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Speech-Language Pathology Graduate Programs

The graduate program in Speech-Language Pathology at Miami University provides residential academic study and extensive hands-on experience in a variety of settings. The program is designed for full-time students with in-person course delivery over 21 months (see sample schedule below). Students may pursue either a non-thesis (Master of Science, M.S.) or a thesis option (Master of Arts, M.A.) in Speech-Language Pathology.


The Master of Science (M.S.) and the Master of Arts (M.A.) residential education programs in speech-language pathology at Miami University are accredited by the Council on Academic Accreditation in Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology (CAA) of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association.

2200 Research Boulevard #310
Rockville, Maryland, 20850
800-498-2071 or 301-296-5700

Mission Statement

The Miami University Department of Speech Pathology and Audiology (SPA) is committed to helping students develop superior critical thinking and clinical skills through an integration of academic information with research and clinical experience. These clinical skills will also serve the speech, language, and swallowing, and hearing needs of the individuals in our community.

The Master’s program in Speech Pathology is a program run by devoted, energetic, professionals dedicated to their students, patients, and profession. The program is unique to the University with a combined mission of training students in a highly-technical and skilled profession, conducting research in a rapidly-evolving field, and operating a professional and teaching clinic serving the University and the surrounding community.

Executive Summary of the Strategic Plan

To meet the mission of our Department, following primary broad areas have been targeted in our strategic plan:

  1. Increase the number of opportunities for interprofessional education and practice within the graduate program.
  2. Increase faculty and student participation in mental wellness activities.
  3. Increase the number and size of external grant submissions within the department.
  4. Develop strategies to target recruitment, retention, and support of students and faculty from traditionally underrepresented backgrounds.

Student Outcome Data

Praxis Examination Pass Rates of Graduates

Period # Taking Exam # Passed Exam Pass Rate (%)
2020-2021 33 33 100
2021-2022 27 27 100
2022-2023 24 24 100

Employment Rate for Graduates within One Year of Graduation

Period Employment Rate in Profession
# of graduates
Employment Rate in Profession
% of graduates
2020-2021 33 100
2021-2022 27 100
2022-2023 24 100

Program Completion Rate

Period # Completed Program within
Expected Time Frame
% Completing within
Expected Time Frame
2020-2021 33 100
2021-2022 27 100
2022-2023 24 100

Learning Outcomes for the MS/MA in Speech Pathology

Based on the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association 2020 Standards for Clinical Competence in Speech-Language Pathology and the standards for accreditation of the Council on Academic Accreditation in Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology.

  1. Review and synthesize the existing research literature, demonstrate competence in research design and implementation, and effectively communicate orally and in writing the results of their research.
  2. Articulate the etiologies, identify key characteristics, and demonstrate knowledge of current prevention, assessment, and treatment of the nine core areas of clinical practice for speech-language pathologists.
  3. Formulate an assessment plan and design an intervention plan with appropriate strategies and techniques founded in evidence-based practice for the nine core areas of clinical practice for a speech-language pathologist.

MA and MS Curriculum and Timeline for Admitted Students

Student walking on campus in fall.

(Revised May 2024)

Students begin coursework and clinic in the Fall and graduate in the Spring of their second year. Students are involved in the clinic beginning in their first semester.

By taking coursework while simultaneously treating patients, students learn to apply scientific concepts and clinical problems. In the first year of the program, students complete clinical rotations in various settings including audiology, diagnostics, long-term care, preschool, voice, and PRN services. In the second year, students complete three external clinic placements: adult medical, pediatric medical/outpatient, and schools.

The discipline-specific courses offer the necessary clinical and research skills required for certification in speech-language pathology.

The lock-step nature and rigor of our program do not allow for study outside the department. Our program prepares students for clinical careers in a range of settings including public schools, private practices, hospitals, skilled nursing facilities, and rehabilitation centers.

Our graduates obtain employment both locally and nationwide.

Year One

Arrival to Campus

One week prior to the onset of the fall semester, orientation is completed and graduate assistantships begin.

Fall Semester

  • SPA 621 Neurogenic Language Disorders (3 credits)
  • SPA 626 Seminars in Pediatric Documentation/Administration (1 credit)
  • SPA 656 Seminars in Adult Documentation/Administration (1 Credit)
  • SPA 672 Seminars in Neuroanatomy (1 credit)
  • SPA 633 Phonological Strategies and Articulation Disorders (3 credits)
  • SPA 641 Management of Fluency Disorders (2 credits)
  • SPA 620 Clinical Practicum (4 credits)

In addition to seeing patients in our Speech & Hearing Clinic and the Aphasia support group, students also complete six (5-week) clinical rotations during their first year. These experiences are part of SPA 620.

These rotations include:

  • Extended care
  • Audiology
  • Diagnostics
  • Preschool
  • Voice 
  • PRN

Winter Session

  • SPA 650 Normal Deglutition (hybrid course) (1 credit)
  • SPA 655 Cognition across the Lifespan (1 credit)
  • SPA 620 Clinical Practicum (1 credit)

Spring Semester

  • SPA 626 Seminars in Pediatric Documentation/Administration (1 credit)
  • SPA 651 Dysphagia across the Lifespan (3 credits)
  • SPA 671 Neurogenic Cognitive Disorders (3 credits)
  • SPA 622 Voice and Resonance Disorders (3 credits)
  • SPA 627 Pediatric Language and Autism Spectrum Disorders (3 credits)
  • SPA 720 Speaker Series (1 credit)
  • SPA 620 Clinical Practicum (2 credits)

Summer Session I

  • First three weeks of the summer term
  • SPA 635 Special Topics in Medical Speech-Language Pathology (2 credits)
  • SPA 638 Advanced Methods in Augmentative and Alternative Communication (2 credits)

Summer Session 2

  • SPA 750 Professional Field Experience (Adult) (6 credits)
    • Students will embark on a 10-week, full-time externship placement that typically takes place in an adult medical setting. The extern coordinator works with students to secure a placement in the student’s desired region of the country, although many students remain in southwest Ohio.
  • SPA 700 Thesis (1 credit) if completing the MA degree option

Year Two


All students are required to complete a culminating research project prior to graduation. Students pursuing the Master of Arts (MA) degree will complete a thesis. This involves an independent research project supervised by a faculty member in the department. Students pursuing the Master of Science (MS) degree will take a course on Evidence-Based Practice, in which they will complete a review of research literature to answer a clinical practice question.

Fall Semester

  • SPA 631 School-Age Language and Literacy (3 credits)
  • SPA 612 Seminars in Childhood Apraxia of Speech (1 credit)
  • SPA 625 Best Practices for School Speech Pathology (3 credits)
  • SPA 614 Evidence-Based Practice (MS degree, 3 credits) or SPA 700 Thesis (MA degree, 3 credits)
  • SPA 750 Professional Field Experience (Pediatric) (5 credits)
    • Students will embark on a part-time externship in a pediatric placement in Southwest Ohio. This placement will be two days/week, and students will complete coursework the remainder of the week.

Winter Session

  • SPA 605 Student Teaching Experience (1 credit)
    • Students will embark on a full-time externship in a school setting during the Winter and Spring semesters of the second year. This placement meets the requirements necessary for licensure in public schools following graduation.

Spring Semester

Spring Semester

  • SPA 605 Student Teaching Experience (12 credits)
  • SPA 700 Thesis (MA degree, 2 credits) 
    • Note that students completing a thesis will have one day/week off from their student teaching experience for research.

Graduate Admission Process

Review Graduate Admission Prerequisites

Completing Prerequisites

We require that all students earn a grade of at least "C" in the following prerequisites prior to beginning the graduate program. You must have completed at least 9 credits specifically related to Communication Sciences and Disorders prior to applying and you must have a plan to complete everything before beginning the program in the Fall. Students with majors in fields outside of Communication Sciences and Disorders are invited to apply, as long as the following prerequisites will be met. Students who have not completed the prerequisites will not be allowed to begin the program.

ASHA Prerequisites

The American Speech-Language-Hearing Association requires students to complete the following prerequisite coursework for graduate study in speech-language pathology. Coursework must be taken at the college level. Students must also obtain a Bachelor’s level degree.

  • Biological Science
  • Physical Science (Physics or Chemistry)
  • Social or Behavioral Science
  • Statistics

Miami University Prerequisites

The speech-language pathology program at Miami University requires students to complete the following coursework prior to beginning the graduate program. Please reach out to the graduate program director if you have questions about any of the prerequisite coursework.

  • Research Methods (separate from statistics, focuses on research design)
  • Language Development
  • Anatomy of the Speech Mechanism
  • Neuroscience (can be taken in CSD or psychology/neuroscience program)
  • Introduction to Audiology
  • Aural Rehabilitation (must be a distinct 3-credit course, per Ohio licensure requirements)
  • Phonetics
  • Speech & Hearing Sciences

Part 1: Applying to the Program

Communication Sciences and Disorders Central Application Service (CSDCAS)

Application Deadline

For Miami University, the CSDCAS application DEADLINE is December 15, 2024. All applications must have the status of COMPLETE at this deadline. Letters of recommendation should be submitted by your letter writers no later than December 15, 2024. Learn more about CSDCAS and create a CSDCAS account. Once the account is made, then additional information about CSDCAS will be provided.

At any time, if you have questions regarding the CSDCAS application process please contact CSDCAS directly or visit the CSDCAS Applicant Customer Service Center.

The CSDCAS portal for Miami University opens on August 15, 2024, for students applying to begin the program in the Fall 2025.

Application Considerations

Miami University uses a holistic admissions process in reviewing applications. We seek students with strong academic and interpersonal skills. We use applicant experiences, attributes and metrics to make admissions decisions. Preference may be given to students with strong extracurricular involvement, including (though not limited to) student/community organizations, volunteer work, employment, athletics, arts, and research. We recommend that students have an overall GPA of 3.3 or higher and a CSD-specific GPA of 3.4 or higher, though we will consider students with lower GPAs who have very strong applications. Miami University’s Graduate School requires a cumulative GPA of at least 2.70 to be considered for admission; those with a GPA below 2.70 will be disqualified.

All applicants will be considered for both admission and funding. There is no separate application for assistantships.

General Application Components

These responses will be required for all schools that you are applying to that are also using the CSDCAS portal. The following areas are based on questions asked during last year's application process:

  • Personal Information
    • Complete the information per the instructions provided.
    • Note: We recommend that you use your personal email address rather than your school email address. The email you use (school or personal) should be one you check regularly and that you will have access to post-graduation. Make sure you use an accurate phone number.
  • Academic History
    • Official transcripts - All official transcripts, including those for AP credit, must be sent to CSDCAS Verification Department P.O. Box 9113 Watertown, MA 02471
    • Colleges Attended - Simply add your school, degree, and year. If you did something like PSEO/CCP, you have to also enter those college credits
    • Transcript Entry - This needs to be done for EVERY school you received college credit. This is a VERY TEDIOUS part of the application but make sure you are thorough. If you make a mistake in this area, it can significantly delay the processing of your application submission.
    • Standardized tests - GRE scores will NOT be used by Miami University and do not need to be submitted.

If you are an international student and are required to submit a TOEFL score, this is where the score should be entered. See Miami University’s criteria for English proficiency test scores for details.

  • Supporting Information
    • Evaluations (Letters of Recommendation) - You will send a request from CSDCAS to your recommenders, using their system and entering the recommender's email address. Once your recommenders submit their letters, you will be notified.
Program Materials

These are specific components of the CSDCAS application unique to Miami University. Personal Essays and CV/Resumes will be used to measure experiences and attributes. Both will be reviewed both on the content and professional appearance. Please make sure that you carefully follow the instructions for both prior to submission. Failure to follow directions may negatively impact your application

  • Personal Essay: 
    • Formatting: 
      • 11-point font or larger
      • 1.5 or double spaced
      • Responses to each of the 3 prompts should be no more than 250 words
      • Prompt (please address each of these in your statement):
        • Prompt 1: (250 words max): The mission statement for our program is as follows:The Miami University Department of Speech Pathology and Audiology (SPA) is committed to helping students develop superior critical thinking and clinical skills through an integration of academic information with research and clinical experience. These clinical skills will also serve the speech, language, and swallowing, and hearing needs of the individuals in our community. The Master's program in Speech Pathology is a program run by devoted, energetic, professionals dedicated to their students, patients, and profession. The program is unique to the University with a combined mission of training students in a highly-technical and skilled profession, conducting research in a rapidly-evolving field, and operating a professional and teaching clinic serving the University and the surrounding community. Based on our mission statement or other information you have learned about the program, please explain why Miami University is a good fit for you.
        • Prompt 2: (250 words max): At Miami University, we have found that students demonstrating the following attributes tend to be successful in the graduate program: Collaboration, Communication, Compassion,Critical Thinking, Ethical Integrity, Initiative, Intellectual Curiosity, Motivation, Organization, Respect for Varied Perspectives, and Reliability. Choose two of these attributes which you feel are personal strengths and describe how you exude these attributes. How will these help you succeed in graduate school?
        • Prompt 3: (250 words max): Choose two of these attributes that you would like to improve in yourself and describe. How will you work to develop these attributes during graduate school?

Once you have completed your personal statement, upload your document on the Miami University CSDCAS Documents Tab.

    • Formatting: 
      • 11-point font or larger 
      • No more than 2 pages
      • Do NOT include a photograph of yourself
      • Aside from the above points, you may personalize your formatting (professional)
      • Only include activities since beginning college
      • Failure to follow all directions may negatively impact your application.
      • Please include the following sections:
        • Personal
          • Name
          • University, Degree(s), Dates Attended
          • Major(s), Minor(s), Certificate(s)
          • Overall Cumulative GPA
        • Guided Observations (formal observation hours under the direction of an ASHA-certified provider who has met the new ASHA standards; typically these hours are obtained from a clinical methods course)
          • Current total number of hours (if none, please state this)
          • Expected total number of hours by graduation (if none, please state this)
        • Shadowing Experiences (these are informal observation experiences of speech-language pathologists; if none, you may delete this section)
          • Location of shadowing experience
          • Total number of hours observed
        • Clinic Experience: (If none, you may delete this section)
          • Location of experiences
          • Populations/ types of disorders you served
          • Current total number of direct patient contact hours
          • Expected total number of direct patient hours by graduation
        • Research: (If none, you may delete this section)
          • Name of research mentor(s) (faculty/grad students)
          • Area(s) of research
          • Number of hours per week working on the research project
          • Dates of involvement (e.g., MM/YY - MM/YY)
          • Your responsibilities
          • Any presentations or publications resulting from your work (if applicable)
        • Extra-Curricular and Volunteer Activities - Include the following for EACH activity listed
          • Name of Activity/Organization
          • Frequency of activity (e.g., daily, weekly, monthly, one-time event)
          • Dates of involvement (e.g., MM/YY - MM/YY)
          • Define any leadership roles/responsibilities, if applicable 
        • Employment (If none, you may delete this section) - Include the following for EACH job listed
          • Name and location of employer
          • Brief summary of job (e.g., title and basic responsibilities)
          • Approximate number of hours per week
          • Dates of employment (e.g., MM/YY - MM/YY); indicate if it is year-round or seasonal employment
          • Define any leadership roles/responsibilities, if applicable
        • Awards/Honors (If none, you may delete this section)
          • Name of award/honor
          • Date(s) received
        • Other Relevant Other Experiences (If none, you may delete this section)
          • Specialized training/certifications
          • Conferences attended
          • Other relevant training/experiences not listed above

Once you have completed your resume/CV, upload your document on the Miami University CSDCAS Documents Tab.

  • Miami University CSDCAS Pre-Requisites Tab, found on the CSDCAS Application: This information is reviewed very carefully and checked against the requirements of the program. Many of the classes on this list are required before entering our graduate program, please see the Review Graduate Admission Requisites section above for details.
    • Twelve (12) Different pre-requisites are delineated in this section.
    • Carefully indicate the courses/credit hours/grades that you have completed OR NOTE THAT YOU ARE SCHEDULED to take a course for the Spring/Summer semester.
    • Please leave a course blank if you have NOT taken and DO NOT have a plan to take a specific course. Portions of courses do NOT fulfill the requirement of a completed course. For example, if you take a course that combines voice and aphasia, you are still required to take voice and adult aphasia as separate classes at the graduate level. Also, independent study for research OR work in a lab does not replace a designated research methods course.

Most common CSDCAS question: What do I do if I will not receive my Fall 2024 grades BEFORE the December 15, 2024, deadline? Do I wait to start my application? The answer is NO.

  • You should use the one-time academic update allowed by the CSDCAS to submit final grades at the end of the fall semester.
  • DO NOT WAIT to complete your application to our program while you are waiting for the grades for your fall coursework.
  • This one-time academic update allows you to submit your application in full prior to December 15, and then when your grades are posted for the fall semester, you can just update the academic portion of your application.
  • You can use this one-time academic update beginning December 15.
To ensure that our graduate committee will have adequate time to review your grades, please submit your academic update no later than Tuesday, January 2, 2024.

Complete and update your academic application.

Three main points to remember:
  • The CSDCAS application deadline of December 15, will require your application to be in the COMPLETED phase.
  • Letters of recommendation are due by your letter writers by December 15.
  • Students should NOT wait for their Fall transcripts to complete their application. Instead, complete the application, and then once the Fall grades have been received use the one-time academic update allowed by the CSDCAS. The one-time academic update is allowed beginning December 15. To ensure that our graduate committee will have adequate time to review your grades, please SUBMIT your academic update by January 2.

Part 2: Application Processing

Once you have submitted your application you will then have a significant period of waiting. Our faculty/staff will contact you via email if we have a question as we are processing and reviewing your application.

By the end of February, you will have received one of the following responses: denied, wait-listed, offer to interview.

For students who are selected to interview, details will be provided at that time to those candidates who qualify.

Note: No applicant will be admitted into the program without an interview.

Part 3: Interviews and Open House

All interviews will be held virtually beginning in late January-early February. Applicants selected to be interviewed will be invited to our information session held in February (specific date and details to follow). This session allows you to visit the campus, meet with faculty, and receive detailed information regarding the program.

All interviewed applicants are automatically considered for both admittance to the program and graduate assistantship opportunities. There is no separate application for assistantships.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Does your program have rolling admissions? 
    • We do not have rolling admissions.
  • Does your program allow for study abroad during the graduate program? 
    • No, there is not enough time during our rigorous program for students to travel abroad during the program.
  • Where do most students complete their externships? 
    • Oxford, Ohio is located between Cincinnati, Ohio, and Dayton, Ohio. Most externships are completed in these two cities and the surrounding areas.
  • What is the difference between an MA/MS degree at Miami University? 
    • Students who are applying to our program will be asked if they are completing an MA or MS degree. Students who wish at the time of applying to complete a thesis should select MA. Students who are taking our Evidence-Based Practice Course option should select MS. You may change this distinction during the course of your program without difficulty. Choice of program will not impact admissions decisions.
  • Am I able to take ASL or any of the certificate programs offered at Miami while completing the graduate program? 
    • ASL courses are only offered at the undergraduate level. For students interested in a certificate program, most students find that completing additional coursework is not possible within the current curriculum and clinical experiences.

Contact the Graduate Program Director, Dr. AJ Olszewski, with any other questions at

Visiting and More Information

The program hosts virtual open-houses each Fall. Registration instructions for those sessions will be posted to this page in early Fall. During the admissions cycle, the top 100 applicants are invited to an informational session on campus to meet faculty, tour facilities, and learn more about the program. If you are a prospective student interested in visiting our program, please email Dr. AJ Olszewski at to schedule.

Assistantships and Fellowships

Students do not have to apply separately for departmental assistantships. We assume that most, if not all graduate students are interested in funding. The Department of Speech Pathology and Audiology will nominate students for assistantships during the review process. The top 100 applicants will be interviewed for both admittance into the program and for assistantships. Following the interview, the Department, within their admittance letters, will notify students whether they are being offered an assistantship, on a waiting list for an assistantship or being offered admittance only, without an assistantship. Over the past 2 years, over half of our students have received some type of assistantship/fellowship funding for at least one year of their graduate studies.

Departmental Assistantship Opportunities

The number of departmental assistantships that we are able to offer is determined annually by the College of Arts and Science. Please see the information below about financial support and work responsibilities. 

  • The assistantship is either a 25% or 50% award. This would include either a 25% or 50% tuition waiver for two semesters.
  • The assistantship also includes a monthly stipend.
  • The assistantships are only offered on an annual basis and are not automatically renewed for the second year of study.
Responsibilities accompanying the assistantships will include 5 (25% award) or 10 (50% award) hours of work per week. Typically, a student is paired with a faculty member(s) to assist with research, teaching responsibilities, or administrative duties.

First-Year Non-Departmental Assistantship Opportunities

Non-departmental assistantships that allow for flexible scheduling and have been a good fit for past Speech Pathology graduate students are listed below.

Please be aware, other departments not listed below may also have assistantships for which you can apply. However, recipients' schedules may be more rigid and may not be the best fit for everyone. You can search for additional departments by typing "graduate assistantships" into the search box on the home page of Miami University's website.

Rinella Learning Center

Qualifications vary depending on area but generally require good organizational skills, computer skills, and the ability to supervise undergraduate students while working cooperatively with staff of the Rinella Learning Center. Interest in teaching large and small groups is desired.

Second Year Assistantships/Awards

During the 2nd year of the program, most students will be completing a full-time externship during their second semester that will be off-campus at a school. However, many students have found that they are able to hold a part-time job.

Some students will be offered a departmental graduate assistantship for their second year, particularly if the student has advanced skills (i.e., American Sign Language). 

The Grant-in-Aid Program, which offers combined merit and need based assistantships, will provide a tuition/fee waiver (at 87%). No stipends are awarded as part of this program.

Specialty Graduate School Awards

Select students will be nominated by the Department to compete for University-wide awards after the interviews and application reviews. Students will be notified during the review process by the Department if they receive one or more of the awards listed below.

Graduate Student Scholarship Assistantship (GSSA)

Students are nominated during the application process based on undergraduate research skills and an expectation of completing a thesis (i.e. those wishing to obtain a MA).

Ronald E. McNair Scholars

The Graduate School will also offer a McNair Fellows Assistantship Program, which will extend the prestige of the federally funded undergraduate McNair Scholarship to the graduate level.

Graduate Inclusive Excellence Scholars

The Miami University Graduate Inclusive Excellence Scholars (GIES) program is intended to attract and retain students who contribute diverseperspectives, experiences, and backgrounds that enrich and advance their programs, Miami University, and/or their academic discipline. Financial support is in the form of graduate assistantships.

Graduate Policies

The Office of Community Standards

The Office of Community Standards helps students to succeed in their personal responsibility, integrity, and sense of community. This site contains information about the Code of Student Conduct and other concerns relating to personal responsibility.

Academic Responsibilities and Grievance Policy

This page provides a descriptive procedure for academic grievance of a graduate student who believes that a faculty member has violated any effective learning and teaching practices stated in the Statement of Good Teaching Practices.

Council on Academic Accreditation

This site includes in-depth information about the procedure, criteria, determination of jurisdiction, and investigation of complaints against both graduate education programs and the Council on Academic Accreditation in Audiology and Speech Pathology (CAA).

People and a service dog in the Miller Center.

Academic Accommodations

Miami University is committed to ensuring equal access to students with disabilities. The Miller Center for Student Disability Services (SDS) assists students with determining eligibility for services and accommodation planning.

Students who are entitled to disability-related academic adjustments, auxiliary aids, etc., must register with SDS to receive accommodations in university courses. Please understand that formal communication from SDS must be presented prior to the coordination of accommodations for this course.

For More Information

Contact SDS at (513) 529-1541 or

Department of Speech Pathology and Audiology

Clinical Health Sciences Building
421 S. Campus Avenue
Oxford, OH 45056