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Speech Language Pathology

The Communication Sciences and Disorders (CSD) Department has a Master of Science degree in Speech-Language Pathology that offers students a program of academic and clinical preparation that meets:

  • the requirements of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA) for the Certificate of Clinical Competence in Speech-Language Pathology,
  • the requirements for Illinois State Licensure to practice as a speech-language pathologist, and
  • the requirements for a Professional Educator License endorsed in Speech-Language Pathology (non-teaching) to work as a speech-language pathologist in Illinois public schools.

The Master of Science (M.S.) education program in Speech-Language Pathology at Saint Xavier 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, MD 20850, 800-498-2071 or 301-296-5700. The program is accredited through February 28, 2023.

The degree designator of the accredited program is the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.



Program Length

22 Months

Credit Hours


Start Date

Fall 2022


Tuition Per Credit Hour: $995
Credit Hours to Complete: 51
Approximate Cost: $50,745



Application Components

Applicants to Saint Xavier University's master of science in speech-language pathology program must meet the following specific requirements in addition to the general requirements for admission to graduate study at the University:

  1. Completion of an undergraduate major, or equivalent undergraduate course sequence, in speech language pathology. Undergraduate preparation typically includes:
    • coursework in biological and physical sciences, mathematics, behavioral and social sciences, statistics, linguistics and psycholinguistics
    • basic human communication and swallowing processes, including: anatomy and physiology of speech, hearing and swallowing mechanisms; speech and hearing science; phonetics; normal language development; basic audiology; neurological bases of communication and swallowing
    • introduction to developmental and acquired communication disorders, basic clinical methods
  2. Proof of 25 Guided Observation Hours required before beginning our program. Guided observation hours require proven interaction with a licensed SLP after the student observes live or recorded therapy sessions, not passive viewing of sessions by the student alone.
  3. Scores on the general and writing section of the graduate record examination (GRE). A combined general score of 300 and a writing score of 4.0 is preferred, not required. If you take the GRE more than once, then please know that your highest score from each of the three categories -- verbal, quantitative, writing -- is what will be considered when reviewing your GRE scores.
    • NOTE: For applicants applying in fall of 2021, the GRE requirement has been waived due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
  4. For CSD "majors", a minimum undergraduate cumulative GPA of 3.2/4.0 is required. For "non-majors," the cumulative GPA from either your bachelor's degree or CSDI bridge courses must be 3.2/4.0. If you do not meet either of these GPA requirements, you will not be considered for admission.
  5. Three written recommendations from individuals able to comment on the applicant's academic and clinical achievements and potential for successful graduate study.
  6. Submission of a narrative regarding interest in the field.

In order to apply to the graduate program in communication sciences and disorders at Saint Xavier University, individuals must submit an online application through the communication sciences and disorders central application service (CSDCAS) only. Do not submit an application through Saint Xavier University. CSDCAS posts frequently asked questions on the applicant portal. You are encouraged to read the FAQs before submitting your application.

Important information:

  • CSDCAS application portal.
  • You must have your application and all materials submitted directly to CSDCAS by January 15 in order to be considered for admission into the following fall semester. The SXU CSDCAS GRE code is 0755. We encourage you to submit your application to CSDCAS by December 31 to allow CSDCAS ample time to process your application, combine it with the required supplemental items, and prepare it for the admission committee.
  • Your application and all supplemental items must reach CSDCAS by January 15 in order for you to be considered for admission. The admissions committee at SXU will not review any applicant's file whose application, three recommendations, narrative statement, GRE results, or official transcripts do not reach CSDCAS by January 15.
  • CSDCAS Customer Service Information is available Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. EST at 617-612-2030 or
  • Send official transcripts to:

CSDCAS Verification Department
P.O. Box 9113
Watertown, MA 02471

International students have additional application/admission requirements. See Supplementary Admission Criteria for International Students.

The following courses must be completed prior to beginning the graduate program in speech-language pathology. These courses must be completed, in progress, or planned at the time of application submission.

  • CSDI 205: Phonetics (or equivalent)
  • CSDI 206: Anatomy and Physiology of Speech and Hearing (or equivalent)
  • CSDI 207: Speech Science (or equivalent)
  • CSDI 305: Development of Language in the Young Child (or equivalent)
  • CSDI 307: Introduction to Audiology (or equivalent)

The following courses are recommended prior to beginning the graduate program in speech-language pathology:

  • One course in human or animal biology
  • One course in physics or chemistry
  • One course in statistics
  • One or more courses in Social Science (e.g., Psychology)
  • EDU 202: Educational Psychology (or equivalent)
  • EDU 323: Survey of Students with Exceptionalities (or equivalent)
  • CSDI 309: Neuroscience of Communication (or equivalent)
  • One or more courses related to disorders of communication (e.g., Speech Sound Disorders, Language Disorders, etc.)

For information about admission requirements for non-majors, please visit the Transfer into Communication Sciences and Disorders web page.

Please review the program requirements and the course descriptions in the SXU Academic Catalog for more detailed information.

Academic Requirements

A minimum of 51 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.

Courses are chosen in consultation with the student's academic advisor from the core courses, clinical practicum, 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. Clinical practicum experiences are available on-campus in the Ludden Speech and Language Clinic and off-campus at a wide variety of educational and medical sites throughout the Chicagoland area.

The graduate program in Speech-Language Pathology prepares students to meet the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) requirements for the Professional Educator License with endorsement in Speech-Language Pathology (non-teaching). Details concerning state licensure and certification are provided by academic advisors and in the graduate curriculum. Students are also prepared to earn a state license through the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation.

Student Outcome Data

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Course Sequence

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Ludden Speech and Language Clinic

The Ludden Speech and Language Clinic is part of the training program for SXU students who are preparing for careers in communication disorders.

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Communication Sciences and Disorders

Learn about the undergraduate Communication Sciences and Disorders Program.

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