Students throwing their graduation caps in the air

The right online speech pathology graduate degree is different for everyone- it depends on your schedule, where you wish to practice, where you live, and how you learn best. To make the decision on what’s best for you easier, we have compiled a list fully online speech pathology master’s programs as well as information on some of the factors you should take into consideration.

 

Fully Online Master’s in Speech Pathology Programs

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

 

Featured Online Speech Pathology Master’s Programs

School
Live Classes1
Mobile App (Offline Capable)
 

Field Placement Services
Nationwide Availability2
New York University Yes Yes Yes Yes
Emerson College Yes Yes Yes Yes

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Online Master’s in Speech Pathology Programs

School
Live Classes1
Mobile App (Offline Capable)
Field Placement Services
Nationwide Availability2
California State University, Northridge No No Yes Yes
East Carolina University No No Yes Yes
Florida State University Yes No Yes No
Idaho State University No No No Yes
James Madison University Some No Yes Yes
Nova Southeastern University No No Yes No
Tennessee State University Yes No Yes Yes
University of Akron No No Yes No
University of Cincinnati No No Yes No
University of Montana Yes Yes Yes Yes
University of Northern Colorado No No Yes Yes
University of Wisconsin Eau Claire No No No Yes
Western Kentucky University Yes No No Yes

Last Updated: 10/22/18

Live classes are defined as classes where there are specific class times each week where students are able to log on and communicate with each other and the professor as the professor delivers a live lecture.

Programs that are considered nationwide may be unable to operate in specific states. Always check to make sure that you can enroll in an online program from the state you are in. Local programs are designed for students who live in state or within a certain radius of the school, often to address an SLP shortage in that area.


 Learn more about Speech@NYU’s Online Master’s in Communicative Sciences and Disorders:

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Online Master’s in Speech Pathology Program Descriptions

New York University, Steinhardt, Online Master’s in Communicative Sciences and Disorders

New York University Logo

Program Length: Full and part time options available that can be completed in 7-10 semesters, not including “foundation” or prerequisite courses. A total of 48 semester hours are required

GPA Requirement: 3.0, 3.2 in Communicative Sciences Disorders courses

Structure: Classes for the online master’s in CSD are fully synchronous- students log into live lectures where they can see and speak to the professor and classmates. For this program, you are only required to be on campus for two 3-4 day clinical immersions that will serve as your first 2 practicum requirements

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Emerson College, Online Master of Science in Communication Disorders

Emerson College Logo

Program Length: This is a part time program that is completed over the course of 20-36 months. The total number of semester hours required is 54

GPA Requirement: Unspecified

Structure: Classes for the online master’s are synchronous- students are able to speak with one another and the professor during live classes in a virtual “classroom”. The only on campus requirement is two immersions

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California State University Northridge, Tseng College, Online Master of Science Communicative Disorders

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Program Length: This is a part time program that takes 3.5 years to complete. A total of 61 semester hours are required

GPA Requirement: 2.5, but above a 3.5 in CSD related coursework is suggested

Structure: Classes for the online master’s in speech pathology are asynchronous.  There are no on campus requirements


East Carolina University, College of Allied Health Sciences, Online MS Communication Sciences and Disorders

East Carolina University Logo

Program Length: This program is only available full time and takes 3 years to complete. 54 total semester hours are required

GPA Requirement: 3.0, 3.2 in SLP prerequisite courses

Structure: Classes are asynchronous. Only on campus requirement is July orientation. If not matched to a clinical residency, some practicum may be completed on campus


Florida State University, School of Communication Science and Disorders, Online Master’s Program

Florida State University LogoProgram Length: This is a part time program that takes 3 years to complete.  60 semester hours are required

GPA Requirement: 3.0

Structure: Classes are synchronous and there are no on campus requirements. One must be a resident of Florida to enroll in this program


Idaho State University, ISU Meridian Health Science Center, Online Master of Science Speech-Language Pathology

Idaho State University Logo

Program Length: This is a part time program that takes 3 years to complete. 60 semester hours are required

GPA Requirement: 3.0

Structure: Classes are asynchronous. On campus requirements include 8 weeks during the first summer of the program and 1 week during the second summer 


James Madison University, College of Health and Behavioral Studies, Online Master’s in Speech-Language Pathology

James Madison University LogoProgram Length: This is a part time, 3 year, 45 semester hour program

GPA Requirement: 3.25

Structure: There is a mix of synchronous and asynchronous classes. On campus requirements include orientation and a practicum during the second summer


Nova Southeastern University, College of Health Care Sciences, Online Master’s in Speech-Language Pathology

Nova Southeastern Logo

Program Length: This is a full or part time program that takes 3 to 6 years to complete. 53 semester hours are required

GPA Requirement: 3.2

Structure: Asynchronous classes. On campus requirement is a 3 day kickoff


Tennessee State University, College of Health Sciences, Online Master of Science in Speech and Hearing Science with a Concentration in Speech-Language Pathology

Tennessee State University Logo

Program Length: This is a part time program that takes 8 semesters to complete. The total semester hours required is 53

GPA Requirement: 3.5

Structure: Classes are synchronous. Students may be required to go to campus for exams or activities best completed on campus. Two summer clinical practicum experiences are completed on campus as well


University of Akron, School of Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology, Online Master of Arts in Speech-Language Pathology

University of Akron logo

Program Length: This is a part time program that takes 8 semesters to complete. A total of 63 semester hours are required.

GPA Requirement: 3.0

Structure: Classes are asynchronous. There are no on campus requirements, but you must live within a few hour radius of the program


University of Cincinnati, College of Allied Health Sciences, Online MA in Communication Sciences and Disorders

University of Cincinnati LogoProgram Length: This is a full or part time program that takes 3 years to complete. 65 semester hours are required

GPA Requirement: 3.0

Structure: Classes are asynchronous. Only on campus requirement is orientation at start of program. Must live within a few hours of the program


University of Montana, Phyllis J Washington College of Education and Human Sciences, Online Master of Science in Communicative Sciences and Disorders

University of Montana LogoProgram Length: This is a full or part time program that takes between 2 and 5 years to complete.  68 semester hours are required

GPA Requirement: 3.0

Structure: Synchronous classes are completed at the same time as on campus students. You are able to interact with the class during lectures. Students must be on campus for the first clinical practicum


University of Northern Colorado, College of Natural and Health Sciences, Online Master of Arts in Speech-Language Pathology

University of Northern Colorado LogoProgram Length: A 3 year, 63 semester hour, part time program where you fulfill the requirement of working as an SLPA as you complete the program

GPA Requirement: 3.0

Structure: Classes are asynchronous. Students must be on campus for two weeks in July during the first summer


University of Wisconsin Eau Claire, College of Education and Human Sciences, Online Master of Science in Communication Sciences and Disorders

University of Wisconsin Eau Claire logo

Program Length: This is a part time, 3 year program. 45 semester hours are required

GPA Requirement: 2.75, 3.25 in CSD coursework

Structure: Classes are asynchronous. Students must attend 3 one-week residencies, 1 per summer, on campus


Western Kentucky University, College of Health and Human Services, Online Master of Science in Communication Disorders

Western Kentucky University LogoProgram Length: This is a full or part time program that can be completed in 3-12 semesters. 60 semester hours are required

GPA Requirement: 3.5

Structure: Classes are synchronous. Students are required on campus for 1 six week clinical internship and for a clinical externship as well

 

Online Master’s in Speech Pathology Accreditation

About half of states require an aspiring speech-language pathologist SLP to get his or her 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 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. This certificate is only required by a handful of states, but according to ASHA it can make you eligible for salary supplements is 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 a good indicator that the program you are applying to is high quality.


Speech@Emerson Logo

 

Emerson College offers an online master’s in speech-language pathology with the same curriculum as its top-ranked on-campus program.

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Live vs Non 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 pre-recorded 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 both part of the program. Think about how you learn best and choose an online SLP program accordingly.

 

Online Master’s in Speech Pathology Field Placement Services

The practicum is an integral part of a master’s in speech pathology, often requiring 400+ 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 further 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 some 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.


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

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Full 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.

 

Is the Online SLP Master’s 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 areas due to legal reasons. Make sure you are eligible to participate in the programs you apply to based on your location.

 

Why Get a Master’s in Speech Pathology Online?

 

Online Speech Pathology Master’s Programs Offer Flexibility

Online speech pathology master’s programs offer you the flexibility to go to class wherever you are. During semesters where 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.

 

Online Master’s Programs in Speech Pathology are 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 both 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 sames one that you would experience on campus.

 

Demand for Speech Pathologists is High

It is a good time to become a speech pathologist, with demand for the profession growing 18% in the next 10 years (twice the national average), according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. This growth is due to a number changes occurring across all age groups:

  • The baby boomers are growing older, and strokes, dementia and other illnesses associated with aging will increase the occurrence of speech-language disabilities in older Americans.
  • The increase in autism diagnoses has led to a need for more SLPs to treat social communication disorders in schools.
  • A higher awareness of stuttering and other speech impairments in children has increased the need for SLPs in school aged children.
  • Medical advancements are improving survival among premature babies and stroke victims, two populations who are more likely to have speech disorders.

Because of the high demand, a speech pathology graduate degree may offer job security.

 

Online Speech Pathology Master’s Programs Lead to a Wide Range of Career Options

Speech pathology careers offer a variety of experiences – you can work in different settings, with different populations, and can 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.

 

Speech Pathology is a Rewarding Field

Communication is an essential part of life – how we express feelings, bond with others over conversation, and create plans to work towards 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 impacts his or her life.

 

SLPs Need a Graduate Degree

To become an SLP in any state, you need at least a master’s degree in the field, so pursuing this degree is essential.


Learn more about Speech@Emerson’s Online Master’s in Communication Disorders:

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