Speech-Language Pathology Graduate Program


The Speech-Language Pathology program’s three-year strategic plan is in alignment with the overarching missions of the college and university and, as such, embraces the ethics of Christian faith, scientific discovery and high-quality academic and professional preparation of our students. In collaboration with college and department administration, the SLP faculty have delineated four Focus Areas for our three-year strategic plan: 


Focus Area 1: Providing pre-professional training informed by the Christian worldview (BR, GM; SLO 6 & 7)

Issue: A distinctive feature of our program is the emphasis by faculty to openly integrate their faith with all aspects of their work. One application of this is helping students develop a global, holistic perspective of the field of speech-language pathology. Speech-language pathology is a helping profession and patient/client/student outcomes are maximized when clinicians reflect on the ethics embedded within the Christian worldview such as love for others, selflessness, accountability, and integrity. While the Christian worldview can be applied in all areas of life, we are exploring ways to increase our effectiveness to integrate the Christian worldview into our pre-professional training program.


  • As a program, we will develop a working definition of a Christian worldview that is accessible to all students regardless of faith or background and include this definition on course syllabi.
  • Creation of content and assessments to support SLO 7 in at least four courses.
  • On an annual basis, at least one faculty member will report a new strategy, assessment, or material utilized to integrate faith into pedagogy.


Focus Area 2: Committing to effective pedagogy in the classroom (AP; SLOs 1-7)

Issue: The program’s primary strength is the effectiveness of our instruction as measured by student outcomes. We have identified some opportunities for improvement such as expanding scholarly collaborations with students, bringing to fruition our emerging focus on the scholarship of teaching and learning (SOTL), and continuing faculty training in elements of effective pedagogy.


  • Create a course sequence/schedule for a five-semester program to fully explore the feasibility of modifying our program of study.
  • Create an internal SOTL workshop where faculty share pedagogic strategies and outcomes on a yearly basis.
  • At least one faculty member will attend one professional conference featuring content related to SOTL per year and report a key takeaway to the CSD faculty.
  • Support at least one faculty member to pursue a research doctorate during this strategic plan by reducing non-essential department/university duties.
  • At least one faculty member will collaborate with at least one graduate student on a scholarly project yearly.


Focus Area 3: Providing high-quality clinical education (AP, GM, ES; SLOs 1-7)

Issue: Our students have access to an array of clinical education experiences and are prepared to enter the profession in whatever capacity/context they desire. However, there are variables outside our control that occasionally limit our ability to place students in their desired settings.


  • Create a plan to utilize the CEC for more than one clinical context for our practicum students.
  • Utilize Calipso and LMS software to enhance supervisor training and support by creating and disseminating supervision tips, best practices, and problem-solving strategies.
  • Develop a retention plan for clinical supervisors to promote ongoing, mutually beneficial relationships with our supervisors and their sites.
  • Create a student handbook exclusively dedicated to clinical education so students and supervisors have access to concise policies and procedures.


Focus Area 4: Connecting students to culturally and linguistically diverse scholarly and professional opportunities, both locally and globally (GM, ES; SLOs 4-6)

Issue: As we prepare students to enter the workplace, it is critical that they understand the current academic, professional, and cultural trends that influence our field. Relatedly, we are committed to recruiting and training graduate students from diverse cultural/linguistic backgrounds to enter the workplace. As such, facilitating communication and collaboration among students, professionals, faculty, and alumni is increasingly important.


  • Compile three years of graduate admissions data to assess cultural and racial/ethnic diversity of our cohorts, and use this data to examine trends and recruitment effectiveness over time.
  • Creation of content and assessment to support SLO 6 in at least four courses.
  • Engage Advisory Council once per year to support academic, clinical, and professional relevance of program offerings.
  • Recruit at least three graduate students to participate in one professional conference per year when feasible.
  • Share at least two pieces of professional/community information on social media per semester.
  • Create self-reflection tools to help students integrate cultural competence into each practicum experience, especially as it pertains to the influence of culture (their own and their client’s/caregiver’s/family members’) on the provision of speech-pathology services.


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