photo of communication sciences and disorders students reading to a child at the Bell Center

The best way to develop your craft as a service provider is through hands-on experience. In each of our degree programs, field experience is a vital part of your education, helping you learn in ways that cannot be replicated in the classroom. For our undergraduate students, that means hours spent observing professionals in a variety of settings. You’ll see the theories and ideas you learn in the classroom put to use helping clients with a wide variety of communication challenges. 

For graduate students, we put heavy emphasis on clinical work throughout your education. It begins immediately, with an intensive orientation in your first summer term outlining clinical requirements, your professional roles and responsibilities and training on core competencies.

You’ll begin your clinical work in the first fall term and continue until graduation.  In that first year, you will complete approximately 4-5 clinical hours in the fall and 8-10 clinical hours in the spring.  In the second summer of your program, you will have experiences that are directed at what we call “special” populations, meaning we’ll identify or create experiences that you won’t find in normal clinical rotations.

During the fall and spring of your second year, your clinical hours will increase to approximately 15 hours per week in the fall and at least 20-25 hours per week in your last spring. Our accreditation body requires 400 hours of clinical experience to graduate, but we have structured our program to include more than 500 hours.

As for clinical sites, we have a system in place to help you secure your final rotations near where you live. Guided by our director of clinical education, we can help you design these rotations around your career objectives. 

And finally, our faculty bring a diverse level of experience to your education, not only clinically but academically. They are prepared to guide you through the process of becoming an exceptional speech-language pathologist.