Graduate Program

Degrees Offered

  • Master of Science in Speech-Language Pathology (M.S.)
  • Doctor of Philosophy in Communication Sciences and Disorders (Ph.D.)

Graduate Advisor
Rick Arenas, Ph.D.

Any changes made after initial advisement must receive prior approval from an advisor. Failure to obtain this approval can extend the program by one year.

Master of Science in Speech-Language Pathology

Application Deadlines

Fall semester: February 1

Only applications received by this deadline are assured of consideration.

The Department of Speech and Hearing Sciences awards the Master of Science degree in Speech-Language Pathology under both Plan I (thesis) and Plan II (non-thesis) according to regulations set forth in the Graduate Program section of this Catalog. The Council on Academic Accreditation in Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA) accredits the program. All students must fulfill the academic and practicum requirements for the Certificate of Clinical Competence set forth by ASHA and specified by the department. Students must also comply with the requirements set forth in the Speech and Hearing Sciences Graduate Student Handbook. Persons with a bachelor's degree in a field other than Speech and Hearing Sciences are encouraged to apply. Advisement materials specifying admission requirements and related material are available upon request from the department and on the Department of Speech and Hearing Sciences Web site. All applicants should obtain and review these materials prior to initiating the admission process.

Students entering the graduate program must have earned grades of at least "C" in the courses used to meet the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association requirements of 3 credit hours in Biological Sciences, 3 credit hours in Physical Sciences, 3 credit hours in Social/Behavioral Sciences, and 3 credit hours in Statistics. These courses may be the same courses used to meet other college or university requirements. They may not include remedial coursework. Students who have not completed these requirements are required to do so within the first 3 semesters after acceptance into the graduate program in order to continue their enrollment.

All students entering the graduate program are responsible for completion of the following undergraduate courses or their equivalent within the first 3 semesters of graduate enrollment, with a grade of at least "B": SHS *303, 310, 321, 330, *425, 428, 430 (530), 431, 450, *458, and 459. Courses or their equivalents that were taken more than six years before entering the graduate program, or courses for which grades lower than "B" were received, cannot be used to fulfill this requirement. The graduate advisor, in consultation with the Curriculum and Advisement Committee, determines whether a course may be considered equivalent and decide how the requirement must be fulfilled: by taking or re-taking the course, by testing out or by auditing.

The Speech-Language Pathology program includes the basic sciences requirements (see above) and SHS 300- and 400-level courses listed above as well as the following 500-level courses: SHS 500 (at least 4 enrollments to include no more than 2 summer sessions), 501, 502, 503, 504, 506, 507, 517, 525, 531, 532, 533, 534, 535, 538, 557, 558, and one 500-level elective that may be selected from department course offerings or from course offerings from a variety of departments (subject to approval by the SHS graduate advisor). SHS 506 must be taken in the first year of enrollment in 500-level classes. A minimum grade of "B" is required for all 500-level coursework.

Doctor of Philosophy in Communication Sciences and Disorders

Application Deadlines

We review applications on an ongoing basis. Priority review is given to students who apply by February 1 for Fall admittance, by August 1 for Spring admittance, and by December 1 for Summer admittance.

The Ph.D. in Communication Sciences and Disorders is an individualized mentor-based doctoral program designed to prepare researchers and scholars to be leaders of discovery within the field. All applicants should contact potential mentors from the department who may be willing to serve as the student’s primary advisor throughout the student’s program. See the SHS department website for details about how to apply to the program.


The Ph.D. program requires a minimum of 74 credit hours total. At least 50% of the student’s total credit hours must be completed at UNM.

Each student’s individual program plans will be determined by the student’s Ph.D. committee, in consultation with the student. Requirements for students who have completed a master’s degree in speech-language pathology within the past 7 years include:

  • Core coursework: SHS 459, approved course in academic writing (6 credit hours)
  • Research: SHS 606, statistics, additional methods/statistics/tools/grant-writing/lab experience (15 credit hours)
  • Specialty content: Selected with advisor and program committee (24 credit hours)
  • Teaching: OILS 583, ED PY 630, SHS 610 (5 credit hours)
  • Electives: Additional credits from research methods or specialty areas (6 credit hours)
  • Dissertation: SHS 699 (18 credit hours)

Before advancing to candidacy (also known as All But Dissertation, or ABD), students must have successfully completed all of their non-dissertation coursework and passed their comprehensive exams.

Foreign Language: In addition to the coursework requirements, students must fulfill the department's foreign language requirement either through the various options approved by the Graduate Studies office or through satisfactory completion of an alternative methodology option to be determined by the student in consultation with the student’s committee on studies and the chairperson of the department.

Comprehensive Qualifying Examination: The comprehensive qualifying examination is taken after completion of coursework. The primary purpose of this exam is to determine the student's ability to synthesize the subject matter and various methodologies covered during his or her time in the program. Detailed guidelines for the comprehensive examination are available at the Speech and Hearing Sciences department.

Non-Degree Students

Non-degree Advisor
Amy Neel, Ph.D.

Email the non-degree Advisor for information before enrolling in SHS courses.

Non-degree students seeking admission to the graduate program in Speech-Language Pathology may enroll in the following courses prior to a decision regarding admission: SHS *302, *303, 310, 321, 330, *425, 428, 430, 431, 450, *458, and 459; and up to 12 credit hours selected from the following: SHS 506, 507, 525, and 531. For courses taken on a non-degree basis, students must earn a grade of "B" or higher to fulfill graduate course requirements (including undergraduate deficiencies/prerequisites) upon admission to the graduate program.

Students who have completed an undergraduate degree in Speech and Hearing Sciences may enroll as non-degree students in no more than 12 credit hours of SHS 500-level academic courses (permission of instructor required), and may not include courses in clinical practice and/or internship.


SHS *302. Introduction to Communicative Disorders. (3)

SHS *303. Introduction to Phonetics. (3)

SHS 310. Anatomy and Physiology of Human Communication. (3)

SHS 321. Introduction to Audiology. (3)

SHS 330. Introduction to Communication Sciences. (3)

SHS *425. Aural Rehabilitation. (3)

SHS 428. Phonological Disorders in Children. (3)

SHS 430 / 530. Language Development. (3)

SHS 431. Language Disorders in Children. (3)

SHS 450. Neural Basis of Communication. (3)

SHS 451. Undergraduate Problems. (1-3 to a maximum of 6 Δ)

SHS *458. Preclinical Training. (3)

SHS 459. Multicultural Considerations in Communication. (3)

SHS 490. Topics in Speech, Language, and Hearing Sciences. (1-3 to a maximum of 6 Δ)

SHS 500. Clinical Practice. (2 to a maximum of 12 Δ)

SHS 501. Clinical Foundations. (1)

SHS 502. Clinical Diagnostics. (1)

SHS 503. Clinical Case Studies. (1)

SHS 504. Audiology Clinic . (1)

SHS 506. Reading and Writing in Research. (3)

SHS 507. Adult Neurogenic Communicative Disorders. (3)

SHS 517. Dysphagia. (3)

SHS 525. Voice Disorders. (3)

SHS 530 / 430. Language Development. (3)

SHS 531. Motor Speech Disorders. (3)

SHS 532. Augmentative Communication. (3)

SHS 533. Assessing Language in Children. (3)

SHS 534. Intervention: Child Language Disorders. (3)

SHS 535. Medical Speech-Language Pathology. (3)

SHS 538. Fluency Disorders. (3)

SHS 539. Topics. (1-3 to a maximum of 6 Δ)

SHS 551. Problems. (1-3 to a maximum of 6 Δ)

SHS 557. Professional Issues in Speech-Language Pathology. (1)

SHS 558. Clinical Internship. (8)

SHS 561. Bilingual Language Acquisition: Clinical Implications. (3)

SHS 599. Master's Thesis. (1-6, no limit Δ)

SHS 606. Research Methods in Communication Sciences and Disorders. (3)

SHS 610. Mentored University Teaching Experience in Communication Sciences and Disorders. (1)

SHS 651. Independent Study in Communication Sciences and Disorders. (1-6 to a maximum of 18 Δ)

SHS 699. Dissertation. (3-12 to a maximum of 99 Δ)


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Office of the Registrar

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