Bilingual Emphasis Course Sequence (BECS)

The Bilingual Emphasis Course Sequence (BECS) is an option for students enrolled in West Chester University’s graduate program in Communication Sciences and Disorders (CSD). The purpose of BECS is to enhance the preparation of future speech-language pathologists with a special interest in working with Spanish-English bilingual individuals who have communication disorders.


 Students who are interested in BECS at West Chester University must do the following things:

  • Respond to BECS questions on the Supplementary Application of the CSD graduate program application.
  • Earn acceptance to the CSD graduate program
  • State decision to participate in BECS by the end of the second week of fall classes
  • Sign the BECS contract to indicate commitment to completing it.

BECS Academic curriculum

  • Students who participate in BECS take all of the same courses as students in the basic graduate curriculum.
  • BECS requirements are integrated through specialized assignments in the following courses: SPP 501, SPP 511, SPP 512, SPP 516, SPP 523, SPP 524, SPP 526, and SPP 570.
    • Instructors are notified of the BECS students enrolled in their classes
    • Instructors will permit these students to utilize a bilingual/bicultural focus with at least one paper in the class, graded in consultation with Dr. Patricia Swasey Washington.
    • For SPP 501, the literature review must address a bilingual area.
    • An elective BECS course (SPP 560) will be offered during the first summer of the graduate program. The instructor for this course will be Dr. Swasey Washington, and the topic will be “Assessment and Intervention with Bilingual School-Age Children”. Although this is currently an elective course, BECS students are strongly encouraged to complete it.

BECS Clinical Curriculum

  • One clinical practicum in speech-language pathology (SPP 551) for 3 semester credits will provide students with the opportunity to serve bilingual clients and/or clients with accent reduction issues under the supervision of Dr. Swasey Washington.
  • One school-based clinical affiliation (SPP 553) and one medical-based affiliation (SPP 552), each for 9 semester hours, will be completed in a setting with bilingual clients.

BECS Academic Standards

Once accepted into the BECS, students must demonstrate the following:

  • Achieve and maintain standards required of all graduate students in the CSD graduate program. (See the Department’s Graduate Student Handbook for further information on this topic)
  • Complete with a grade of “B” or better all assignments specific to the BECS (see academic requirements below)
  • Complete with a grade of “B” or better all elective courses associated with the BECS (see academic requirements below)
  • Complete with a grade of “B” or better all clinical practica in the on-campus and affiliation settings

Students will be dismissed from BECS if they demonstrate the following:

  • Earn a grade below "B" on a BECS-specific assignment, BECS-related elective course, clinical practicum (including a repeated course), and failing to meet BECS-related KASA standards through either the initial assessment or the first remediation.
  • Earn a semester grade below “B” in a BECS-related elective course.
  • Fail to maintain program standards required of all graduate students in CSD (see the Department’s Graduate Student Handbook).
  • Earn a semester grade below “B” in any clinical practicum (including a repeated course).

Documentation of BECS Completion

Students who complete the graduate program with BECS will receive a letter from the Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders documenting the completion of BECS as part of the graduate program.

Contact Us

If you would like further information about BECS, please contact the BECS Coordinator, Dr. Patricia Swasey Washington, at

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