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Speech, Language and Hearing Sciences, B.S.

Studying speech, language and hearing sciences at Saint Louis University will prepare you for a career as a speech-language pathologist or audiologist. 

Speech-language pathologists help prevent, identify, assess and provide treatment for communication and swallowing disorders to improve outcomes and quality of life of the client and their families. These include language development, acquired language disorders, stuttering, and voice and articulation disorders. Disorders related to literacy also have become an area of focus for speech-language pathologists. Speech-language pathologists provide service to children and adults and work in various settings, including schools, hospitals, rehabilitation agencies, nursing homes, private practices and private clinics such as the Saint Louis University Speech-Language-Hearing Clinic.

Audiologists help prevent, identify, assess and treat hearing disorders. Audiologists also evaluate hearing, prescribe and dispense hearing aids, program cochlear implants, assess balance, and provide intervention for auditory processing disorders to improve auditory skills, outcomes and quality of life for clients and their families. Audiologists are also involved in monitoring nerve function during surgery. Audiologists work in various settings, including physician offices, hospitals, rehabilitation agencies, nursing homes, private practices and schools.

If you choose to major in speech, language and hearing sciences at Saint Louis University, you will observe adults and children with various speech, language and auditory disorders during your undergraduate years. Following the completion of your required courses, you'll also have an opportunity to participate in an elective clinical practicum. Many students also choose to study abroad.

SLHS Undergraduate Handbook

Curriculum Overview

SLU’s speech, language and hearing sciences program requires 38 credits of speech, language and hearing sciences coursework along with the required credits of the core curriculum. It also requires 25 credits of clinical observation and completion of a capstone project.

Requirements for the degree include:

  • 3.00 cumulative GPA
  • 25 hours of clinical observation
  • Capstone project
  • A minimum of 120 credits (33 credits from the core curriculum in addition to 38 credits required for the major)

All students in the program experience guided observation of adults and children with various speech, language and hearing disorders. In addition, undergraduate students meeting all pre-requisites have the opportunity to participate in an elective clinical practicum, typically done in the second semester of their senior year.

Clinical and Research Opportunities

SLU undergraduate students in speech, language and hearing sciences are encouraged to participate in research activities, either faculty-guided independent research or as a research assistant. Such activities provide learning experiences outside the classroom and serve to focus interest in the discipline. In addition to enriching the undergraduate curriculum, engaging in research is a valuable way to prepare for graduate studies.

Students will observe adults and children with a variety of speech, language and auditory disorders at SLU's Reinert Speech-Language and Hearing Clinic. Following the completion of required courses, students also have an opportunity to participate in an elective clinical practicum. 

The senior-year capstone course allows students to actively participate in speech, language and hearing sciences research.

Careers

Speech-language pathologists typically need a master’s degree to practice. Most speech-language pathologists work in schools or health care facilities.

A doctoral degree (either a Ph.D. or an Au.D.) is required for audiologists entering the profession. Most audiologists work in health care facilities.

An undergraduate degree in speech, language and hearing sciences can also act as preparation for other professional degrees such as medicine, special education or public health.

For those not wishing to pursue an additional degree, one can practice as a speech-language pathology assistant in many states with a B.A. in communication sciences and disorders. Furthermore, some graduates have jobs as research assistants or patient care advocates with a bachelor's degree alone.

Speech-language pathology and audiology professions offer excellent employment opportunities. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the job outlook for both professions is positive, with both projected to experience “much faster than average growth” in the next decade. In addition, Forbes ranked speech-language pathology as a top-25 job of 2019.

Speech-language pathologists and audiologists are employed in various settings such as schools, hospitals, nursing homes, rehabilitation agencies and private clinics or practices.

Admission Requirements

Freshman Admission

All applicants are thoroughly reviewed with the highest degree of individual care and consideration to all submitted credentials. Solid academic performance in college preparatory course work is a primary concern in reviewing a freshman applicant’s file.

  • High school diploma or acceptable score on the General Educational Development test (GED)
  • Minimum cumulative GPA of 2.50 on a 4.00 scale
  • Saint Louis University has moved to a test-optional admission process for all undergraduate programs. Applicants may submit standardized test scores, but those who choose not to will not be disadvantaged in the admission process. 

Transfer Admission

Transfer applicants are encouraged to meet with the department to evaluate their transcript. A 2.50 cumulative GPA is required.

Pre-Select SLHS Admission Option

Saint Louis University's Speech, Language and Hearing Sciences Pre-Select Program offers an exclusive opportunity for juniors to be guaranteed a position in the SLHS graduate program after graduation. The purpose of this option is to provide qualified SLU undergraduate students the opportunity to apply for early admission into the SLU SLHS master’s program during their junior year and be granted direct admission into the program, allowing students to bypass the CSDCAS online application and the GRE.

Criteria for  Current SLU Students:

  • Minimum of 3.50 cumulative GPA and must maintain until graduation
  • A grade of C or better in all SLHS major courses
  • A personal statement letter
  • Recommendations from two SLHS faculty

Students admitted will have the opportunity to take SLHS 4650/5100 (Counseling) or SLHS 4600/5880 (Advanced Audiology) at graduate-level credit in their senior year. 

Students who have transferred into SLU’s SLHS department are eligible to apply for the pre-select admission option after completing a minimum of two full-time semesters at Saint Louis University, in addition to meeting the other criteria listed above.

Application Process:
  1. Attend the pre-select interest meeting in the spring to review the admission requirements and discuss the application process.
  2. Complete the SLHS pre-select admission form during the spring semester of junior year, no later than April 15, for pre-admission the following year. Forms are available from the undergraduate program director.
  3. Two recommendations using a standard recommendation form are required from SLU SLHS faculty who can attest to your academic and/or professional attributes and support your application for the pre-select program.
  4. Letter of application with a personal statement including professional interests, goals, personal attributes, etc., that supports your candidacy for the SLHS pre-select program should be included.
  5. A statement of intent will be included after you are sent a verification statement of your early admittance to the SLHS graduate program. This is submitted by March 30 of senior year.

Applicants will receive written notification of acceptance or rejection into the SLHS pre-select program no later than May 30 of junior year. Failure to complete academic and graduation requirements will compromise pre-select admissions.

Scholarships and Financial Aid

There are two principal ways to help finance a Saint Louis University education:

  • Scholarships: Scholarships are awarded based on academic achievement, service, leadership and financial need.
  • Financial Aid: Financial aid is provided in the form of grants and loans, some of which require repayment.

For priority consideration for merit-based scholarships, apply for admission by Dec. 1 and complete a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) by March 1.

For information on other scholarships and financial aid, visit www.slu.edu/financial-aid.

Leveling Option

The leveling option is designed for students who wish to pursue a graduate degree in speech-language pathology or audiology and already have a baccalaureate degree in a different discipline. The curriculum (32 credits) of the leveling option is based on the Department of Speech, Language and Hearing Sciences undergraduate curriculum and is designed to provide the courses necessary to apply to a graduate program in one of these professions. 

Curriculum Plan

Accreditation

For more information about the SLU speech, language, and hearing sciences program's student outcomes data (completion rates, Praxis exam pass rates, and employment rates), CAA complaint policy and accreditation information, please see the student outcome data and accreditation information below.

View Student Outcome Data and Accreditation Information (PDF) 

  1. Graduates will be able to demonstrate an understanding of the marginalized status of individuals with disabilities.
  2. Graduates will be able to identify how students' actions can impact their professional decisions with ethical consequences.
  3. Graduates will be able to apply the principles of evidence-based research to understand typical speech and language development.
  4. Graduates will be able to apply the principles of evidence-based practice to identify acceptable treatment methodologies.

Students in SLU's speech, language and hearing sciences undergraduate program take the following courses:

Standard

Core Courses
BIOL 1260General Biology: Transformations of Energy and Matter3
CHEM 1050Basic Chemistry (satisfies CORE 3800)3
or CHEM 1080 Principles of Chemistry 1 Lecture
CMM 1200Public Speaking3
CORE 1500Cura Personalis 1: Self in Community1
CORE 1600Ultimate Questions: Theology3
CORE 1700Ultimate Questions: Philosophy3
CORE 2500Cura Personalis 2: Self in Contemplation0
CORE 2800Eloquentia Perfecta 3: Creative Expression2-3
CORE 3400Ways of Thinking: Aesthetics, History, and Culture3
ENGL 1500The Process of Composition (Not required if received higher than 25 on ACT)3
ENGL 1900Advanced Strategies of Rhetoric and Research (satisfies CORE 1900)3
HCE 2010Foundations in Clinical Health Care Ethics3
HSCI 2200Medical Terminology3
IPE 2100Interprofessional Collaboration and Healthcare in Global Context3
PHYS 1050Intro to Physics of Human Body3
or CHEM 1080 Principles of Chemistry 1 Lecture
PSY 1010General Psychology (satisfies CORE 3600)3
STAT 1100Introduction to Statistics (satisfies CORE 3200)3
or MATH 1300 Elementary Statistics with Computers
General Electives12
SLHS Courses
SLHS 1000Introduction to Speech, Language & Hearing Sciences3
SLHS 2000Phonetics2
SLHS 2200Anatomy and Physiology of the Speech Mechanism3
SLHS 2400Foundations of Language3
SLHS 3000Cultural Linguistic Diversity3
SLHS 3200Speech Science3
SLHS 3400Hearing Science3
SLHS 3700Speech and Language Development3
SLHS 4150Survey of Speech & Language Disorders3
SLHS 4200Audiology: Basic Audiometry3
SLHS 4300Clinical Methods3
SLHS 4350Professional Writing & Documentation for the SLP and AuD1
SLHS 4400Aural Rehabilitation3
SLHS 4500Neurological Basis of Communication3
SLHS 4800Senior Seminar2
SLHS 4650Counseling (satisfies CORE 4000)2
Optional Courses
SLHS 1000Introduction to Speech, Language & Hearing Sciences3
SLHS 1420Deaf Culture and Sign Language3
SLHS 4050Research Seminar1
SLHS 4060Research Practicum1
SLHS 4600Advanced Audiology2
SLHS 4700Clinical Practicum1
SLHS 4900Speech Sound Disorders Assessment & Treatment2
EDSP 3560Special Ed. Process3
EDSP 3700Intro to Disabilities Studies3
EDSP 4310Ed & Psych of the Exp Ind3
Total Credits122-123

Continuation Standards

  • All speech, language and hearing sciences courses must be completed with a grade of "C" or higher in order to count for the major (courses may only be taken twice).
  • Students must maintain a 2.50 cumulative GPA as freshmen and sophomores, a 2.75 cumulative GPA as juniors, a 2.90 cumulative GPA as seniors and a 3.0 cumulative GPA is required to graduate.
  • Students will be dismissed from the program if they are on probation for three semesters and do not meet the GPA requirements.

SLHS Scholars

Core Courses
BIOL 1260General Biology: Transformations of Energy and Matter (satisfies CORE 3800)3
CHEM 1050Basic Chemistry3
CMM 1200Public Speaking3
or THR 2540 Voice & Diction
CORE 1500Cura Personalis 1: Self in Community1
CORE 1600Ultimate Questions: Theology3
CORE 1700Ultimate Questions: Philosophy3
CORE 2500Cura Personalis 2: Self in Contemplation0
CORE 2800Eloquentia Perfecta 3: Creative Expression2-3
CORE 3400Ways of Thinking: Aesthetics, History, and Culture3
EDSP 3560Special Ed. Process3
EDSP 3700Intro to Disabilities Studies3
EDSP 4310Ed & Psych of the Exp Ind3
ENGL 1500The Process of Composition (must take if received 25 or below on ACT)3
ENGL 1900Advanced Strategies of Rhetoric and Research (satisfies CORE 1900)3
HCE 2010Foundations in Clinical Health Care Ethics3
HSCI 2200Medical Terminology3
HSCI 2500Human Development across the Lifespan3
IPE 2100Interprofessional Collaboration and Healthcare in Global Context3
PHYS 1050Intro to Physics of Human Body3
or CHEM 1050 Basic Chemistry
PSY 3210Developmental Psych: Child3
PSY XXXXPsychology Elective: satisfies 36003
STAT 1300Elementary Statistics with Computers (satisfies CORE 3200)3
SLHS Courses
SLHS 1000Introduction to Speech, Language & Hearing Sciences (satisfies CORE 1000)3
SLHS 1420Deaf Culture and Sign Language3
SLHS 2000Phonetics2
SLHS 2200Anatomy and Physiology of the Speech Mechanism3
SLHS 2400Foundations of Language3
SLHS 3000Cultural Linguistic Diversity3
SLHS 3200Speech Science3
SLHS 3400Hearing Science3
SLHS 3700Speech and Language Development3
SLHS 4150Survey of Speech & Language Disorders3
SLHS 4200Audiology: Basic Audiometry3
SLHS 4300Clinical Methods3
SLHS 4350Professional Writing & Documentation for the SLP and AuD1
SLHS 4400Aural Rehabilitation3
SLHS 4500Neurological Basis of Communication3
SLHS 4600Advanced Audiology2
SLHS 4700Clinical Practicum1
SLHS 4800Senior Seminar2
SLHS 4900Speech Sound Disorders Assessment & Treatment2
Optional Courses
SLHS 4050
Research Seminar
SLHS 4060
Research Practicum
SLHS 4650
Counseling
General Electives12
Total Credits121-122

Continuation Standards

  • SLHS Scholars must maintain a 3.50 cumulative GPA through completion of the bachelor's degree and obtain a "B" or higher in all required SLHS Scholars courses.
  • SLHS Scholars must enroll in CSDI 4600 or 4900 as an advanced course senior year and enroll in CSDI 4700 during the spring of their senior year.
  • SLHS Scholars must obtain at least 15 clinical clock hours and 25 observation hours.

Roadmaps are recommended semester-by-semester plans of study for programs and assume full-time enrollment unless otherwise noted.  

Courses and milestones designated as critical (marked with !) must be completed in the semester listed to ensure a timely graduation. Transfer credit may change the roadmap.

This roadmap should not be used in the place of regular academic advising appointments. All students are encouraged to meet with their advisor/mentor each semester.  Requirements, course availability and sequencing are subject to change.

Standard

Plan of Study Grid
Year One
FallCredits
CORE 1500 Cura Personalis 1: Self in Community 1
CORE 1700 Ultimate Questions: Philosophy 3
SLHS 1420 Deaf Culture and Sign Language 3
ENGL 1500 The Process of Composition (If received 25 or higher on ACT, can take elective instead) 3
STAT 1100
or MATH 1300
Introduction to Statistics (satisfies CORE 3200)
or Elementary Statistics with Computers
3
SLHS 1000 Introduction to Speech, Language & Hearing Sciences (satisfies CORE 1000) 3
 Credits16
Spring
SLHS 2400 Foundations of Language 3
CHEM 1050
or CHEM 1080
Basic Chemistry (satisfies CORE 3800)
or Principles of Chemistry 1 Lecture
3
CORE 1600 Ultimate Questions: Theology 3
IPE 2100 Interprofessional Collaboration and Healthcare in Global Context 3
XXXXCore Elective 3
 Credits15
Year Two
Fall
SLHS 2000 Phonetics 2
SLHS 2200 Anatomy and Physiology of the Speech Mechanism 3
SLHS 3400 Hearing Science 3
EDSP 4310 Ed & Psych of the Exp Ind (Or Elective) 3
ENGL 1900 Advanced Strategies of Rhetoric and Research (satisfies CORE 1900) 3
HCE 2010
or PHIL 3360
Foundations in Clinical Health Care Ethics
or Medical Ethics
3
 Credits17
Spring
CORE 2500 Cura Personalis 2: Self in Contemplation 0
CORE 2800 Eloquentia Perfecta 3: Creative Expression 2-3
CORE 3400 Ways of Thinking: Aesthetics, History, and Culture 3
HSCI 2500 Human Development across the Lifespan 3
PSY 1010 General Psychology (satisfies CORE 3600) 3
SLHS 3200 Speech Science 3
 Credits14-15
Year Three
Fall
BIOL 1240
or BIOL 1260
General Biology: Information Flow and Evolution
or General Biology: Transformations of Energy and Matter
3
EDSP 3700 Intro to Disabilities Studies (Or Elective) 3
PSY 3210 Developmental Psych: Child 3
SLHS 3700 Speech and Language Development 3
XXXXElective (for minor) 3
 Credits15
Spring
CMM 1200 Public Speaking (satisfies CORE 1200) 3
SLHS 3000
or EDF 3620
Cultural Linguistic Diversity
or Culture and the Classroom
3
SLHS 4150 Survey of Speech & Language Disorders 3
SLHS 4200 Audiology: Basic Audiometry 3
XXXXElective 3
 Credits15
Year Four
Fall
Participation in / Completion of 25 observation hours by mid-December, if you plan to take SLHS 4700, otherwise by mid-April of Senior year for graduation  
SLHS 4300 Clinical Methods 3
SLHS 4350 Professional Writing & Documentation for the SLP and AuD 1
SLHS 4400 Aural Rehabilitation 3
HSCI 2200 Medical Terminology 3
XXXXElective 3
XXXXElective 3
 Credits16
Spring
EDSP 3560 Special Ed. Process (Or Elective) 2
SLHS 4500 Neurological Basis of Communication 3
SLHS 4600
or SLHS 4900
Advanced Audiology
or Speech Sound Disorders Assessment & Treatment
2
SLHS 4650 Counseling 2
SLHS 4700 Clinical Practicum 1
SLHS 4800 Senior Seminar 2
 Credits12
 Total Credits120-121

Program Notes

If you plan to take CSDI 4700, you must complete 25 observation hours by mid-December; otherwise, by mid-April as this is a graduation requirement.

Minimum credits for graduation is 120 (core credit hours = 33 hours)

SLHS Scholars

Plan of Study Grid
Year One
FallCredits
SLHS 1420 Deaf Culture and Sign Language 3
SLHS 1000 Introduction to Speech, Language & Hearing Sciences (satisfies CORE 1000) 3
CORE 1500 Cura Personalis 1: Self in Community 1
CORE 1700 Ultimate Questions: Philosophy 3
ENGL 1500 The Process of Composition (If received 25 or higher on ACT, can take elective instead) 3
STAT 1100
or MATH 1300
Introduction to Statistics (satisfies CORE 3200)
or Elementary Statistics with Computers
3
 Credits16
Spring
CHEM 1050 Basic Chemistry (satisfies CORE 3800) 3
CORE 1600 Ultimate Questions: Theology 3
IPE 2100 Interprofessional Collaboration and Healthcare in Global Context 3
SLHS 2400 Foundations of Language 3
XXXXCore Elective 3
 Credits15
Year Two
Fall
EDSP 4310 Ed & Psych of the Exp Ind (Or Elective) 3
ENGL 1900 Advanced Strategies of Rhetoric and Research (satisfies CORE 1900) 3
HCE 2010
or PHIL 3360
Foundations in Clinical Health Care Ethics
or Medical Ethics
3
SLHS 2000 Phonetics 2
SLHS 2200 Anatomy and Physiology of the Speech Mechanism 3
SLHS 3400 Hearing Science 3
 Credits17
Spring
CORE 2500 Cura Personalis 2: Self in Contemplation 0
CORE 2800 Eloquentia Perfecta 3: Creative Expression 2-3
CORE 3400 Ways of Thinking: Aesthetics, History, and Culture 3
SLHS 3200 Speech Science 3
HSCI 2500
or EDF 2240
Human Development across the Lifespan
or Growth Development and Learning
3
XXXXPsychology Elective: satisfies CORE 3600 3
 Credits14-15
Year Three
Fall
BIOL 1240 General Biology: Information Flow and Evolution 3
EDSP 3700 Intro to Disabilities Studies (Or Elective) 3
PSY 3210 Developmental Psych: Child 3
SLHS 3700 Speech and Language Development 3
XXXXCore Elective 3
 Credits15
Spring
CMM 1200 Public Speaking (satisfies CORE 1200) 3
SLHS 3000 Cultural Linguistic Diversity 3
SLHS 4150 Survey of Speech & Language Disorders 3
SLHS 4200 Audiology: Basic Audiometry 3
XXXXElective 3
 Credits15
Year Four
Fall
Participation in / Completion of 25 observation hours by mid-December in order to take CSDI 4700  
HSCI 2200 Medical Terminology 3
SLHS 4300 Clinical Methods 3
SLHS 4350 Professional Writing & Documentation for the SLP and AuD 1
SLHS 4400 Aural Rehabilitation 3
XXXXElective 3
XXXXElective 3
 Credits16
Spring
EDSP 3560 Special Ed. Process 2
SLHS 4650 Counseling 2
SLHS 4700 Clinical Practicum 1
SLHS 4800 Senior Seminar 2
SLHS 4500 Neurological Basis of Communication 3
SLHS 4600 Advanced Audiology 2
 Credits12
 Total Credits120-121

Program Notes

SLHS Scholars are required to take CSDI 4700. Minimum credits for graduation is 120 (CSD credits = 41). The minor is not required for graduation, although it is suggested. 

 

Apply for Admission

Contact Doisy College of Health Sciences:
Julie Miller
Recruitment Specialist
314-977-2570
dchs@health.slu.edu