Master of Science in Speech-Language Pathology

Degree Type
Area of Interest
Health and Human Services
Degree Level
College of Nursing and Health
Sample Plan

The Viterbo MS-SLP program is designed to meet all the requirements for the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA) Certificate of Clinical Competence in Speech-Language Pathology (CCC-SLP) and for Wisconsin State Licensure for medical and/or educational practice as a speech-language pathologist.

Over the course of two years, students will gain an in-depth knowledge of the assessment, treatment, and challenges affecting individuals with communication disorders. The program provides a solid understanding of Deaf culture and the needs of diverse communities with in-person coursework and clinical experience. 

Program includes clinical experiences in health care facilities and schools .


Students enrolled in the MS-SLP program must maintain a grade point average (GPA) of 3.0 to continue in and graduate from this program. The MS-SLP GPA is based on all grades earned in the required and elective MS-SLP courses taken to meet knowledge and skills requirements for clinical practice in speech-language pathology. Any student whose MS-SLP GPA falls below 3.0 will be placed on probation for one semester, with a remediation plan in place. If the MS-SLP GPA is not raised during that semester, the student may not enroll in further MS-SLP courses.

Requirements (MS-SLP) ALL STUDENTS

  • Prior to starting the MS-SLP program, students must show completion of the following:
  1. Baccalaureate degree in Communication Disorders and Sciences or equivalent from an accredited institution.
  2. OR: any baccalaureate degree from an accredited institution and completion of a post-baccalaureate program from an accredited institution.
  3. Current cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) training for Health Professionals (American Heart Association).
  4. Up-to-date health history and immunization profile including: • Physical examination form — MS-SLP Physical Form; - Record of up-to-date immunization status including — tetanus, diphtheria, measles, mumps, rubella, hepatitis B, COVID-19 (complete series), varicella, and meningococcal meningitis • Results of an annual Tuberculin test. • Failure to have these documents on file by the first day of classes may result in being dropped from the professional sequence.
  5. Criminal background check.
  6. 25 hours of guided observation of clinical/educational speech pathology and/or audiology practice.
  • It is required that the student's health file and CPR certification remain current throughout the course of the program. Failure to comply will mean that the student will not be allowed to begin or to continue in clinical practicum experiences.
  • Federal and state statutes require that criminal background checks be completed for all persons who provide health care for others or who have access to people who receive care.
  • Clinical and educational agencies prohibit placement of students with criminal histories of specific crimes and offenses that have been identified as bars to employment or licensure (such as abuse, assault, or neglect).
  • Students are required to complete criminal background information disclosure statements at the beginning of each level of the program to ensure that requirements continue to be met. In addition, off-campus clinical and educational practicum sites may have other specific requirements that students must meet prior to placement.
  • Individuals whose criminal background check identifies bars to the provision of care in contracted agencies, or places restrictions on client contact, will not be allowed to progress in the MS-SLP program.
  • Viterbo University MS-SLP program utilizes a wide variety of community agencies to assist students in meeting the MS-SLP curriculum objectives. Each student is responsible for his/her own transportation to and from these clinical/educational agencies.
  • Studnts will be required to purchase their own professional liability insurance for any clinical experiences occurring outside of the university semester dates.
  • In order to progress in the MS-SLP program, students must earn a grade of B or higher in all MS-SLP courses. Students who earn a grade of BC or lower for any MS-SLP course will be placed on probation and a remediation plan will be put into place. Failure to complete the remediation plan will result in dismissal from the program.
  • In addition, students must maintain a cumulative grade point average (GPA) of 3.0 or higher throughout the MS-SLP program. Failure to do so will result in being dropped from the program.
Learning Outcomes

Meet all learning outcomes standards for Certification in Speech-Language Pathology (CCC-SLP) through the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA) and for Wisconsin state licensure to practice medical and/or educational speech-language pathology.

ASHA Knowledge and Skills Learning Outcomes Standards

Knowledge Outcomes

Standard IV-A
Demonstrated knowledge of statistics as well as the biological, physical, and social/behavioral sciences.

Standard IV-B
Demonstrated knowledge of basic human communication and swallowing processes, including the appropriate biological, neurological, acoustic, psychological, developmental, and linguistic and cultural bases. The applicant must have demonstrated the ability to integrate information pertaining to normal and abnormal human development across the life span.

Standard IV-C
Demonstrated knowledge of communication and swallowing disorders and differences, including the appropriate etiologies, characteristics, and anatomical/physiological, acoustic, psychological, developmental, and linguistic and cultural correlates in the following areas:

  • Speech sound production, to encompass articulation, motor planning and execution, phonology, and accent modification
  • Fluency and fluency disorders
  • Voice and resonance, including respiration and phonation
  • Receptive and expressive language, including phonology, morphology, syntax, semantics, pragmatics (language use and social aspects of communication), prelinguistic communication, paralinguistic communication (e.g., gestures, signs, body language), and literacy in speaking, listening, reading, and writing
  • Hearing, including the impact on speech and language
  • Swallowing/feeding, including (a) structure and function of orofacial myology and (b) oral, pharyngeal, laryngeal, pulmonary, esophageal, gastrointestinal, and related functions across the life span
  • Cognitive aspects of communication, including attention, memory, sequencing, problem solving, and executive functioning
  • Social aspects of communication, including challenging behavior, ineffective social skills, and lack of communication opportunities
  • Augmentative and alternative communication modalities

Standard IV-D
Demonstrated current knowledge of the principles and methods of prevention, assessment, and intervention for persons with communication and swallowing disorders, including consideration of anatomical/physiological, psychological, developmental, and linguistic and cultural correlates.

Standard IV-E
Demonstrated knowledge of standards of ethical conduct.

Standard IV-F
Demonstrated knowledge of the principles of basic and applied research and research design. In addition, the applicant must have demonstrated knowledge of how to access sources of research information and must have demonstrated the ability to relate research to clinical practice.

Standard IV-G
Demonstrated knowledge of contemporary professional issues, ethics, and diversity, equity, and inclusion.

Standard IV-H
Demonstrated knowledge of entry level and advanced certifications, licensure, and other relevant professional credentials, as well as local, state, and national regulations and policies relevant to professional practice.

Skills Outcomes
Standard V-A

Demonstrated skills in oral and written or other forms of communication.

Standard V-B
Practicum experiences sufficient in breadth and depth (at least 400 documented and supervised hours of direct patient/student contact hours) to achieve minimum competence levels in the following skills outcomes sufficient for entry into a post-graduate, clinical fellowship year (CFY) of professional practice:


  1. Conduct screening and prevention procedures, including prevention activities.
  2. Collect case history information and integrate information from clients/patients, family, caregivers, teachers, and relevant others, including other professionals.
  3. Select and administer appropriate evaluation procedures, such as behavioral observations, non-standardized and standardized tests, and instrumental procedures.
  4. Adapt evaluation procedures to meet the needs of individuals receiving services.
  5. Interpret, integrate, and synthesize all information to develop diagnoses and make appropriate recommendations for intervention.
  6. Complete administrative and reporting functions necessary to support evaluation.
  7. Refer clients/patients for appropriate services.


  1. Develop setting-appropriate intervention plans with measurable and achievable goals that meet clients'/patients' needs. Collaborate with clients/patients and relevant others in the planning process.
  2. Implement intervention plans that involve clients/patients and relevant others in the intervention process.
  3. Select or develop and use appropriate materials and instrumentation for prevention and intervention.
  4. Measure and evaluate clients'/patients' performance and progress.
  5. Modify intervention plans, strategies, materials, or instrumentation as appropriate to meet the needs of clients/patients.
  6. Complete administrative and reporting functions necessary to support intervention.
  7. Identify and refer clients/patients for services, as appropriate.

Interaction and Personal Qualities

  1. Communicate effectively, recognizing the needs, values, preferred mode of communication, and cultural/linguistic background of the individual(s) receiving services, family, caregivers, and relevant others.
  2. Manage the care of individuals receiving services to ensure an interprofessional, team-based collaborative practice.
  3. Provide counseling regarding communication and swallowing disorders to clients/patients, family,caregivers, and relevant others.      
  4. Adhere to the ASHA Code of Ethics and behave professionally.