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Why become a speech-language pathologist?

Speech-language pathologists are professionals concerned with evaluation, prevention, treatment, and research in human communication and its disorders. They work closely with teachers, physicians, psychologists, social workers, rehabilitation counselors and other members of an interdisciplinary team, yet they are autonomous and do not work under direct medical supervision. They work in a variety of settings, including schools, hospitals, rehabilitation centers, nursing care facilities, industry, government health facilities, research laboratories, and private practice.

Speech-language pathologists design and carry out comprehensive treatment plans to:

  • Help individuals learn correct production of speech sounds
  • Assist with developing proper control of the vocal and respiratory systems or correct voice production
  • Assist children and adolescents with language problems such as understanding and giving directions, answering and asking questions, understanding and using syntax and semantics, using appropriate social language and conveying ideas to others
  • Help individuals who stutter to increase the amount of fluent speech and to cope with their disorders
  • Assist individuals who have had strokes or suffered brain trauma to relearn language and speech skills
  • Counsel individuals with speech and language disorders and their families or caregivers to understand their disorder and to communicate more effectively in educational, social and vocational settings
  • Advise individuals and the community on how to prevent speech and language disorders.
Speech-language pathologists are involved in research activities that seek to increase knowledge of the normal processes of speech and language production; the etiology, symptomatology, and prognosis of various disorders, and efficacious methods for evaluation and treatment of disorders. Areas of specialization include disorders of developmental language, neurogenic speech, and language, fluency, voice, articulation/phonology, swallowing and alternative and augmentative communication.

What does CMU's SLP program have to offer?

The Master of Arts education program in Speech-Language Pathology at Central Michigan University leads to eligiblity for clinical certification and focuses on preparing professionals to assess, diagnose, and clinically treat people with a variety of communication disorders. CMU's Master's in Speech-Language Pathology program offers:

  • Courses taught by high-quality instructors in a state-of-the-art facility
  • A multitude of clinical opportunities, both on- and off-campus, that allow students to work with individuals of all ages with diverse communication needs under the supervision of skilled clinical instructors 
  • Excellent research facilities (i.e., speech, voice, language, augmentative and alternative communication, and acoustic laboratories, computers, and software programs) and various opportunities for students to engage in research.
  • A warm, welcoming environment where student learning is put first and collaboration is encouraged.

Program Mission

The Speech-Language Pathology Graduate Program at Central Michigan University is committed to the development of exemplary speech-language pathologists through a threefold mission of 1) teaching, 2) service, and 3) research. A committed faculty helps students develop critical thinking, high ethical standards, and state-of-the-art skills to guide them throughout their professional careers. The faculty demonstrates these qualities through supporting student involvement in clinical service and applied research that focuses on understanding or improving all forms of communication, and through community outreach, that enhances the lives of individuals with diverse communication abilities by responding as effective professionals and contributing citizens in a multicultural society.

Program Goals

  1. Graduates will appropriately diagnose and evaluate various pathologies as well as implement appropriate treatment options for patients with speech, language and swallowing impairments.
  2. Graduates will appropriately appraise research methods used in the profession in order to become effective consumers of research and have a commitment to continuing education in Speech-Language Pathology.
  3. Graduates will complete the variety of coursework and supervised clinical experiences necessary to meet the requirements for the Certificate of Clinical Competence in Speech-Language Pathology (CCC-SLP) from the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA).
  4. Graduates will obtain the judgment necessary to provide professional and ethical Speech-Language Pathology services to the public regardless of age, race or culture.