Pursue a satisfying and rewarding career as a speech-language pathologist (SLP) in health care, medicine, research or education.

The M.S. in Communication Sciences and Disorders provides the academic background and clinical opportunities required to prepare for clinical fellowship and the Certificate of Clinical Competence in Speech-Language Pathology (CCC-SLP).

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The Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders includes the Eleanor M. Luse Center for Communication: Speech, Language, and Hearing, an active clinic providing speech-language and audiology services to the community. The clinic serves as a primary practicum site for students in their first year of study. UVM Continuing and Distance Education offers two online post-baccalaureate programs, one for those who wish to become a speech-language pathology assistant, and a prerequisite track for those applying to the master's program.

Admission and Degree Requirements

Admission Requirements

  • Baccalaureate degree from an accredited institution.
  • Satisfactory performance on the general Graduate Record Examination.
  • Prerequisite courses, including ASHA prerequisites, completed before entry into the program.
  • 25 Observation Hours completed before entry into the program.
  • Three letters of recommendation from faculty or others who know your work.
  • Personal statement.
  • Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) for non-US residents who did not receive their undergraduate degree from an institution in which English is the language of instruction. UVM TOEFL code is C122. Please know the minimum score for the program is 100. 
  • Prospective students must complete two applications: The CSDCAS common application and UVM Graduate College application. (Please note: You do not need to upload a resume or writing sample to the UVM Graduate College application. Under the personal statement, please upload a PDF or Microsoft Word document that reads: "See essay on the CSDCAS application.")

(UVM Continuing Education offers two online post-baccalaureate programs, one SLPA Track for those who wish to become a Speech Language Pathology Assistant and one Prerequisite Track for those applying to the master's program.)

Minimum Degree Requirements

All students are required to complete mandatory coursework in pursuit of the M.S. in Communication Sciences and Disorders. This coursework includes content areas met by the following CSD courses:

  • CSD 271 - Introduction to Audiology
  • CSD 272 - Hearing Rehabilitation
  • CSD 313 - Augmentative Communication
  • CSD 320 - Clinical Preparation and Management
  • CSD 321 - 326 Clinical Study
  • CSD 330 & 331 - Stuttering Assessment & Treatment
  • CSD 340 - Speech Sound Disorders
  • CSD 341 - Language Disorders
  • CSD 342 - Seminar in Language/Learning Disabilities
  • CSD 350 - Swallowing Disorders
  • CSD 352 - Voice Disorders
  • CSD 351 - Neurogenic Communication Disorders 1
  • CSD 353 - Neurogenic Communication Disorders 2
  • NH 363 - Fundamentals of Critical Inquiry: Evidence-Based Practice
  • A thesis or a non-thesis sequence of courses in Systematic Reviews in Communication Sciences and Disorders (i.e., CSD 361 & CSD 363)

Comparable courses taken at the undergraduate level through Continuing Education or at another institution may not need to be repeated and may make room for elective courses with faculty permission. Equivalent graduate level coursework, up to nine credits, may be waived if approved by the graduate program coordinator, reducing the total number of in-residence credits neeeded for completion of the program. Students are required to take one to three credits of Clinical Study, CSD 321-326, for each semester they are active in the program. See the course schedules for the total number of credits required for the non-thesis track versus thesis track.

Clinical Opportunities

The clinical practicum provides students an opportunity to apply their knowledge while engaging in clinical training under the supervision of licensed speech-language pathologists. Students are assigned clinical practicum every semester. In the first year, students are assigned a placement in the Eleanor M. Luse Center. In subsequent semesters students are assigned to practica in diverse settings (e.g., hospitals, schools, long-term care facilities, preschools, home health agencies, etc).

Pre-Practicum Requirements: Speech-Language and Audiology

Background Checks: Criminal background checks are a part of becoming a speech-language pathologist in many settings. Although the Department does not require students to complete a background check prior to admission into the program, practicum placements and final employment and/or licensure in many locations typically require that applicants submit to a background check. Applicants are advised of potential barriers to participation in the program and to future employability within the profession as a result of problems revealed in a background check.

Practicum Clock Hour Requirements (to meet ASHA certification eligibility and UVM requirements)

All students will complete on-campus practicum placements in the first year prior to beginning off-campus placements. Clinical experiences in the Eleanor M. Luse Center may be required throughout the graduate program.

For graduation 400 clock hours are required, of which 25 can be clinical observation. The remaining 375 hours must be accrued through direct client contact. Learn more about clock hours and clinical requirements in the CSD Clinic Manual.

Outstanding Faculty

The Communication Sciences and Disorders faculty conduct research in areas such as speech and language development, speech sound disorders and apraxia of speech, fluency and stuttering, autism and theory of mind, brain injury and cognitive-communication disorders. Many opportunities are available for graduate students who wish to become involved in faculty research projects.

Faculty examples

Shelley Velleman, Ph.D., CCC-SLP
Professor of Communication Sciences and Disorders, Department Chair

Dr. Shelley Velleman's research focuses on speech sound development in typically-developing children and in children with disorders, including neurodevelopmental syndromes. Her studies of typically-developing children have focused on how the language or dialect of exposure affects the process of learning to talk.

Michael Cannizzaro, Ph.D., CCC-SLP
Associate Professor of Communication Sciences and Disorders
, Graduate Program Coordinator



Dr. Michael Cannizzaro conducts research investigating brain and behavior relationships in both typical and brain-injured populations. This work focuses on the role of the prefrontal cortex during complex communication and tasks that involve executive functions.

Read more about our faculty >>

Student Outcomes

The following information has been reported to the Council on Academic Accreditation in Audiology and Speech Language Pathology (CAA). Employment data are from students reporting information to the CSD Department on an individual basis. Graduation data are available through the UVM Office of the Registrar. Praxis test scores are reported by the Educational Testing Service (ETS).

Program Completion Rate
Period # completed program within expected time frame # completed later than expected time frame # not completing % completing
2018-19 18 0 0 100
2017-2018
13
0
0
100
2016-2017
10
0
1
91
3-year average
14
0
< 1
97

 

Praxis Examination Pass Rates
Period # taking exam Pass rate (%)
2018-19* 10 100
2017-2018
13
100
2016-2017
10
100
3-year average
11
100

* as of 8/12/19

Employment Rate in Profession
Period
Number of graduates
Percent of graduates
2018-19 18 100
2017-2018
12
100
2016-2017
10
100
3-year average
14
100

 

Curriculum

Additional program requirements are outlined in the Communication Sciences and Disorders graduate student handbook (PDF) and clinic manual (PDF).

Frequently Asked Questions

How long is the program?

The program is designed to take two years to complete. In addition to the four academic semesters, you will be required to complete a clinical placement in the summer between the two academic years. After you have received your Master's degree and passed the national Praxis examination, you will then need to complete your Clinical Fellowship Year (CFY), which is a nine-month full-time placement, in order to receive your Certificate of Clinical Competence (CCC) from the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA).

What about financial aid and the tuition costs for the program?

To obtain current information for financial aid, tuition, and fees, refer to the Student Financial Services website. If you have questions about whether you are an in-state or out-of-state resident, refer to the Registrar's Residency Policy.

How can I find out more about the M.S. in Communication Sciences and Disorders program? Do you hold information sessions?

The College of Nursing and Health Sciences Office of Student Services is able to guide you during the application process and answer any of your questions. You can contact them at cnhsgrad@uvm.edu. There are also advisors and current CSD students available if you want to speak to someone about the program. The Office of Admissions offers campus tours. They are undergraduate-focused, but a great way to see the campus. Information sessions for the CSD program are held in the fall semester. These sessions - held by a faculty member in the department - are highly recommended.

How many applicants are there annually? What is the average class size?

The number of applicants for the CSD graduate program varies each year, but the target class size is approximately 18 students.

When is the application deadline?

The application deadline is January 15 for the Communication Sciences and Disorders Centralized Application Service (CSDCAS) and the UVM Graduate Application. Applications submitted prior to the January 15 deadline will be reviewed and receive an admissions decision within six weeks. Please note: the University will be closed from Dec. 24 - Jan. 1. We will have email/voicemail away messages stating the UVM closure for winter break and will return all emails/phone calls upon our return beginning on January 2.

What are the minimum GRE scores? May I retake my GREs?

The program prefers a minimum score of 144 Quantitative (500 on previous version), 150 Verbal (500 on previous version), and 4.0 Writing. Applicants may retake the GRE and the highest score in each section will be counted.

Do I need to have all of the prerequisite courses completed prior to applying?

All prerequisite courses or equivalents must be completed prior to the program start date. You may have no more than two prerequisite courses remaining for the spring and summer semesters when you apply. If you have any concerns regarding whether a course meets one of the requirements, you may send a copy of the syllabus or catalog description to cnhsgrad@uvm.edu. UVM Continuing Education offers all of the prerequisites through the Communication Sciences and Disorders Pre-Masters Track.

What is the minimum GPA that I need to be considered for admission to the program? May I retake courses to obtain a better grade?

Applications with GPAs of 3.0 and higher will be reviewed; the average GPA of students accepted into the program is 3.5. Applicants are welcome to retake classes to obtain a better grade if they would like to do so.

Are observation hours required?

According to ASHA guidelines, applicants must complete and accurately document 25 observation hours prior to the graduate program start date. Hours should be documented using the form below:

Is an interview required for admission?

There is no interview requirement for the program.

Where should I send my application materials?

Official transcripts, GRE scores, and three letters of recommendation should be submitted through the CSDCAS common application site. The GRE Code for the University of Vermont CSD program is 3920. The UVM Supplemental Graduate Application must also be completed online. You may use the same personal statement for the CSDCAS application and the UVM application.

How can I find out if CSDCAS has received my transcripts (or any other materials)?

The status of your application can be checked online. To view the real-time progress of your application, login to CSDCAS and go to the STATUS section. If you are having any difficulties with CSDCAS, contact their customer service line at (617) 612-2030 or csdcasinfo@csdcas.org. UVM will notify you when applications have been received.

When will I hear whether I have been admitted to the program?

Notification of acceptance is typically sent to applicants in March. This is meant to allow applicants adequate time to make decisions regarding admission by the common Apr. 15 admissions decision deadline. Waitlisted students are notified at the same time as admitted students and will be notified if their status has changed as soon as possible after the Apr. 15 deadline.

 

Accreditation: The Master of Science degree educational program in speech-language pathology at the University of Vermont has been re-accredited for the period 2012 - 2020 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; Phone: (800) 498-2071 or (301) 296-5700.

Contact Us

College of Nursing & Health Sciences
Office of Student Services
(802) 656-3858
cnhsgrad@uvm.edu

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APPLICATION DEADLINE

JANUARY 15

Applications submitted prior to the deadline will receive an admissions decision within six weeks.

Graduate employment rate

100%

Three-year average

Careers

  • Speech-Language Pathologist
  • Audiologist