Admission Requirements & Procedure

Who May Apply to the Graduate Program in Speech-Language Pathology (SLP)?

The Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders welcomes qualified applicants from mainstream and diverse cultural backgrounds. An applicant must have completed (or be in the process of completing) an undergraduate degree or its equivalent in communication sciences and disorders and meet the following application requirements.

Application Requirements

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 bridge 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 (aka personal statement) describing future goals and aspirations.
  4. Submit two letters of recommendation, preferably from faculty who have taught courses completed by the applicant.
  5. 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 a combination 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 introduction 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 the Essential Functions Policy

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.

International Applicants

International applicants whose native language is not English are required to provide proof of English proficiency for admission to the SLP graduate program. They may demonstrate the English proficiency requirement by submitting results from the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or International English Language Testing System (IELTS) exam. Scores representing appropriate levels of proficiency are listed below:

TOEFL ( TOEFL iBT (internet-based) TOEFL Essentials
Writing 18 8
Speaking 18 8
Listening 14 8
Minimum Overall Requirement 80 8
IELTS ( or IELTS IELTS Indicator
Reading 6.5 6.5
Listening 6.0 6.0
Writing 5.5 5.5
Minimal Overall Requirement 6.5 6.5

International applicants should also visit the Graduate School web page describing Additional Requirements for International Students.

Contact us

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

Phone: 610 436-3218

E-mail Mareile Koenig

Application Process

Applications to WCU's SLP graduate program are managed through the Communication Sciences and Disorders Centralized Application Service (CSDCAS). Please see below for information about CSDCAS:

  1. CSDCAS Customer Service Information
    Customer Service is available Monday through Friday from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm EST.
    Phone (617) 612-2030
    CSDCAS Customer Service E-mail
  2. CSDCAS Applicant Portal Link
    The applicant portal link will open on August 2nd.
    View the CSDCAS Portal
  3. CSDCAS address
    All official transcripts MUST be sent to CSDCAS at the address below:
    CSDCAS Verification Department
    PO Box 9113
    Watertown, MA 02471
  4. CSDCAS Application Deadlines
    All application materials must have been received by CSDCAS by January 15th. It is each applicant's responsibility to see to it that the January 15th deadline is met. Materials received later than January 15th will not be considered, and incomplete applications will not be processed.
  5. GRE Code
    Please provide ETS with the CSDCAS GRE Institution code unique to West Chester University's SLP graduate program. This code is 7710

Required Application Materials

This following materials must be submitted to the CSDCAS portal:

  • Official undergraduate transcripts
  • A 500-word essay (personal statement) describing future goals and how West Chester University can assist in achieving these goals.
  • Two letters of recommendation
  • Applicants who accept an invitation to WCU's graduate program will be required to provide documentation of 25 clinical observation hours prior to the first semester of classes.

Additional Information for International Applicants

  • Foreign transcript evaluation must be completed by a National Association of Credential Evaluation Services (NACES) member evaluation service like World Education Services (WES). View a listing of NACES member evaluators
  • All applicants must demonstrate a reasonable degree of English speech and language proficiency. This may be measured by a written essay and/or personal interview. (This requirement specifically addresses applicants whose dominant language may not be English.)

Questions about Prerequisites for Admission or Program Components

If you have questions about the prerequisites or content of the MA SLP program please click on the FAQS tab of the Graduate Program menu

Financial Aid

Information about financial aid is available at Financial Aid Website

Graduate Assistantships (GAs)

A limited number of half-time Graduate Assistantships are available for incoming graduate students in SLP. A Graduate Assistantship provides a waiver for 6 semester hours of tuition per semester and it provides a small stipend. In return, Graduate Assistants provide 10 hours of work per week under the supervision of a professor within the Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders.. To indicate your interest in being considered for a GA position, please respond to the question about the Graduate Assistantship on the Questions page of WCU's web pages within CSDCAS. The award of GAs is generally made in August.

Contact Us

If you have additional questions about the application process, please contact Dr. Mareile Koenig, the Graduate Program Coordinator for the Speech-Language Pathology program at

E-mail Mareile Koenig
Back to top of page.