All candidates for the Master's Degree will complete coursework and practicum obligations to fulfill the requirements for Kentucky State Licensure and the American Speech-Language Hearing Association's (ASHA) Certification of Clinical Competence in Speech-Language Pathology. Additionally they will fulfill all University of Louisville requirements and, if they choose to pursue teaching certification, the standards of the state and College of Education and Human Development.
Speech-Language Pathology Section Requirements
In order to graduate, students may choose to either complete a project, or to take comprehensive examinations.
- Project Option
Students who choose to conduct a project should select a topic and a faculty advisor by the second semester of their enrollment in the program. The student will also select a committee chair from the section faculty and at least two other graduate faculty members; one must be from outside the Division of Communicative Disorders.
ASHA requires that students have completed an introductory statistics course at the undergraduate level or that they complete it as part of the coursework of their Master's program. Students who choose the thesis option will also need to complete a graduate level statistics and research design course. Please see the Course Offerings page on this site for more details.
Students will take comprehensive written and oral examinations to test their abilities to integrate information across topic areas, to identify and solve clinical problems, to draw conclusions from clinical data, and to formulate appropriate strategies for patient care. The exams consist of an eight-hour written component and a forty-five minute oral component. The examination committee will be made up of either two faculty members, or one faculty member and an outside professional in speech-language pathology.
To obtain certification of clinical competency, candidates must fulfill all ASHA requirements which mandate amount and type of academic coursework, supervised clinical observation and practicum hours, passing all knowledge and skills competencies, a national examination, and a clinical fellowship year following the successful completion of the requirements.
ASHA also requires that students have completed one undergraduate class with a grade of C or better in each of the areas of biological sciences, physical sciences, math-based statistics and behavioral/social sciences. Please see Requirements for ASHA certification on this site for more information.
Knowledge and Skills Assessment
By the time of graduation students enrolled in the Section of Speech Pathology are required to show competencies consistent with those of a beginning professional. Following guidelines of the American Speech Language and Hearing Association, the Division has constructed a Knowledge of Skills Assessment document that lists all required competencies and in what class or clinic they should be acquired. Faculty members work with students in obtaining and documenting these competencies.
Each state determines its own requirements for licensure. Links to information about each state, its licensure requirements and speech-language associations are available on the ASHA website on their States Overviews page. Students will fulfill the state licensure academic requirements upon graduation.