site visit from the Council on Academic Accreditation (CAA). The inaugural class will matriculate Autumn 2021.
The Master of Science degree in Speech Language Pathology (MS-SLP) at DePaul University is a comprehensive program that offers a balanced, three-part curriculum to prepare future Speech Language Pathologists (SLPs) to work with both children and adults across the full range of communication disorders. Course elements are designed to imbue students with the knowledge base pertinent to the field, while simultaneously fostering the critical thinking, problem solving, and self-confidence that contributes to effective independent clinical practice. Further, students will develop empathy and compassion, the hallmark traits of a master clinician. The curriculum includes both didactic and clinical requirements for graduation. A total of 102 quarter hours is required for the MS-SLP degree (106 quarter credits with the optional thesis). The three curricular parts are described below:
Academic Curriculum: The academic curriculum includes basic science and research coursework, in addition to courses that focus on specific communication disorders. The American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA) has established a minimum of knowledge and skills required for the Certificate of Clinical Competence (ASHA Certification Standards, 2017). Specific academic coursework is required that addresses the following:
- the discipline of communication sciences and disorders;
- basic human communication and swallowing processes, including the appropriate biological, neurological, acoustic, psychological, developmental, and linguistic and cultural bases;
- the ability to integrate information pertaining to normal and abnormal human development across the life span;
- etiology and characteristics of various communication and swallowing disorders, identification procedures, and treatment approaches;
- knowledge of the nature of speech, language, hearing, and communication disorders and differences, and swallowing disorders, including the etiologies, characteristics, anatomical/physiological, acoustic, psychological, developmental, and linguistic and cultural correlates.
Students must demonstrate specific knowledge in the following areas: speech sound production; fluency; voice, resonance, and motor speech; receptive and expressive language; social aspects of communication, including pragmatics; communication impairments related to cognition; augmentative and alternative communication; hearing and aural rehabilitation; swallowing and feeding.
Research Curriculum: Students will learn about basic research methods within the discipline, will explore the evidence base of speech-language pathology and related professions, and will apply knowledge gained to clinical practices by completing a comprehensive literature review. Students can also elect to complete research that culminates in a master's thesis. A thesis will require an additional 4 credits for a total of 106 credits required for graduation.
Clinical Curriculum: According to the ASHA certification standards (2017), students must complete at least 400 hours of supervised clinical experience with individuals who present a variety of communication disorders across the age range and from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds. Students will engage in 4 quarters of clinical practica at the DePaul University Clinic. The clinic will accept clients from the community ranging in age from young children through adults and with a variety of communication and swallowing disorders to provide our SLP students with a breath of clinical experiences. In addition, each student will complete two advanced practica of at least 10 weeks duration. These will involve full-time work in an educational facility, hospital or clinic.
|Program Requirements||Quarter Hours|
|Total hours required||102-106|
Students will be able to:
- Design appropriate evaluations for a variety of speech and language clients and disorders.
- Create intervention plans with measurable and achievable goals to meet speech and language clients’ needs.
- Use evidence-based treatment strategies to support clinical decision making.
- Evaluate speech and language clients’ progress to determine treatment outcomes.
|SLP 400||INTERPROFESIONAL EDUCATION||2|
|SLP 401||NEUROGENIC BASIS OF COMMUNICATION DISORDERS||4|
|SLP 402||CULTURAL AND LINGUISTIC DIVERSITY IN SPEECH AND LANGUAGE DEVELOPMENT AND DISORDERS||3|
|SLP 403||PROFESSIONAL ISSUES AND ETHICS IN SPEECH-LANGUAGE PATHOLOGY||3|
|SLP 410||RESEARCH METHODS||3|
|SLP 411||TOPICS IN RESEARCH FOR SLPS: EBP||2|
|SLP 420||SPEECH SOUND DISORDERS||4|
|SLP 421||LANGUAGE DISORDERS IN EARLY CHILDHOOD||4|
|SLP 422||LANGUAGE DISORDERS IN SCHOOL-AGE POPULATIONS||4|
|SLP 423||AUTISM & OTHER DEVELOPMENTAL DISORDERS||4|
|SLP 424||LANGUAGE, LITERACY & LEARNING||4|
|SLP 432||ACQUIRED NEUROLINGUISTIC AND NEUROCOGNITIVE DISORDERS||4|
|SLP 433||MOTOR SPEECH DISORDER||4|
|SLP 440||VOICE AND RESONANCE DISORDERS||4|
|SLP 441||FLUENCY DISORDERS||4|
|SLP 442||AUGMENTATIVE AND ALTERNATIVE COMMUNICATION ACROSS THE LIFESPAN||3|
|SLP 450||SPECIAL TOPICS||3-9|
|SLP 480||CLINICAL METHODS IN SPEECH-LANGUAGE PATHOLOGY||3|
|SLP 481||CLINICAL PRACTICUM I||4|
|SLP 482||CLINICAL PRACTICUM II||4|
|SLP 483||CLINICAL PRACTICUM III||4|
|SLP 484||CLINICAL PRACTICUM IV||4|
|SLP 485||EXTERNSHIP: SCHOOL PRACTICUM||8|
|SLP 486||EXTERNSHIP: MEDICAL PRACTICUM||8|
Speech Language Pathology Program Graduate Academic Student Handbook
Admissions Procedures and Requirements
Professionals in speech-language pathology begin the licensing and certification process by obtaining a Master’s degree in the discipline. DePaul University offers this degree as a Master of Science degree in Speech Language Pathology (M.S. SLP). Prospective graduate program applicants are required to hold a bachelor’s degree in speech language pathology or the equivalent. Students with backgrounds including communication sciences and disorders, education, health-related professions, biomedical sciences, and psychology are encouraged to apply. The following are graduate admission requirements for DePaul University Speech Language Pathology (SLP) Program:
- Completion of a baccalaureate degree from a regionally-accredited institution in either
- Communication Sciences and Disorders (CSD), including the courses listed below; or
- An area other than CSD, with completion of the prerequisite coursework listed below (see below). A minimum GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale in the undergraduate major is required.
- Three (3) letters of recommendation who can comment on the academic, clinical, and professional experiences of the applicant.
- A completed Communication Science and Disorders Centralized Application Service (CSDCAS) application, including academic history, personal essays, and extracurricular/volunteer experience. Once a student’s file is complete and reviewed by CSDCAS, the SLP program Admissions Committee will review it to ensure that all prerequisite courses have been completed.
- Official transcripts from every college or university attended (mailed to CSDCAS). If currently attending college, most recently completed quarter grades must be included.
- An interview with faculty (by invitation only).
- Commitment to abide by the DePaul University Drug-Free Workplace and Substance Abuse Policy.
- Passage of the DePaul University criminal background check.
- Proof of CPR certification through completion of a healthcare provider course certified by the American Heart Association.
Prerequisites for Admission:
Students will be required to complete the following prerequisites (see below) to be considered into the Speech-Language Pathology program.
Speech Language Pathology Courses:
- Anatomy and Physiology of the Speech & Hearing Mechanism
- Introduction to Audiology
- Introduction to Communication Sciences and Disorders
- Normal Child Language Development
- Speech Science
- Speech Sound Disorders (Articulation and Phonology)
Observation Hours: 25 hours
Additional Course Requirements: (per the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association Standard IV-A)
- One course in the biological sciences (human or animal biology, such as biology, human anatomy and physiology, neuroanatomy and neurophysiology, human genetics, or veterinary science)
- One course in the physical sciences (physics or chemistry)
- One course in social/behavioral sciences (psychology, sociology, anthropology, or public health)
- A statistics course (a stand-alone course)
Strongly Recommended Courses:
- Aural Rehabilitation (required for ASHA certification)
- Methods of Teaching Learners with Exceptionalities (required for an Illinois Professional Educator’s License)
Please note that simply meeting these criteria is not a guarantee of admission. As is the case with most graduate programs in speech-language pathology, admission is highly competitive.
The M.S. SLP prepares students for entry into the profession of speech-language pathology. This assertion is based on the program’s adherence to Council of Academic Accreditation (CAA) standards which outline a comprehensive list of knowledge and skills for successful clinical practice. The Knowledge and Skills Acquisition (KASA) is the Program’s roadmap with respect to development of experiences for each individual student. The Department standards for graduate student performance are in keeping with College standards for graduate education.
CAA Standards (2020): https://www.asha.org/Certification/2020-SLP-Certification-Standards/
ASHA Certification Handbook (2018): https://www.asha.org/uploadedFiles/SLP-Certification-Handbook.pdf
Clinical Education / Practicum
Detail regarding policies governing the process of clinical education may be found in the DePaul University SLP Program Clinic Handbook. Enrollment in clinical practicum is required for all quarters throughout the program. Each student must have 25 clock hours of authorized observation signed by a licensed speech-language pathologist who holds the Certificate of Clinical Competence (CCC) in Speech-Language Pathology from the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA). The observation requirement must be completed prior to any student clinical assignment.
Student Assessment of Knowledge and Skills
Each course offering in the curriculum has been designed to provide students with knowledge and skills requisite for functioning as a speech-language pathologist. The knowledge and skills are aligned with learning outcome statements. These statements are found in each course syllabus, including those for clinical practicum. Outcomes are consistent with and follow the numbering of the ASHA 2020 Standards for the Certificate of Clinical Competence in Speech-Language Pathology.
The ASHA Standards Assessment Form is completed for each student in each class or clinical experience every quarter by rating performance as either “met,” “emerging” or “remediate”.
The CALIPSO management system is employed to track student learning experiences, following the KASA outline.
Definitions of Terms (KASA)
- Met: Student has demonstrated knowledge in this standard that is commensurate with expectations for speech-language pathologists who will be beginning their Clinical Fellowship. Clinical skills will be considered “met” if they are appropriate for a given student’s clinical experience level.
- In Progress: Student has demonstrated progress towards the objective, but not enough to meet it. Ratings of emerging do not count positively towards the completion of an ASHA standard.
- In Remediation: Student has not demonstrated satisfactory progress towards the objective. This rating indicates “not passing”. Any student on track to receive a “remediate” rating should meet with the instructor responsible for the content (academic or clinical) to discuss the development of a remediation plan. Instructors are encouraged to recommend remediation as soon as problems arise during the quarter, to avoid the need for plans that extend beyond the time window. Plans should be developed between the instructor of record, the student and the Program Director.
CALIPSO Tracking System
The Department of Speech Language Pathology at DePaul University utilizes a secure, on-line program to track clinical experiences: Clinical Assessment of Learning, Inventory of Performance, and Streamlined Office Operations (CALIPSO). This system also enables students to maintain an electronic portfolio and manage a variety of external documents. It allows the Director of Clinical Education to maintain a comprehensive database of clinical sites and instructors. Students will have access to this system throughout their course of graduate studies and then continuing for three years after graduation to allow and ensure access to their clinical hours. Students will be trained prior to accessing the CALIPSO system.
Remediation plans are designed to improve a student’s knowledge and skills in a specific area judged to fall below an acceptable level of minimum competence. Three scenarios can result in the implementation of a remediation plan. A remediation plan will be automatically implemented whenever a student receives a score of “remediate” from any instructor or supervisor. A remediation plan may be instituted if a student receives either multiple scores of “emerging” within an individual experience, or multiple scores of “emerging” on the same ASHA standard. The decision to implement a remediation plan under these circumstances will be made jointly by the instructor(s) who gave the “emerging” scores and the Program Director.
A student may request that a remediation plan be developed for scores of “emerging” that did not already result in a plan. The decision to implement a remediation plan under this circumstance must also be approved by the instructor(s) and the Program Director. This is to be based on the impact that receiving “emerging” will have on the student’s successful completion of the program in a timely manner. For example, a remediation plan may be implemented if few or no future opportunities are available for that standard to be addressed. A remediation plan may not be approved if there are many future prospects for completion of the standard.
If a remediation plan is necessary, the following steps will take place:
- The Program Director will meet with the instructor(s) involved including academic and clinical instructors. Students will be involved in these discussions to facilitate successful remediation.
- The plan will outline the activities and/or experiences the student must complete to demonstrate adequate improvement in the area of concern. This plan must include measurable goals that can be completed within one quarter, specification of persons who will be responsible for monitoring and implementing plans to achieve each goal, and specific consequences due to the student’s failure to meet the plan. The development of the plan is a shared responsibility between students and faculty.
- The student, Program Director, and Director of Clinical Education (if applicable) will each sign and receive a copy of the plan. If other faculty or clinical instructors are responsible for any portion of the plan, they will also receive a copy.
In the case of academic needs, the faculty instructor(s) involved in identifying areas of need typically will serve as mentor(s) towards the completion of the plan, unless stated otherwise by the Program Director.
The ASHA Standards Assessment Form will be updated to include a “met” in the appropriate row(s) of a new column entitled “remediation.” Columns indicating that a “remediate” was received are not expunged from the record.
Completion of the Master’s Degree
A well-balanced, unified, and complete program of study is required, including evidence of successful achievement of both academic and clinical skill development. The program utilizes a cohort model, suggesting that all students move through the curriculum at a similar rate. The M.S. SLP degree in speech-language pathology requires successful completion of a minimum of 102 graduate credits. Speech-language pathology students are also required to complete a written comprehensive examination. Failure to complete the program requirements will result in forfeiture of degree eligibility unless the program recommends that the student complete a retake. If a retake or an extension is granted, the student must complete it by the end of the following quarter.
Speech-language pathology students are required to successfully submit the PRAXIS exam results using the DePaul SLP Program code.
Comprehensive exams are a degree requirement for the M.S. SLP and must be completed in the spring quarter prior to graduation. Students will have a maximum of 4 hours to complete the exam. The purpose of these examination is to evaluate the student’s knowledge of concepts, content, procedures and terminology from their graduate studies as well as their ability to apply this knowledge. This examination is designed to be summative in nature and to address the nine knowledge/ skill areas identified by the Council on Academic Accreditation in Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology. This written examination consists of 100 multiple-choice questions that will include items from the nine major ASHA knowledge areas. Preparation for the multiple-choice section should include student review of the Praxis study guide.