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Elson S. Floyd College of Medicine

Speech and Hearing Sciences

Graduate Program

WSU’s Master of Science in Speech and Hearing Sciences program offers unique clinical and research experience, with opportunities to work with well-known scholars on current research. You will gain practical experience in many clinical and educational settings such as (but not limited to) working with:

  • Preschool-age children with developmental disabilities
  • School-age children
  • College-age students with learning disabilities
  • Adults with neurological disorders

Our low student/faculty ratio ensures individual attention, close supervision, and academic innovation.

The Department of Speech and Hearing Sciences’ Master of Science degree program in speech-language pathology is a member of the Western Regional Graduate Program (WRGP). The WRGP allows students to enroll at participating institutions outside of their home state and pay resident tuition. The participating states are Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oregon, South Dakota, Utah, Washington, Wyoming, and the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands.

Overview of Academic Program

Academic course work and clinical practicum offerings prepare students to become professional personnel capable of meeting the diagnostic and therapy needs of individuals of all ages evidencing a wide variety of speech, language, learning, and hearing problems.

Students are prepared as speech-language pathologists to provide direct and consultative services in educational and medical settings. The course of study emphasizes physiological, behavioral, neurological, and psychological dimensions of normal development, fundamental communication processes, and disorders of communication.

By applying science and research to clinical practice, graduate students develop proficiency in reasoning and problem-solving relative to clinical principles and procedures in diagnosis and treatment. The academic teaching and learning philosophy is student-centered, research-based, and writing intensive.


Full-time students typically complete the program in approximately two years, carrying an average of 16 credit hours per semester.

Master’s degree candidates are required to enroll in summer session to maintain progress toward completion of the program.

On- and off-campus clinical practicum and internships are available during summer session, as are selected required classes.

Resident/nonresident tuition differential is much smaller during summer session than during the academic year.

Program Accreditation

The master’s (M.S.) education program in speech-language pathology at Washington State University is accredited nationally by the Council on Academic Accreditation in Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology (CAA) of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association, 2200 Research Blvd. #310, Rockville, Maryland 20850, 800-498-2071. It also is recognized at the state level by the Washington State Board of Education. Students may contact the CAA to file a complaint related to the program’s compliance with standards for accreditation.

Program Strengths

  • The Department’s speech-language pathology master’s program ranked 62nd out of 229 programs ranked nationwide by U.S. News and World Report.
  • The percentage of our master’s graduates passing the national certifying examination (Praxis) and their median score have exceeded the national average in all years since we began tracking this benchmark. The most recent data (2014-2015) reveal that 100% of our graduate students who took the Praxis exam passed with a median score of 180, exceeding the national median of 176 and the national pass rate of 81%.
  • Virtually 100% of our SLP master’s graduates are gainfully employed in clinical fellowship (CF) positions following graduation.
  • One hundred percent of our SLP students who enter the graduate program with a bachelor’s degree in the discipline graduate with their master’s degree within four semesters and one summer.

Speech and Hearing Sciences Faculty

Faculty members in speech and hearing sciences hold graduate degrees from major universities throughout North America. Our faculty are committed to integrating a solid foundational knowledge base with the most current research findings in the field. Active involvement in research enriches the learning environment and allows students to be part of the dynamic processes of discovery and innovation. Visit the faculty directory for more information on faculty research, teaching and community involvement.

Here is an example of research from our faculty:


Our part in WSU’s Drive to 25

The Department of Speech and Hearing Sciences is pursuing a strategic plan that will expand and enhance the College of Medicine’s research portfolio and advance the University’s Drive to 25 campaign. Review the strategic plan here.