Speech & Hearing Sciences
Academic course work is combined with clinical practicum to prepare individuals for careers in providing a professional service designed to meet both diagnostic and therapy needs for individuals of all ages. Students are prepared to be competent and proficient professionals capable of addressing a wide variety of speech, language, learning, and hearing problems.
Students prepare to provide direct and consultative services as speech-language pathologists in educational, medical, and private practice settings. The course of study emphasizes physiological, neurological, psychological, and behavioral processes in normal development, fundamental communication processes, and disorders of communication. Students are encouraged to combine analytical thinking and independent application of course content with the clinical process.
Training in speech and hearing sciences through the bachelor's level degree is considered a pre-professional degree. State and national clinical and educational certifications require completion of the master's degree.
Who We Are
Both the undergraduate and graduate programs are located in Spokane and are a cooperative venture with Eastern Washington University. Washington State University and Eastern Washington University combine faculty and resources to form University Programs in Communication Disorders (UPCD). WSU students enroll through, and receive their degrees from, Washington State University. The Hearing and Speech Clinic is the graduate student training facility for UPCD. Spokane provides many additional opportunities to work with special populations, including medical settings. The capstone internship program provides intensive practical experiences in numerous clinical and educational settings.
The Department of Speech and Hearing Sciences is based at the Riverpoint Campus in Spokane. Officially designated as WSU's health science campus, the Riverpoint Campus is home to a wide variety of health-related academic and research programs. You will be sharing the campus with future doctors, nurses, pharmacists, dietitians, exercise specialists, and health care managers.
The Department's teaching and research facilities are housed in the Health Sciences Building. The building also houses the University Hearing and Speech Clinic and the Hearing Oral Program of Excellence or HOPE School, the area's only listening and spoken language preschool for children with hearing loss. Both the clinic and the school provide opportunities for clinical experiences to graduate speech and hearing sciences students.
The graduate program in speech-language pathology is accredited nationally by the Council on Academic Accreditation of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association and recognized at the state level by the Washington State Board of Education.
- Educational Staff Associate (ESA) Certification
ESA certification for speech-language pathologists and audiologists in Washington is separate from ASHA CCC certification and is required by the state for employment in a public school setting. There are two levels of ESA certification: Initial and Continuing. Consult with Leslie Power for additional information.
- Initial ESA Certification Course Now Offered Online
SHS 471: Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology in the Public Schools, available online beginning fall 2010, is a required course in the major and satisfies the Washington State Office of the Superintendent for Public Instruction (OSPI) course requirement for initial ESA certification for speech-language pathologists and audiologists seeking to work in public schools.