Learn how to help people effectively communicate.
Explore typical communication processes and how differences and disorders affect everyday life.
You will develop the ability to think critically, evaluate data, engage in scientific reasoning, and write and present professionally. With this degree you will be ready for a career in a helping profession, or you can continue on to graduate school to become a speech-language pathologist or audiologist. Whether you want to work alongside an autistic child, help students learn to read in the classroom, interact with a person who stutters, or help individuals stay part of the conversation as they age, this degree will help you achieve your goals.
What you will do:
- Understand how humans learn to communicate with each other
- Apply scientific principles to the basics of diagnosing and treating speech, language, and hearing disorders
- Observe real-life clinical intervention in the on-campus Speech-Language-Hearing Center
- Explore the connections among culture, language, and society
- Participate in faculty research initiatives on topics such as fluency disorders, hearing loss, adult language disorders, cognitive disorders, and autism, among others
- Discover the positive impact you can have on the lives of people who have difficulty communicating with others
The undergraduate program immerses students in an academically rigorous and challenging course of study. Students learn about the normal development and processes of speech, language, and hearing, as well as its disorders across the lifespan. In addition to the courses offered within the Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders, students are required to take courses in biological sciences, physical sciences, behavioral sciences, and mathematics.
The undergraduate curriculum allows the opportunity for students who may be interested to study abroad or be part of the National Student Exchange. The second semester of year one or the first semester of year two or three are good choices for these pursuits. Students must plan their semester away with their department advisor at least one year in advance to assure that they complete their major requirements in a timely manner. The curriculum also allows students to declare a minor in an area of interest.
Overall, the Communication Sciences and Disorders major provides students with knowledge and skills that enable them to do well in either graduate school or in the work place. Students will have an excellent liberal arts education with a strong basis of normal and disordered communication. Students acquire interpersonal, critical thinking, and problem-solving skills, as well as scientific reasoning, strong writing ability, and strong presentation skills.
The Communication Sciences and Disorders Department’s Program Goals ensure that students will be able to demonstrate knowledge and skills of the science underlying human communication, including anatomy and physiology, speech science, phonetics, language science, and hearing science. Students will also be able to demonstrate knowledge of the etiology, characteristics, assessment, prevention, and intervention of communication disorders. In addition, students will demonstrate written, oral language, as well as critical thinking skills pertaining to normal and disordered communication.
The Communication Sciences and Disorders Honors Program is intended for outstanding students within the major. Students completing the requirements will graduate with departmental honors. Applicants must submit a letter of application to the Communication Sciences and Disorders Undergraduate Committee, a research proposal, and a letter of support from a faculty sponsor. Applications are due November 1 for spring semester and April 1 for fall semester.