MA-SLP Prerequisite Information


Clinical Observation

Many programs require clinical observation before entry into their programs; however, the OSU program does not and instead provides this experience in the first term of the MA-SLP program.

Prerequisite Courses

Although prerequisite courses do not need to be completed before applying to the program, admission will be contingent upon successful completion of all prerequisites before the start of classes. Please be aware that having a large number of outstanding pre-requisite courses to take at the time of application may cause evaluators to lower their estimation of the competitiveness of the application. As many pre-requisites as possible should be completed by the time you apply. At least one course in each of the following areas is required: 

(OSU Course descriptions can be found in the Course Catalog under Subject Area "Speech and Hearing Science")

  • Phonetics and phonetic transcription (SPHHRNG 3320 at OSU) 
  • Normal language development (SPHHRNG 3330 at OSU)
  • Anatomy, physiology and science of speech (SPHHRNG 4420 at OSU)
  • Language science (SPHHRNG 4430 at OSU, or a course in general linguistics, psycholinguistics or language science)
  • An introductory course in audiology focusing on evaluation (SPHHRNG 4540 at OSU)
  • Aural rehabilitation (SPHHRNG 5732 at OSU)

Note: At many schools, including OSU, the audiology course and aural rehabilitation course each have their own prerequisites and this creates a sequence of four courses. Students without a strong background in science and math are encouraged to take the full sequence: SHS 3340 Basic Acoustics; SHS 4440 Anatomy, Physiology, and Science of Hearing; SHS 4540 Introduction to Audiology; and SHS 5732 Aural Rehabilitation.

Students who plan to take SHS 4540 or 5732 at OSU and who feel comfortable taking those courses without their prerequisites should contact the course instructor(s) to ask whether the instructor would allow them to take the course without its prerequisites.

  • a course in college-level statistics
  • a course in college-level physics or chemistry
  • a course in behavioral/social sciences
  • a course in biological sciences, which emphasizes content related to human or animal sciences such as biology; human anatomy and physiology; neuroanatomy and neurophysiology; human genetics; veterinary science

********Special note for students who plan to apply to begin the program in Autumn 2024 and beyond: Research Methods (SPHHRNG 5785 at OSU) will be added as prerequisite*********

Options for Completing the Prerequisite Courses

1. Continuing Education. Some students enroll as continuing education students for a year before entering graduate school (either at OSU or any other school that offers an undergraduate degree in communication disorders). This has the advantage of allowing the student to complete the full complement of courses at a more “leisurely” pace, often while paying undergraduate tuition rates. Continuing Education at OSU is managed by the Extended Education Program.

2. Online Education. Some students take the prerequisites courses as online distance education through OSU or other universities that offer comparable courses. The Department of Speech and Hearing Science at OSU has a Summer Distance Learning Institute, which offers many of the pre-requisite courses online. Students can complete up to four online courses during the OSU Summer Semester. One of the SHS prerequisites (SHS 4430 Language Science and Language Disorders) is not yet offered by OSU through the Summer Institute, but numerous universities offer comparable courses on-line. Courses such as Introduction to Linguistics or Introduction to Psycholinguistics courses are appropriate to use for this pre- requisite. 

3. Electives for an undergraduate degree. Students who are working on an undergraduate degree at a university that has some, or all, of the pre- requisite courses available can take the courses at that university as electives—a degree in Speech and Hearing Science is not necessary for admission. If not all of the courses are offered, the remainder can be taken on-line.

Please direct questions regarding prerequisites to Graduate Program Coordinator, Sarah Wendel at