Department of Communication
Sciences and Disorders

West Chester University

Dr. Cheryl D. Gunter, Chair
201 Carter Drive, Suite 400
West Chester, PA  19383
Phone:  610.436.2115
Fax:  610.436.3388

Admission Requirements


Graduate Students


Requirements for admission to the M.A. program in Speech Language Pathology:

The Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders welcomes qualified applicants from mainstream and diverse cultural backgrounds. To be qualified, an applicant must (1) meet the general requirements for admission to a graduate degree program at West Chester University and (2) meet the following application requirements of the CSD Program:

  1. Present an undergraduate background of at least 30 semester hours including the following content areas: chemistry or physics, biology, statistics, lifespan development, neurology, anatomy and physiology of the speech and hearing mechanism, speech and language development, phonetics, speech disorders, language disorders, hearing disorders, basic speech and hearing science, and supervised clinical observations.  PLEASE NOTE: Some applicants to WCU's MA program complete their undergraduate degrees or Pre-SLP brdige programs in institutions where some of this course work is not included.  In such cases, if these students are admitted to WCU's program, we work with them to create a plan for their completion of these prerequisites. A description of the expected content associated with each of the prerequisite courses is provided below.
  2. Present undergraduate transcripts showing cumulative and major GPAs of at least a 3.0.
  3. Demonstrate proficiency in written communication by formulating a 500-word essay (sks personal statement) describing future goals and aspirations.
  4. Submit Graduate Record Examination (GRE) test scores.
  5. Submit a Structured Vita formatted according to specific instructions available on the Application and Admission Procedures page in the drop down menu of the Graduate Program tab
  6. Submit two letters of recommendation, preferably from faculty who have taught courses completed by the applicant.
  7. Applicants who receive and accept an invitation to join WCU's graduate program must be prepared to submit documentation for the completion of 25 supervised clinical observation hours. .

Content Description of Prerequisites Courses

The first 4 content areas, below, are consistent with one of the requirements established by ASHA as a prerequisites to apply for CCC-SLP. The remaining content areas represent requirements established by WCU's Department of CSD for graduate studies in SLP. However, we are aware that undergraduate programs in CSD vary somewhat in how the organize and offer content.. Occasionally, students are admitted to WCU's SLP program even though they are missing one of the competencies on this list. When that occurs, student are expected to complete a course that covers the content they are lacking. This must be done in addition to the standard MA curriculum.

  1. Physical science - An undergraduate course in Chemistry or physics
  2. Biology - a course covering basic principles of biology. Cell theory, metabolism, genetics, development, diversity of life forms, and ecology.
  3. Statistics - a course on basic concepts of statistics. Frequency distributions, measures of central tendency and variability, probability and theoretical distribution, significance of differences, and hypothesis testing.
  4. Lifespan development - one or acombination of courses that address research findings and theoretical issues related to developmental processes across the entire lifespan (i.e., from the prenatal phase to senescence).
  5. Introduction to Communication Sciences and Disorders - An introductory survey of normal processes and disorders of speech, language, and hearing
  6. Anatomy of Speech and Hearing - A study of the anatomy and physiology of structures and systems associated with the speech and hearing mechanisms.
  7. Speech and Hearing Science - Fundamental concepts of acoustics as related to speech production and speech perception.
  8. Speech and Language Development - Normal communication development, including a consideration of theoretical models, developmental milestones, and variations observed in the performance of individuals from diverse cultural and linguistic backgrounds.
  9. Introduction to Phonetics - Introduction to the International Phonetic Alphabet and its use in transcribing normal and disordered speech. Emphasis is placed on broad and narrow transcription skills.
  10. Speech and Voice Disorders - The symptomatology, etiology, assessment, and treatment of communication disorders associated with speech and voice.
  11. Language Disorders - the symptomatology, etiology, assessment, and treatment of communication disorders associated with developmental and acquired language disorders.
  12. Hearing Disorders - An inroduction to audiology and its relation to other medical and educational fields concerned with hearing impairments. Developmental, medical, social physical and psychological properties of hearing and sound. Introduction of assessment techniques.
  13. Neurology of Speech and Hearing - examination of the neuroanatomy and neurophysiology of the speech and hearing mechanism.



Essential functions expected of students in the M.A. Program:

In addition to meeting the academic and clinical pre-requisites described above, applicants to the MA program must also be able to demonstrate certain essential functions, with or without reasonable accommodations. These functions involve physical health, motor skills, observational skills, communication skills, cognitive skills, and behavioral/emotional health. Each is described in a document at the following link: Essential Functions (2009)

Applicants are expected to read this document. Students who are accepted into the M.A. program are required to sign the document indicating their commitment to this standard.


For information about the application process, please click on this link -> Application Process

Contact us

Mareile Koenig , Ph.D., CCC-SLP
Graduate Program Coordinator

Phone: 610 436-3218

Department Office: 610 436-3401