How to Choose an Online Speech Pathology Program

The right online speech pathology graduate degree is different for everyone—it depends on your schedule, where you live and how you learn best. To make it easier to decide which program is best for you, we have compiled a list of online speech pathology master’s programs as well as information on some of the factors you might take into consideration when earning a speech pathology master’s online.

Sponsored Online Speech Pathology Programs

Sponsored Online Speech Pathology Programs

Earn Your SLP Master’s Online From Baylor

Baylor’s SLP master’s program online can be completed full time in 20 months or part time in 25 months. Bachelor’s required. No GRE required.

  • Part-time and full-time options: 20 and 25 months
  • Industry-leading curriculum in a faith-based environment
  • Bachelor’s Degree Required

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Online MS: Pursue SLP Certification. Study FT/PT

Speech@Emerson enables you to earn an MS online and pursue SLP certification in as few as 20 mos. Learn the same curriculum as the on-campus program. Study FT or PT.

  • Prepares you to pursue certification as an SLP generalist
  • In-person clinical placements at faculty-approved partner sites
  • As few as 20 months to complete

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Want to Become an SLP? Earn an MS Online at NYU

NYU Steinhardt’s online master of science program in Communicative Sciences and Disorders prepares aspiring speech-language pathologists with a comprehensive professional education.

  • Prepares students to pursue SLP licensure 
  • Accredited by ASHA’s Council on Academic Accreditation 
  • As few as six terms to complete 
  • Full-time and part-time plans of study

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Find the Best Online Speech Pathology Master’s Program for You

Online Master of Speech Language Pathology CAA Accreditation

A majority of states require an aspiring speech-language pathologist SLP to get their master’s in speech pathology from a program accredited by or equal to standards set by the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA) and its accrediting body, the Council on Academic Accreditation (CAA). It is important to know what your state requires in terms of accreditation so that you can choose a program that is valid for speech-language pathologist (SLP) licensure in your state.

Also, if you are interested in earning ASHA’s Certificate of Clinical Competence in Speech-Language Pathology (CCC-SLP), you will need to attend a CAA-accredited graduate SLP program. The CCC-SLP is only required by a handful of states, but there are benefits to ASHA certification: The Association indicates it could make you eligible for salary supplements in some states and school districts even if it is not required.

Not all online speech language pathology master’s programs are created equal, so accreditation or pending accreditation is an indicator that the program you are applying to has met certain standards.

Online Speech Pathologist Degree Program Descriptions

Below is a table comparing all of the ASHA-accredited online graduate speech pathology programs:

Cincinnati University

College of Allied Health Sciences

Master of Science in Speech-Language Pathology

Cincinnati, Ohio

Name of Degree: Master of Science in Speech-Language Pathology

Enrollment Type: Full-Time

Length of Program: 2.5 years

Credits: 61-66

Concentrations: N/A

Admission Requirements:

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Official transcripts
  • Course prerequisites
Learn more about the Master of Science in Speech-Language Pathology from Cincinnati University

East Carolina University

Master of Science in Communication Sciences and Disorders

Greenville, North Carolina

Name of Degree: Master of Science in Communication Sciences and Disorders

Enrollment Type: Full-Time

Length of Program: 2 years

Credits: 54-60

Concentrations:

Speech Language Pathology, Non-clinical

Admission Requirements:

  • Official transcripts
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • Writing prompt
  • Course prerequisites
  • Resume
  • Valid ID
  • Undergraduate degree
Learn more about the Master of Science in Communication Sciences and Disorders from East Carolina University

East Tennessee State University

Department of Audiology & Speech-Language Pathology

Master of Science in Speech-Language Pathology

Johnson City, Tennessee

Name of Degree: Master of Science in Speech-Language Pathology

Enrollment Type: Full-Time

Length of Program: 2 years

Credits: 51

Concentrations: N/A

Admission Requirements:

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Official transcripts
  • Personal statement
  • CV/resume
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • Documentation of completed observation hours (minimum 25)
  • Course prerequisites (6 credits in social/behavioral science, 3 credits in biological science, 3 credits in physical science, 3 credits in statistics, 15 credits in basic communication science)
Learn more about the Master of Science in Speech-Language Pathology from East Tennessee State University

Idaho State University

Master of Science in Speech-Language Pathology

Pocatello, Idaho

Name of Degree: Master of Science in Speech-Language Pathology

Enrollment Type: Full-Time

Length of Program: 3 years

Credits: 60-64

Concentrations: N/A

Admission Requirements:

  • Bachelor’s degree in CSD or related area
  • Official transcripts
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • Personal essay
  • CV/resume
  • Clinical observation (ASHA)
Learn more about the Master of Science in Speech-Language Pathology from Idaho State University

James Madison University

Master of Science in Speech-Language Pathology

Harrisonburg, Virginia

Name of Degree: Master of Science in Speech-Language Pathology

Enrollment Type: Full-Time

Length of Program: 3 years

Credits: 45

Concentrations: N/A

Admission Requirements:

  • Official transcripts
  • Video
  • Written statement
  • Two references
  • Course prerequisites in CSD
Learn more about the Master of Science in Speech-Language Pathology from James Madison University

University of Montana

College of Health

Master of Science in Speech-Language Pathology

Missoula, Montana

Name of Degree: Master of Science in Speech-Language Pathology

Enrollment Type: Full-Time

Length of Program: 2 years

Credits: 71

Concentrations: N/A

Admission Requirements:

  • Undergraduate degree in CSD (preferred, otherwise course prerequisites are required)
  • Course prerequisites
  • Official transcripts
  • Essay
  • Three letters of recommendation
Learn more about the Master of Science in Speech-Language Pathology from University of Montana

University of Northern Colorado

College of Natural and Health Sciences

Master of Arts in Speech-Language Pathology

Greely, Colorado

Name of Degree: Master of Arts in Speech-Language Pathology

Enrollment Type: Full-Time

Length of Program: 2 years

Credits: 63

Concentrations: N/A

University of St. Augustine for Health Sciences

College of Rehabilitative Sciences

Master of Science in Speech Language Pathology

Austin, Texas

Name of Degree: Master of Science in Speech Language Pathology

Enrollment Type: Full-Time

Length of Program: 1.5+ years

Credits: 55-58

Concentrations: N/A

Admission Requirements:

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Completed prerequisite course work in the basic sciences and communication sciences and disorders
  • Official transcripts
  • GRE Scores
  • Resume
  • Writing sample
  • Minimum GPA of 3.0 on program prerequisites preferred
  • Two letters of recommendation
  • Minimum of 25 guided observation hours in a speech-language pathology setting with an ASHA certified SLP is required
  • Comprehensive background check
  • TOEFL scores (if applicable)
  • Admission interview
Learn more about the Master of Science in Speech Language Pathology from University of St. Augustine for Health Sciences

University of Wisconsin Eau Claire

Master's in Communication Sciences and Disorders

Eau Claire, Wisconsin

Name of Degree: Master’s in Communication Sciences and Disorders

Enrollment Type: Full-Time

Length of Program: 3 years

Credits: 54

Concentrations: N/A

Admission Requirements:

  • Undergraduate Degree Requirement
  • Prerequisite Coursework
  • Official transcripts from all post-secondary institutions attended
  • Personal essay
  • Three letters of recommendation
Learn more about the Master's in Communication Sciences and Disorders from University of Wisconsin Eau Claire

Western Kentucky University

Master of Science in Speech-Language Pathology

Bowling Green, Kentucky

Name of Degree: Master of Science in Speech-Language Pathology

Enrollment Type: Full-Time and Part-Time

Length of Program: 2+ years

Credits: 60

Concentrations:

Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner, Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner

Admission Requirements:

  • GPA of 3.0 
  • GRE scores: 143 on the new scoring system for the Verbal portion. 3.5 score on the Writing portion
  • Official Transcripts
  • Personal Essays
  • References
Learn more about the Master of Science in Speech-Language Pathology from Western Kentucky University

Online Speech Therapy Master’s Program Admissions Requirements

Before you start applying to online SLP programs, make sure you meet the program’s admissions requirements. Requirements vary by school but will often include:

  • Prerequisite coursework (many programs either have a separate program for completing prerequisites or offer them as part of the master’s program).
  • Bachelor’s degree
  • GPA: online SLP programs are competitive and many require a 3.0 GPA
  • GRE test scores
  • Transcripts
  • Recommendation letters
  • Resume
  • Personal statement

Learn more about how to become a speech-language pathologist.

Accredited Online SLP Programs Offer Flexibility 

Online speech pathology master’s programs offer you the flexibility to go to class wherever you are. During semesters when there are no clinical hours, online SLP curriculums often make it easier to balance work and class. Many programs have options to go to school full or part time, so you can choose a schedule that works best for you.

Full-Time vs Part-Time Online Speech Pathology Master’s Programs

Part-time online SLP master’s programs spread coursework out over more semesters as a way to allow you more time for work or other commitments. Remember that no matter what type of online program you choose, there is usually less flexibility during practicum components. You may need to either be away from work for several weeks at a time to get clinical hours in or be able to work at a practicum site multiple days per week over a semester. Each program is different.

Non-Live vs Live Online Master’s in Speech Pathology Classes

Are you looking for classes where you can watch lectures in real time and ask professors and classmates questions? Some online master’s in speech pathology programs will offer synchronous courses like this, while others will be taught in an asynchronous format where you watch prerecorded lectures or learn in a way that is not lecture-based at all. There are also a few hybrid options available where online learning and in-class lectures are part of the program. Think about how you learn best and choose an online SLP program accordingly.

Clinical Field Placement Services for Speech Pathology Degree Students

The practicum is an integral part of a master’s in speech pathology, often requiring 400-plus hours of work in clinical settings. Depending on the program, placement services typically offered to on-campus students may not always extend to online speech-language pathology students living further away from campus. Online SLP programs offer varying levels of field placement services to help secure clinical sites for online students. Some programs will require that these students find placements on their own. Other programs will use the connections they have to find placements for online SLP students who are geographically close to the school but may not have the ability to place students who are farther away. There are also programs that are able to place students in a practicum site no matter where the student is located.

Some online SLP graduate programs require that a certain amount of practicum hours are completed at on-site clinics, so students may need to travel to the school for up to several weeks to complete those portions of the practicum. Think about what level of assistance you will want when securing your placements and how much you are able to travel if you do indeed need to go to campus for portions of the online program. These speech pathology clinical experiences may affect your preferred speech pathology job setting for your speech pathology career

8 FAQs About Getting a Master’s in Speech Pathology Online

Is a Graduate Degree Required to Become a Speech Language Pathologist?

ASHA’s 2020 Standards and Implementation Procedures for the Certificate of Clinical Competence in Speech-Language Pathology indicate that you need at least a master’s degree in the field to become an SLP in any state, so pursuing this degree is essential. While a master’s degree is required to become an SLP, most states also require licensure; however licensure requirements vary by state.

Do Online Speech Pathology Programs Require the GRE?

Depending on the speech pathology program you apply to, you may need to submit your GRE scores. While it is becoming more common for master’s in speech pathology programs to no longer require GRE scores, some programs that usually do require them are temporarily removing their standardized testing requirements because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Before applying, it is recommended to contact the school for the most up-to-date information regarding GRE requirements.

Is there Demand for Speech Pathologists?

Demand for the speech pathologist profession is predicted to grow 25% between 2019 and 2029 (five times the national average), according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).This growth is due to a number changes occurring including older baby boomers, increase in autism diagnoses, higher awareness of speech impairments in school-aged children and medical advancements are improving survival among premature babies and stroke victims. Because of the high demand, a speech pathology graduate degree may offer job security.

Is an Online Graduate Speech Pathology Program Offered in Your State?

Some online master’s in speech pathology programs are only offered to in-state students, usually designed to address a shortage of speech professionals in the area. Other times, a program may be offered nationwide but might not be able to operate in a few certain areas because of legal reasons. Make sure you are eligible to participate in the programs you apply to based on your location.

Are Online Master’s Programs in Speech Pathology Competitive?

Accredited online speech pathology graduate programs have to meet the same standards as on campus programs, meaning that they will offer curriculums with the same rigor required by ASHA and many state licensure boards. These programs often have on-campus counterparts, sourcing the same curriculums and even faculty. Aside from the fact that you can be in class and in your home at the same time, some programs are essentially the same ones that you would experience on campus.

What Are the Career Options for Someone with an Online Speech Therapy Degree?

Speech pathology careers offer a variety of experiences—you can work in different settings with different populations and choose to focus on a wide or narrow range of communicative science disorders. A master’s in SLP is certainly a degree where you can either see something new every day or choose to master a specialty that interests you.

How Much Do Speech Pathologists Earn on Average?

According to the BLS, in 2019 the median wage for a licensed speech pathologist was $79,120, which is nearly double the median salary for all occupations. The top 10% of speech pathologists earned more than $121,260 annually, with those working in nursing and residential care facilities earning the highest salary among the different industries at an average  median salary of $95,250 annually.

How Can an Online Speech Therapy Degree Make a Difference in Someone’s Life?

Communication is an essential part of life—how we express feelings, bond with others over conversation and create plans to work toward our goals and dreams. It can be very rewarding to help others who are not able to speak so easily to communicate in ways they previously weren’t able to or recover lost communication abilities. With every client in speech pathology, you are helping someone speak, swallow, organize their thoughts or improve communication in another way that greatly affects their life.