A minimum of 48 credit hours is required for completion of the master of science degree in speech-language pathology. Credits are obtained in three interdependent categories: speech-language pathology content, clinical education and research. Students successfully completing the graduate degree are eligible for clinical certification in speech-language pathology through the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association as a function of meeting extensive skill and knowledge expectations associated with curricular offerings. Detailed formative activities regarding specific curricular requirements occur following acceptance into the graduate program.
The program is currently offered on a full-time basis, which typically involves five semesters including the summer semester between the two full academic years. Students may elect longer residencies for the purpose of obtaining additional academic, clinical or research experience.
Courses are chosen in consultation with the student's academic advisor from the core courses, clinical practica, elective courses and other offerings listed in the University's graduate catalog. Additionally, coursework from other departments and schools within the University is also available (e.g., psychology, education, nursing).
In addition, successful completion of either comprehensive examinations or thesis research is a requirement of the program.
Students completing the graduate degree in speech-language pathology enroll for several different clinical practicum courses. The overall objective is to provide a range of experiences in the development of entry-level competence for the profession. The specific number of practicum hours in individual courses will vary, however all students will complete the minimum 400 hours of supervised practicum to be eligible for ASHA certification.
State of Illinois Certification
Students who wish to satisfy Illinois State Board of Education requirements for the Type 73 school service personnel certificate (speech-language impaired) and for state licensure must complete the approved program of general and professional education requirements, pass the Illinois certification test of basic skills as well as the appropriate test of subject matter knowledge, and pass the PRAXIS examination. Details concerning Type 73 certification and Illinois state licensure are available from academic advisors.