Program Highlights: Master of Arts Program in Speech-Language Pathology (SPLA)

Collage of SLP Student Pictures

 

What is this program about?

The Master's program in Speech-Language Pathology (SPLA) is a comprehensive, academically based, clinically oriented, full-time program designed primarily to prepare professional Speech-Language Pathologists. The program contributes substantially to the academic and clinical practicum requirements for the Certificate of Clinical Competence (CCC) granted by the American Speech-Language Hearing Association (ASHA) and is accredited by the Council on Academic Accreditation (CAA). It entails two years of full-time study (including summer) that covers graduate-level coursework, on-site and off-campus clinical placements, and capstone paper or thesis project.

 

What is the focus?

  • Cutting-edge clinical and research issues pertaining to communication disorders and normal processes of speech, language and hearing. The focus covers the age span from newborn to the very old, and an extensive variety of disorders of language, articulation, fluency, voice, cognition and swallowing; 
  • Significant exposure to diverse clinical populations (including bilingual speakers), assessment procedures, treatment methodologies and work settings;
  • Evidence-based practice;
  • Training students to evaluate the efficacy of emerging technologies and procedures;
  • Extensive hands-on experiences in classes and clinic, with an emphasis on integrating theory with practice. 

 

Why is the program great?

  • Graduate coursework is offered by world-renowned faculty with specific expertise in the courses they teach;
  • A learning environment in which there are extensive collaborations between researchers and clinical faculty on topics such as fluency, communication partner training for persons with aphasia, autism, and traumatic brain injury;
  • Students have the opportunity and choice to conduct independent research (Masters Thesis) with renowned faculty researchers;
  • Students receive exceptionally high quality one-on-one clinical supervision with the goal of fostering readiness for independence in clinical practice;
  • The in-house clinic offers a variety of unique training opportunities including:
  • Numerous, off-site clinical externships in the Baltimore-Washington Metropolitan area are unparalleled (e.g., The Lab School of Washington, The Treatment and Learning Centers, National Rehabilitation Hospital in DC, Walter Reed Military Medical Center, Children’s Hospital in DC, Johns Hopkins University Hospital, etc.), and permit students to explore clinical specialties of interest;
  • Department-wide seminar series brings highly respected faculty to campus to interact with students;
  • 100% success rate in placing students in clinical externships (outside placements);
  • A high proportion of students receive financial support, in the form of on-campus graduate assistantships or from the Montgomery County Public Schools.

 

What can I expect from the program?

  • 35 credits of coursework and 15 credits of clinical training
  • Two years of full time study to complete 
  • Three semesters of training in the in-house clinic
  • Two semesters of clinical externship (outside placement), typically distributed between adult and pediatric settings
  • Typical class size of 20-25 students 
  • 100% pass rate on the ASHA Praxis exam, with over 95% employment rate

 

Program Contacts

Academic Requirements (e.g., Coursework, Comprehensive Exams, Thesis): Dr. Yasmeen Faroqi-Shah, MA Director

Clinical Training (including Outplacements): Colleen Worthington, Clinic Director

Class Registration: Valerie Brownlee, Graduate Program Coordinator 

Cultural and Linguistic Diversity Emphasis Program: Dr. Yasmeen Faroqi-Shah and Eusebia Mont, Co-Directors 

General Admissions Questions: hespadmissions@umd.edu

 

 

View the full program description for FALL 2016 here*.

For FALL 2015 and previous cohorts, please refer to the program description here.