The Department of Communication Disorders and Sciences has a three-dimensional mission incorporating teaching, research and service for the advancement of human potential in speech, voice, language and hearing. As part of a comprehensive university system dedicated to undergraduate and graduate instruction, teaching is always regarded as the first priority.
Communication Disorders and Sciences majors at both the undergraduate and graduate levels are assigned a faculty advisor. Department majors are required to meet with their academic advisors at least once each term for academic advisement prior to course registration. More frequent contact between student and advisor is encouraged. Prospective and new students at both the undergraduate and graduate levels should attend an orientation meeting as soon as possible for basic information on the fields of speech-language pathology and audiology, and assistance in formulating academic and career plans. These informal orientation meetings are held monthly. The schedule of orientation meetings (times, dates and places) is posted on the department’s website, or individuals may contact the department for times, dates and meeting places.
An advisor should be consulted regarding fulfillment of related coursework for professional licensure and certification requirements, which may include courses involving biology, human anatomy and physiology, physics, statistics, psychology, growth and development of children, reading instruction, the exceptional child and others.
The Speech Language Pathology advisors are Michael Biel, Edward P. Hall, Catherine A. Jackson, Karen Kochis-Jennings, Patricia J. Seymour, Christine Strike-Roussos, Elizabeth G. Weber and Janice Woolsey. The Audiology advisors are J. Stephen Sinclair and Karen Spayd. Dr. Spayd also advises undergraduate majors in Speech-Language Pathology. Drs. Sinclair and Hall will assist course planning each term for post-baccalaureate students in the Pre-Communication Disorders and Sciences program and for those students who are in Open University status. Consult the department website for information pertaining to students’ assignments to a specific advisor.
Program alumni with graduate degrees find varied career opportunities as speech-language pathologists and audiologists serving the needs of communicatively disabled persons across the life span. Employment opportunities are widely available due to the general population’s longer life and advances in technology and health. Program alumni find employment in California’s and the nation’s medical centers, skilled nursing facilities and other rehabilitative facilities, community speech and hearing centers, medical offices, public and private schools, and private practices. With approximately 100 graduates annually in the M.S. degree program in Speech-Language Pathology, the regional and national network of alumni is substantial and growing.
The Master of Science graduate program in Speech-Language Pathology is accredited by the Council on Academic Accreditation (CAA). The Master of Science graduate program in Audiology was accredited until December 31, 2006, after which a doctoral degree became the entry-level degree requirement and, therefore, admission of new students in Audiology was suspended. The department is accredited by the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing for the Clinical-Rehabilitative Services Credential (Language, Speech and Hearing Services and Audiology) and the Special Class Authorization (Aphasic). The department is one of the participating programs in the University’s accreditation by the National Council on Accreditation in Teacher Education.
Consumer complaints regarding the accreditation of the graduate program in Speech-Language Pathology may be addressed to the Council on Academic Accreditation of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA), (800) 498-2071.
Clubs and Societies
California State University, Northridge Chapter of the National Student Speech-Language Hearing Association (NSSLHA)
The mission of the CSUN Chapter of the National Student Speech-Language Hearing Association (NSSLHA) is (a) to unite students in the Department of Communication Disorders and Sciences with those with similar interests enrolled in other departments on the CSUN campus, (b) to provide relevant information to students concerning their academic tenure at California State University at Northridge, (c) to inform members of contemporary affairs, both local and national, that concern the professional fields of Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology, and (d) to facilitate the transition from undergraduate studies to graduate studies, and then from graduate studies to entry into the profession.
The department is housed within Monterey Hall, located on the south-eastern corner of the campus. The building is home to the department’s CSUN Language, Speech and Hearing Center (LSHC) with convenient client access to parking on Zelzah Avenue and in a parking lot adjacent to Monterey Hall. The department’s clinical facilities include extensive diagnostic and treatment resources for persons with a wide variety of speech, language, hearing, voice, swallowing and balance disorders, as well as space for teaching and research laboratories in anatomy/physiology, hearing/speech science, phonological disorders, language development and disorders, neurogenic disorders of communication, auditory electrophysiology and a hearing aid dispensary. The Language, Speech and Hearing Center jointly operates a vestibular and balance disorders laboratory with the Department of Physical Therapy. The building also contains a studio space for media production. Students have wireless access to the Internet for personal laptop computers, tablets and mobile devices throughout the building, including the department’s student library. The building houses all of the department’s academic offices for faculty and staff, as well as the business office, records room and materials preparation room of the CSUN Language, Speech and Hearing Center.
Distance Learning Program
The department offers the Master of Science degree with emphasis in Speech-Language Pathology in a distance learning (DL) program that is administered jointly with the CSUN Tseng College. The purpose of this program is to serve graduate students in Speech-Language Pathology who are unable to relocate close enough to travel regularly to the CSUN campus. Qualified graduate students are admitted to this program in cohorts (groups) every 12 months; cohort students take no courses on the residential campus. Students are not permitted to transfer between the residential program and the distance learning program. The DL courses are taught asynchronously with the regular University calendar, with students taking the entire course of study (57 units) as a cohort over a 36-month period. Courses are delivered to the homes and workplaces of DL students via Internet and all clinical practica are completed in the DL students’ home communities. The DL program charges tuition that reflects the cost of instruction. The M.S. degree in the DL program ultimately reflects the same prerequisite and requisite content as the residential degree, and the DL program meets CAA-ASHA certification and state licensure standards.
For California residents who hold bachelor’s degrees in Communication Disorders and Sciences or Speech-Language Pathology but are not pursuing graduate studies at this time, the CSUN Distance Learning Program offers the non-credit SLPA Certificate of Advanced Professional Development in SLPA Fieldwork. This 100-hour program, which includes both online study at home and an eight-week clinical field experience, is designed to facilitate career advancement.
The CSUN Distance Learning Program also offers a 2-year, fully online CDS Prerequisite (“Pre-CDS”) program, which prepares those with bachelor’s degrees in fields other than Communication Disorders and Sciences or Speech-Language Pathology for automatic admission into the DL’s Communication Disorders and Sciences master’s program.
For further information, please visit the DL program website.
Chair: Patricia Seymour
Monterey Hall (MH) 301
(818) 677-2852 (VOICE)