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Speech and Hearing Sciences

Department Overview

210 Eagleson Hall

Speech and hearing sciences concern the processes and disorders of human communication and swallowing across the life span. This includes the study of typical hearing, speech, and language, cognitive-communication, and swallowing development; anatomy and physiology of speech, hearing, and swallowing; speech acoustics and perception; the nature of language, speech, cognitive-communication, swallowing, and hearing disorders in children and adults; social and cultural aspects of communication disorders; and the clinical processes involved in identification, prevention, and remediation of those disorders.

Undergraduate Program

Adviser
210 Eagleson, Box 354875
(206) 685-7403
shugadv@uw.edu

The Department of Speech and Hearing Sciences offers the following programs of study:

  • The Bachelor of Science degree with a major in speech and hearing sciences
  • An accelerated, fee-based, Bachelor of Science degree with a major in speech and hearing sciences for candidates with an existing bachelor's degree.

Bachelor of Science

Suggested First and Second-Year College Courses: Introductory course in anthropology, public health, psychology, or sociology; introductory biological science course – BIOL 118 recommended; introductory course in physics or chemistry – PHYS 107, PHYS 110, or CHEM 110 recommended; statistics course – STAT 220 or EDPSY 490 recommended.

Department Admission Requirements

Admission is competitive. The admissions committee reviews all applicants based on the following criteria: GPA (minimum 2.50 overall GPA guarantees consideration but not admission); personal statement reflecting an interest in and commitment to speech and hearing sciences; other evidence of a commitment to becoming a speech and hearing sciences major. Students may apply any time after they have earned 75 credits. The application deadline for current UW students is Monday of the third week of the quarter for admission the next quarter; transfer students may apply to the department (if they are at or near junior standing) and to the University concurrently. Admission is for autumn, winter, or spring quarter. Only students admitted to the UW are eligible for admission to the major. Applicants are notified of the department's decision within four weeks. Applications and additional information are available outside 210 Eagleson and on the department's website.

Students who meet admission requirements are eligible for one of two options:

  • Option 1, General Academic, is intended to provide broad perspectives of the discipline, but not to prepare students specifically for careers in clinical speech-language pathology and audiology. It is appropriate for students with interests in education, healthcare, and communication.
  • Option 2, Speech and Hearing Sciences and Disorders, is intended for students interested in graduate study in speech and hearing sciences and clinical speech-language pathology and audiology. (Note that graduate study is required for the professional practice as a speech-language pathologist and audiologist.)

Major Requirements

62-75 credits as follows:

  1. Core Requirements (28 credits): SPHSC 261, SPHSC 302, SPHSC 303, SPHSC 304, SPHSC 320, SPHSC 371, SPHSC 461
  2. Approved 3-5 credit college-level human- or animal-based biological science, anatomy and physiology, neuroanatomy and neurophysiology, human genetics, or veterinary science course. Laboratory component not required. See adviser for approved list.
  3. Approved 3-5 credit college-level psychology, sociology, anthropology, or public health course. See adviser for approved list.
  4. Approved 3-5 credit college-level chemistry or physics course. Laboratory component not required. See adviser for approved list.
  5. Approved 3-5 credit college-level statistics course. See adviser for approved list.
  6. 22-27 credits from an approved option:
    1. Option 1, General Academic: 22 credits as follows:
      1. Minimum 2.00 cumulative GPA in core requirements
      2. 22 credits from the following: SPHSC 305, SPHSC 308, SPHSC 405, SPHYSC 406, SPHSC 425, SPHSC 462, SPHSC 471, SPHSC 481, SPHSC 499 ( 6 credits maximum)
    2. Option 2, Speech and Hearing Sciences and Disorders: 27 credits as follows:
      1. Minimum 3.00 cumulative GPA in core requirements
      2. SPHSC 305, SPHSC 308, SPHSC 405, SPHSC 406, SPHSC 425, SPHSC 471, SPHSC 481
  7. Minimum 2.00 cumulative GPA for all courses applied to the major

Post-baccalaureate Program

The fee-based postbaccalaureate program is designed for individuals who already have a bachelor's degree or an advanced degree in a discipline other than speech and hearing sciences and wish to obtain the necessary academic background to apply directly to a graduate program. This is an intensive program designed to take five quarters with a mandatory summer start. Postbaccalauareate students have matriculated status as they are working toward a second bachelor’s degree in preparation for graduate school.

Admissions Requirements

Postbaccalaureate program admission is based on multiple factors: the overall academic record from the first bachelor's or advanced degree, the personal statement, the letters of recommendation and the perceived commitment to speech, language, and hearing sciences.

Applying is a two-part process. The applicant is responsible for ensuring both the UW Office of Admissions and the Speech and Hearing Sciences Department receive the application materials by the February 15 deadline. Incomplete applications are not processed. Admission to SPHSC is contingent upon admission to UW. See the program website for details on the two-part admission process.

  1. Bachelor’s degree or advanced degree outside the area of speech and hearing sciences
  2. Statement of purpose
  3. All college-level transcripts
  4. Three letters of recommendation sent to the department. The SPHSC recommendation form is available on the department website, depts.washington.edu/sphsc/. However, a letter is acceptable in lieu of the recommendation form. Students should read and fill out the top section of the recommendation form before giving it to the evaluator.

Degree Requirements

Minimum 64 credits as follows:

SPHSC 250, SPHSC 261, SPHSC 302, SPHSC 303, SPHSC 304, SPHSC 305, SPHSC 308, SPHSC 320, SPHSC 371, SPHSC 405, SPHSC 406, SPHSC 425, SPHSC 449, SPHSC 461, SPHSC 471, SPHSC 481

In addition, the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA) requires the following four course requirements for anyone seeking certification in speech-language pathology and audiology. Courses are taken outside the Speech and Hearing Sciences Department, can be any number of credits, and can be taken for a grade or satisfactory/not-satisfactory. If students need to complete these courses prior to graduate school, they can be added to the postbaccalaureate program.

  • Statistics course
  • Biological science course (biology, anatomy & physiology, neuroanatomy & neurophysiology, human genetics, or veterinary science)
  • Physical science course (physics or chemistry)
  • Social or behavioral science course (psychology, sociology, anthropology, or public health)

Continuation Policy

All students must make satisfactory academic progress in the major. Failure to do so results in probation, which can lead to dismissal from the major. For the complete continuation policy, contact the department adviser or refer to the department website.

Student Outcomes and Opportunities

  • Learning Objectives and Expected Outcomes: The graduate (1) has knowledge of the following: mechanisms involved in speech, language, and hearing; societal implications of language differences and of disorders of speech, language, and hearing; opportunities in, and requirements for, careers available to those in the speech and hearing sciences; (2) understands the following: normal acquisition of speech and language; the etiology and nature of communication disorders across the lifespan; principles and procedures for diagnosis and treatment of speech, language, and hearing disorders; the manner in which context (specifically, situation, social/interpersonal, and culture context) influences communication and disorders; social-cultural aspects of communication development and disorders; (3) has the following abilities: to analyze language in terms of its auditory, phonetic, phonological, morphological, and syntactic properties; to utilize strategies for solving scientific problems; to read and understand relevant literature; (4) has experience with a research project
  • Instructional and Research Facilities: classrooms, research laboratories, computer laboratory, and clinic located in the department and in nearby campus buildings
  • Honors Options Available: With College Honors (Completion of Honors Core Curriculum and Departmental Honors); With Honors (Completion of Departmental Honors requirements in the major). See adviser for requirements.
  • Research, Internships, and Service Learning: Faculty welcome undergraduate students into their research labs, offering independent study research opportunities (SPHSC 499), in addition to mentored, year-long honors research projects (SPHSC 498). No formal internship programs offered. See adviser for community-based service learning and internship opportunities.
  • Department Scholarships: None offered
  • Student Organizations/Associations: The National Student Speech Language Hearing Association (NSSLHA) UW chapter, 153 Eagleson Hall.

Graduate Program

Graduate Student Services
Eagleson Hall, Box 354875
(206) 685-7402
shgrad@uw.edu

The department offers four graduate degree programs that equip students to do research, teach at the college and university level, and provide clinical services to the communicatively impaired.

  • The Master of Science in Speech-Language Pathology (MS SLP)
  • The Master of Science in Medical Speech-Languge Pathology (MS MedSLP)
  • The Doctor of Audiology (AuD)
  • The Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

At the MS and AuD level, specific focus is on evidence-based clinical procedures involved in the identification, prevention, and remediation of communication disorders. Students meet all requirements of the Certificate of Clinical Competence (CCC) granted by the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA), the professional, scientific, and credentialing organization for speech-language pathology and audiology professionals.

At the PhD level, the program provides opportunities for development of scholarly and professional competence in various areas of specialization: speech and language acquisition, phonetics, speech production, hearing, hearing development, psychoacoustics, physiological acoustics, speech perception, and assessment and treatment of human communication disorders related to language, speech, and hearing.

Master of Science in Speech-Language Pathology (MS SLP)

Entrance is for autumn quarter only. The department does not accept transfer students, Graduate Non-Matriculated (GNM) applicants, or applicants interested in a non-clinical master’s degree.

Admission Requirements

  1. Complete UW Graduate School application between September 15 and January 15, to include the following:
    1. Department's supplemental application
    2. Unofficial transcripts for all schools attended
    3. Official GRE scores earned within the last five years
    4. Three letters of recommendation
    5. Personal statement
    6. Resume
  2. Minimum 3.00 GPA for the last 90 quarter credit hours of study (60 semester)
  3. English language proficiency
  4. Bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited institution with a major in speech and hearing sciences (communication disorders, communication sciences and disorders, or a similarly named major) or in another major with sufficient undergraduate coursework in speech and hearing sciences (communication disorders, communication sciences and disorders, or a similarly named program)
  5. Prerequisite undergraduate coursework as required by the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association's (ASHA) accreditation standards and guidelines.
    1. Speech and hearing sciences coursework across these areas of knowledge:
      1. Linguistics
      2. Phonetics/language science
      3. Anatomy and physiology of the speech mechanism
      4. Speech and language acquisition/development
      5. Speech and language disorders
      6. Hearing science/nature of sound
      7. The hearing mechanism
      8. Hearing disorders
      9. Audiometry
      10. Aural rehabilitation/management of hearing loss
      11. Social cultural aspects of communication
      12. Principles of assessment
      13. Principles of treatment
    2. Basic science and statistics coursework: one course in each of the following areas:
      1. Biological science (biology, anatomy & physiology, neuroanatomy & neurophysiology, human genetics, or veterinary science)
      2. Social or behavioral science (psychology, sociology, anthropology, or public health)
      3. Physical science (physics or chemistry)
      4. Statistics
  6. Minimum 25 documented, clinical observation hours within the scope of practice of speech-language pathology, under direction of an ASHA-certified speech-language pathologist.

Degree Requirements

Minimum 108 credits

  1. Didactic (57 credits): SPHSC 500, SPHSC 501, SPHSC 506, SPHSC 529, SPHSC 531, SPHSC 532, SPHSC 533, SPHSC 534, SPHSC 535, SPHSC 536, SPHSC 537, SPHSC 538, SPHSC 539, SPHSC 540, SPHSC 565
  2. Clinical (43 credits)
    1. Minimum 43 credits from SPHSC 591, SPHSC 551, SPHSC 552, SPHSC 555, either SPHSC 601 or SPHSC 602. Includes completion of a pre-internship and a full-time internship in a community-based clinical facility.
    2. Minimum 375 clock hours of supervised clinical experience in the practice of speech-language pathology.
  3. Electives: Either adult-emphasis path or pediatric-emphasis path (8 credits)
    1. Adult-emphasis path: one from SPHSC 541, SPHSC 545, SPHSC 546, or SPHSC 548, and two out-of-department elective courses
    2. Pediatric-emphasis path: SPHSC 526, SPHSC 543, SPHSC 550
  4. Thesis (optional): SPHSC 700 (minimum 9 credits)
  5. Additional Requirements: 36 credits of non-clinical practicum work at the 400 level or above. Minimum 18 of these 36 credits in courses numbered 500 and above. Maximum 9 thesis credits at 500 level or above. Completion of requirements for the Certificate of Clinical Competence (CCC) of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association.

Master of Science in Medical Speech-Language Pathology (MS MedSLP)

Entrance is for autumn quarter only. The department does not accept transfer students, Graduate Non-Matriculated (GNM) applicants, or applicants interested in a non-clinical MS degree.

Admission Requirements

  1. Complete UW Graduate School Application between September 15 and January 15, to include the following:
    1. Department's supplemental application
    2. Unofficial transcripts for all schools attended
    3. Official GRE scores earned within the last five years
    4. Three letters of recommendation
    5. Personal statement
  2. Minimum 3.00 GPA for the last 90 quarter credit hours of study (60 semester)
  3. Demonstrated English language proficiency
  4. Bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited institution with a major in speech and hearing sciences (communication disorders, communication sciences and disorders, or a similarly named major) or in another major with sufficient undergraduate coursework in speech and hearing sciences (communication disorders, communication sciences and disorders, or a similarly named program).
  5. Completed prerequisite undergraduate coursework as required by the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association's (ASHA) accreditation standards and guidelines.
    1. Speech and hearing sciences coursework across these areas of knowledge:
      1. Linguistics
      2. Phonetics/language science
      3. Anatomy and physiology of the speech mechanism
      4. Speech and language acquisition/development
      5. Speech and language disorders
      6. Hearing science/nature of sound
      7. The hearing mechanism
      8. Hearing disorders
      9. Audiometry
      10. Aural rehabilitation/management of hearing loss
      11. Social cultural aspects of communication
      12. Principles of assessment
      13. Principles of treatment
    2. Basic science and mathematics coursework. Minimum one course in each of the following areas:
      1. Biological science (biology, anatomy & physiology, neuroanatomy & neurophysiology, human genetics, or veterinary science)
      2. Social or behavioral science (psychology, sociology, anthropology, or public health)
      3. Physical science (physics or chemistry)
      4. Statistics
  6. Minimum 25 documented, clinical observation hours within the scope of practice of speech-language pathology, under direction of an ASHA certified speech-language pathologist.

Degree Requirements

Minimum 114 credits

  1. Didactic (72 credits): SPHSC 500, SPHSC 501, SPHSC 506, SPHSC 507, SPHSC 529, SPHSC 531, SPHSC 532, SPHSC 533, SPHSC 534, SPHSC 535, SPHSC 536, SPHSC 537, SPHSC 538, SPHSC 539, SPHSC 540, SPSHC 541, SPSHC 543, SPSHC 545, SPHSC 546, SPHSC 548, SPHSC 549, SPHSC 565
  2. Clinical (42 credits)
    1. 42 credits of SPHSC 553 and SPHSC 554. Includes a full-time internship in a community-based clinical facility.
    2. Minimum 375 clock hours of supervised clinical experience in the practice of speech-language pathology. Includes completion of a pre-internship and a full-time internship in a community-based clinical facility.
  3. Thesis (optional): SPHSC 700 (minimum 9 credits)
  4. Additional Requirement: 36 credits of non-clinical graduate work at the 400 level or above. Minimum 18 of these 36 quarter credits in courses numbered 500 and above. Maximum 9 thesis credits at the 500 level and above. Satisfactory completion of all didactic and practicum requirements detailed above. Completion of requirements for the Certificate of Clinical Competence (CCC) of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association.

Doctor of Audiology

Entrance is for autumn quarter only. The department does not accept transfer students, Graduate Non-Matriculated (GNM) applicants, or applicants interested in a non-clinical AuD degree.

Admission Requirements

  1. Complete UW Graduate School Application between September 15 and January 15, to include the following:
    1. Departmental's supplemental application
    2. Unofficial Transcripts for all schools attended
    3. Official GRE scores earned within the last five years
    4. Three letters of recommendation
    5. Personal statement
    6. Resume
  2. Minimum 3.00 GPA for last 90 quarter credit hours of study (60 semester)
  3. Demonstrated English language proficiency
  4. Bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited institution

Undergraduate Coursework: Foundational coursework is required for the graduate degree and clinical certification in audiology. The department encourages, but does not require, students to complete foundational coursework prior to starting graduate study.

  1. Basic science and mathematics: Minimum one undergraduate course in each of the following areas to be eligible for ASHA certification: biological science; social or behavioral science; physical science; statistics. See adviser for list of acceptable courses.
  2. Speech and hearing sciences coursework. Undergraduate coursework in normal development of speech and language; and in language and speech disorders across the life span, to be eligible for ASHA certification.
  3. If undergraduate coursework is not completed prior to graduate study, students take one or more of the following speech and language courses during their graduate program: SPHSC 250, SPHSC 304, SPHSC 305, SPHSC 425.

Degree Requirements

Minimum 186 credits

  1. Didactic (minimum 82 credits): SPHSC 462, SPHSC 503, SPHSC 504, SPHSC 509, SPHSC 521, SPHSC 522, SPHSC 523, SPHSC 542, SPHSC 570, SPHSC 571, SPHSC 572, SPHSC 574, SPHSC 575, SPHSC 576, SPHSC 577, SPHSC 579, SPHSC 580, SPHSC 581, SPHSC 582, SPHSC 583, SPHSC 584, SPHSC 585, SPHSC 586, SPHSC 588, SPHSC 592, SPHSC 593
  2. Clinical (minimum 92 credits)
    1. 2 credits of SPHSC 552
    2. 50 credits of SPHSC 591
    3. 40 credits of SPHSC 601
  3. Practice Doctorate/Capstone Research Coursework (minimum 12 credits)
    1. Minimum 12 credits of SPHSC 801
    2. Statistics at the 400 level or above (e.g., EDPSY 490)
    3. Written document and oral defense of research
  4. Additional Degree Requirement: 36 credits of non-clinical graduate work at the 400 level or above. Minimum 18 of these 36 quarter credits in courses numbered 500 and above. No more than 12 credits of courses 500 level and above in 801 capstone research credits. Completion of requirements for the Certificate of Clinical Competence (CCC) of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association

Doctor of Philosophy

Entrance is for summer or autumn quarter only. The department does not accept Graduate Non-Matriculated (GNM) applicants.

Admission Requirements

  1. An identified faculty mentor from within the department who officially agrees to support the application.
  2. UW Graduate School Application completed between September 15 and February 15. Submit the following to the department by February 15:
    1. Unofficial transcripts for all schools attended
    2. Official GRE scores earned within the last 5 years
    3. Three letters of recommendation
    4. Statement of Purpose
    5. Writing sample or paper
    6. Department's supplemental application
  3. Minimum 3.00 GPA for the last 90 quarter credit hours of study (60 semester)
  4. Demonstrated English language proficiency
  5. Bachelor's or master's degree from a regionally accredited institution, depending upon area of interest

Degree Requirements

Minimum 90 credits

Includes 36 credits of graduate work at the 400 level or above and a minimum 18 of the 36 quarter credits in courses numbered 500 and above.

  1. Academic Coursework: For students with a prior undergraduate or graduate degree in speech and hearing sciences (minimum 41 credits as follows):
    1. SPHSC 560, SPHSC 561, and SPHSC 562 (minimum 9 credits)
    2. SPHSC 504, SPHSC 506, or approved alternative (minimum 3 credits)
    3. Four statistics courses (chosen in consultation with advisory committee). (minimum 14 credits)
    4. SPHSC 568 (minimum 3 credits)
    5. SPHSC 567; research seminar series (minimum 12 credits) Required autumn, winter, and spring quarters throughout the program
    6. Other Coursework: Students with a degree in a field other than speech and hearing sciences complete the following: SPHSC 303; SPHSC 320; SPHSC 461; plus one of the following: SPHSC 250; SPHSC 305; SPHSC 371
  2. Research Coursework: (minimum 43 credits). Pre-dissertation (16 credits) and dissertation (27 credits). All students conduct supervised research by the end of their first year.
  3. Teaching Experience: (minimum 6 credits)
    1. Instructional Development Forum (minimum 2 credits)
    2. Teaching Practicum (minimum 1 credit) For students pursuing an academic career
    3. Other Coursework: (3 credits)

Financial Aid

PhD students are guaranteed financial support as teaching or research assistants as long as they make adequate progress in the program.. In addition, the department has traineeships/fellowships supported by the National Institutes of Health on a competitive basis. Students are strongly encouraged to apply to the National Institutes of Health or other funding agencies for individual fellowships to support dissertation work. Summer support, although not guaranteed, can also generally be arranged.

Research Facilities

The department's research laboratories, as well as those of the Virginia Merrill Bloedel Hearing Research Center, the Institute for Learning and Brain Sciences, contain sophisticated equipment for the collection and analysis of data related to the study of human communication and its disorders. The University Speech and Hearing Clinic and the Center on Human Development and Disability also provide laboratories to support basic and applied research in speech, language and hearing development and disorders, across the life span.