Jul 18, 2024  
2020-2021 Graduate Catalog 
2020-2021 Graduate Catalog [Not Current Academic Year. Consult with Your Academic Advisor for Your Catalog Year]

Communication Disorders, MA

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College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences  > Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders  > Communication Disorders, MA

The Master of Arts education program in Speech Language Pathology at the University of Houston is accredited by the Council on Academic Accreditation in Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA).

Therefore, the Communication Disorders MA provides students with the required academic and practicum experience to apply for the Certificate of Clinical Competence (CCC) of ASHA and to apply for licensure to practice speech language pathology in Texas. Students who complete this program are prepared to take the national Praxis Speech Language Pathology exam and to begin their clinical fellowships, the final required steps to reaching full certification (CCC).

Students who pursue this degree are interested in the theory, science, and methods of improving impaired human communication and swallowing. Speech language pathologists help people who have problems with language, speech, cognition, and swallowing. Individuals with disorders of language include children who do not meet developmental expectations due to many causes as well as individuals (adults and children) who have acquired disorders following a stroke, traumatic brain injury, or other medical condition. Language disorders may also be due to deficits in the social use of language, known as pragmatics. Some people who cannot use traditional spoken language for communication work with speech-language pathologists using alternative forms to share their messages. This may include sign language or an electronic device. Speech disorders often occur in children who produce sound errors along with other individuals (adults and children) who stutter or have acquired speech disorders due to stroke, traumatic brain injury, or other neurological disorders. Cognitive disorders that underlie communication, such as attention, memory, organization and reasoning, can be impaired after brain injury or can be part of a developmental disorder. Swallowing disorders, although usually the result of a medical condition, may also be a result of behavioral factors. Students in the Communication Disorders MA program learn about all of these areas. Graduates, upon completing the Praxis exam and 9 month clinical fellowship requirements leading to the CCC, will serve in settings from private homes to schools to hospitals and clinics, and work with clients across the life span.

For more information, please visit the Communication Sciences and Disorders website (www.uh.edu/class/comd/).

Admission Requirements

In addition to meeting the College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences graduate admission requirements , applicants to the program must have completed required background courses in basic sciences (physical, biological, and social/behavioral), statistics, and normal human communication processes at the undergraduate or post-baccalaureate level with a grade point average of at least 3.00 (A=4.00). Less tangible factors also contribute to admission decisions. These may include:

  1. communicating effectively and interacting constructively in a clinical and/or supervisory relationship,
  2. the ability to use critical thinking and problem solving, and
  3. the potential for contributing to the profession of speech-language pathology.

Information on how to apply can be found on the How to Apply to UH Graduate School. Specific requirements include:

  • official transcripts from each university attended
  • official GRE scores
  • personal statement
  • three letters of recommendation and
  • resume

International applicants should visit the International Graduate Students page to learn more about the additional required documentation and English language proficiency requirements. All applications require an application fee.

Degree Requirements

Credit hours required for this degree: 49.0 - 52.0

Plan I: Thesis Option

Students must complete:

  • A minimum of 52.0 Credit Hours
    • 31.0 Credit Hours in content courses in the major
    • 15.0 Credit Hours of practicum experience
    • 6.0 Credit Hours will consist of thesis credit
  • An oral defense of the thesis is required
  • Must pass one evidence-based practice report 

Plan II: Non-Thesis Option

Students must complete:

  • A minimum  of 49.0 Credit Hours
    • 31.0 Credit Hours in content courses in the major
    • 15.0 Credit Hours of practicum experience
    • 3.0 Credit Hours of electives
      • The elective can be an approved elective taken in Communication Sciences and Disorders or selected from pre-approved courses outside the department.
  • A comprehensive examination is required
  • Must pass two evidence-based practice reports 

Academic Policies

In general, the Communication Disorders MA academic policies mirror those of the University and College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences. However, this program is more rigorous in the area of academic progress. A student in the COMD Master’s program may only have one grade lower than a B-in an academic class or below a B in clinic/externship before being dismissed due to insufficient academic progress. A student who is unable to pass the evidence-based practice report following intervention also may be dismissed due to lack of academic progress. Additionally, students removed from graduate standing are not eligible to enroll in practicum courses.

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