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    Harding University
  Sep 21, 2021
2010-2011 Graduate and Professional Catalog 
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2010-2011 Graduate and Professional Catalog [Archived Catalog]

College of Communication

Description of Program   - List of Courses 

Speech-Language Pathology Program 

Program Description

The Speech-Language Pathology Program is part of the College of Communication and offers a Master of Science in Speech-Language Pathology (M.S.) degree. The curriculum is an intensive five-semester program of coursework comprising 59 semester hours for students with an undergraduate background in comunication sciences and disorders.  Students without this background may apply, but will be expected to complete leveling courses.

The focus for the entire scope of practice is delineated by the Council for Academic Accreditation in Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology (CAA) of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA), 2200 Research Boulevard # 310, Rockville, Maryland 20850 (telephone 800-498-2071 or 301-296-5700). Candidacy is a “pre-accreditation” status with the CAA, awarded to developing or emerging programs for a maximum period of five years.

Essential functions, as distinguished from academic standards, refer to those cognitive, physical, and behavioral abilities that are necessary for satisfactory completion of all aspects of the curriculum, as well as the development of professional attributes required by the faculty of all students at graduation. The essential functions required by the curriculum are in the following areas: motor, sensory, communication, intellectual/cognitive (conceptual, integrative, and quantitative abilities for problem solving and diagnosis), behavioral/emotional aspects of professional practice for speech-language pathologists.

Upon completion of this program, a student will be eligible to apply for membership in the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association and sit for the national certifying exam (PRAXIS II) administered by the Educational Testing Service.

Administrative offices for this program are located in the Reynolds Building of Harding University, located on Burks Boulevard and directly adjacent to the main campus. Clinical facilities and classes are currently located in the Reynolds Building. For more information call 501-279-4648 or email

The Speech-Language Pathology Student Handbook contains a comprehensive description of all policies and procedures that apply to students.


         Rebecca O. Weaver, Ph.D., CCC-SLP*

Department Chair:
          Daniel C. Tullos, Ph.D., CCC-SLP*

          Rebecca O. Weaver, Ph.D., CCC-SLP*

          Amy Baker, M.S, CCC-SLP*
          Tim Chance, M.S., CCC-SLP*
          Jennifer M. Fisher, M.S., CCC-SLP*
          Melanie M. Lowry, M.S., CCC-SLP*
          Sara J. Shock, M.S., CCC-SLP*
          Jan Traughber, M.S., CCC-SLP*

* Designates professional licensure by the state of Arkansas

Mission of the Speech-Language Pathology Program

The educational mission of the Speech-Language Pathology Program at Harding University is to prepare highly competent speech-language pathologists in a rigorous academic curriculum with an emphasis on Christian living. The program is designed to reflect the university goal of integrating faith, learning and living in order for the students to function within professional and global communities.


The master’s program (M.S.) in speech-language pathology at Harding University is a Candidate for Accreditation by the Council on Academic Accreditation in Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology (CAA) of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA) 2200 Research Boulevard # 310, Rockville, MD 20850, (telephone 800-498-2071 or 301-296-5700). This is a “pre-accreditation” status with the CAA, awarded to developing or emerging programs for a maximum period of five years.

Admission Requirements

All applicants must:

  1. Possess a bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited institution in the United States prior to matriculation into the program.
  2. Meet all general requirements for admission and agree to abide by all policies and procedures for graduate programs at Harding University.
  3. Have an academic record of performance at the undergraduate level that is predictive of academic success and professional achievement as a speech-language pathologist. The minimum total undergraduate GPA should be 3.0 on a 4-point scale. Written appeals of this requirement must be made to the program director.
  4. Have a combined minimum GRE score of 900.
  5. Submit three letters of recommendation.
  6. Submit a written statement of professional goals.

Prerequisite Coursework

Students entering this graduate program who do not have a Bachelor of Arts degree in Communication Sciences and Disorders must successfully complete the following leveling courses or their equivalents before they can enter into the Master of Sceince in Speech-Language Pathology Program: 

CSD 215 Normal Speech and Language Development
CSD 290 Phonetics
CSD 400 Anatomy and Physiology of Speech and Language
CSD 402 Audiology

The student must take leveling courses from Harding University or any ASHA accredited university speech pathology program that offers equivalent content. Completion of leveling courses at Harding University as a post-baccalaureate student does not guarantee automatic acceptance into the speech-language pathology master’s program.

Application Procedure

The deadline for applications is March 1 of the spring prior to the fall semester in which the student wants to be enrolled. New students may begin this program only in the fall semester of any given school year.

An application form is available at and must be downloaded and submitted on time with the $40 application fee. Once your completed application is received it will be reviewed, and you will be notified as to whether you have been accepted.

Other Program Requirements

Technical Standards

In addition to the academic requirements for admission, applicants for the Master of Science in Speech-Language Pathology must possess and be able to demonstrate the skills, attributes, and qualities set forth below, without unreasonable dependence on technology or intermediaries. The following Essential Functions are consistent with the American Speech-Language and Hearing Association clinical skill performance guidelines. All essential functions are introduced and coached within CSD/SLP coursework and practicum. If you are uncertain about your abilities to meet these technical standards, please consult the CSD Department Chair to discuss your individual situation.

Physical health: The student must:

  1. Possess the physical health and stamina needed to carry out the SLP Program.
  2. Must be able to continuously sit/stand for several hours.
  3. Participate in professional responsibilities/activities for up to four-hour blocks of time with one or two breaks.
  4. Move independently to, from, and in the work setting.
  5. Provide for one’s own personal hygiene.
  6. Manipulate screening/diagnostic materials, including completion of screening/evaluation protocols.
  7. Effectively implement necessary treatment plan appropriate for client, including fire, choking, etc., and in application of universal precautions.
  8. Visually monitor client responses and materials.
  9. Make accurate judgments about speech and/or acoustic signals.

Intellectual skills: The student must:

  1. Demonstrate the mental capacity to learn and assimilate professional information, including the ability to read and comprehend professional literature and reports.
  2. Solve clinical problems through critical analysis.
  3. Seek relevant case information, synthesize, and apply concepts and information from various sources and disciplines.
  4. Write discipline-specific papers and clinical reports in English.
  5. Speak standard American English intelligibly, including the ability to model English phonemes.
  6. Analyze, synthesize, and interpret ideas and concepts in academic and diagnostic/treatment settings.
  7. Maintain attention and concentration for sufficient time to complete clinical activities for up to four-hour blocks of time with one or two breaks.
  8. Schedule and prioritize activities, and provide documentation in a timely manner.
  9. Comply with administrative, legal, and regulatory policies.

Motor skills: The student must:

  1. Have sufficient use of motor skills to carry out all necessary clinical procedures, both those involved in learning the fundamental sciences and those required in the clinical environment.
  2. Participate in relevant educational exercises and to extract information from written sources.
  3. Provide therapeutic services to patients of all ages and both genders in all clinical situations.
  4. Use a computer keyboard to operate clinical and laboratory equipment.
  5. Transport themselves to all clinical and academic placements.

Communication: The student must:

  1. Have sufficient use of speech, hearing and vision, and the English language to communicate effectively with patients, faculty, staff, peers, and other health care professionals in both oral and written form, e.g. therapy plans, progress notes, diagnostic reports, telecommunications.
  2. Communicate in a succinct yet comprehensive manner and in settings which time available may be limited.
  3. Assess and effectively communicate all relevant information including the significance of non-verbal responses.
  4. Assess incoming information to allow for appropriate, well-focused follow-up inquiry.
  5. Listen responsively and empathetically to establish rapport in a way that promotes openness on issues of concern and sensitivity to potential cultural differences.
  6. Express his or her ideas and feelings clearly and demonstrate a willingness and ability to give and receive feedback.

Sensory abilities: The student must:

  1. Have the ability to master information presented in course work in the form of lectures, written materials, and projected images.
  2. Acquire the information presented through demonstrations and experiences in the clinical training portion of the program.
  3. Observe a patient accurately, at a distance and close at hand, and observe and appreciate non-verbal communication and manual signs when performing clinical assessments and treatment activities.
  4. Take a case history and perform a visual examination of various oral and cranio-facial structures (i.e. ear, throat, oral cavity, skull, etc.).
  5. Perform all required examination and treatment protocols using instruments and tools necessary for accurate, efficient, and timely completion of such activities.

Behavior qualities: The student must:

  1. Possess emotional health sufficient to carry out the tasks above, must have good judgment, and must behave in a professional, reliable, mature, and responsible manner.
  2. Manage the use of time and be able to systematize actions in order to complete professional and technical tasks with realistic constraints.
  3. Adapt, possessing sufficient flexibility to function in new and stressful environments.
  4. Evaluate her/his own performance, be forthright about errors, accept constructive criticism, and look for ways to improve academic and clinical performance.
  5. Show respect for individuals of different age, ethnic background, religion, and/or sexual orientation.
  6. Exhibit professional behavior by conforming to appropriate standards of dress, appearance, language and public behavior.
  7. Uphold the Code of Ethics of the American-Speech-Language-Hearing Association and the Code of Academic Conduct of Harding University.

Each student must continue to meet all of the Technical Standards set forth above. A student may be denied permission to continue in the Master of Science in the Speech-Language Pathology Program at Harding University should the student fail at any time to demonstrate all of the required Technical Standards.

SLP Professional Standards Statement

In addition to Knowledge and Skills Acquisition (KASA) Standards required by ASHA for application for the Certificate of Clinical Competence (CCC), the Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders at Harding University requires graduate students in Speech-Language Pathology to adhere to the SLP Professional Standards Statement. KASA standards and the HU-Speech-Language-Hearing Clinic (HU-SLHC) Professional Standards reflect competencies needed by entry-level professionals and, therefore, demonstration of compliance is necessary throughout the program of study. In addition, compliance is necessary to achieve success in the workplace, to meet the expectations of employers, and to competently practice the profession. Accordingly, the standards require that students comply with the policies and procedures outlined in the Harding University graduate student catalog and the CSD graduate student handbook.

Ethical Standards

The overall objective of the graduate program in Speech-Language Pathology is to prepare professionals to be knowledgeable, clinically skillful, and capable of applying that knowledge and those skills to diverse clinical settings and situations in a cooperative, compassionate, and ethical manner as described in the ASHA Code of Ethics which is outlined in the CSD student handbook.

Health Requirements

Campus Health Care/Immunizations

The Health Services Center provides free health services and resources for enrolled students. Student Health Services, located at 605 E. Center St., is a walk-in clinic with no appointments necessary. Symptomatic treatment is provided for minor illnesses such as colds, headache, sinus congestion, upset stomach, aches, sprains, first aid for accidental injury, blood pressure screening, and allergy injections with physician permission. Students are assisted with referrals and appointments with local health professionals and agencies. Transportation may be provided if necessary. Office hours are 7:30 a.m. to 4:15 p.m. weekdays through fall and spring. Hours for summer sessions are 7:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. When the clinic is closed, assistance may be provided through residence life coordinators or Harding Public Safety. In the event of a serious illness or accident when the clinic is closed, the student should report to the nearest urgent care facility or emergency room for immediate treatment.

While residing in Searcy, students should provide information from their insurance for the appropriate procedure for out of area visits to a physician and for prescription costs. Also, it is strongly recommended that students identify with a local physician for local medical assistance or in case of an emergency.

Health insurance is available for purchase the first 30 days of each semester to eligible students. The plan covers hospitalization, surgical fees, and medical care as provided in the policy. The forms are available in Human Resources, located in the Ezell basement, room 130.

The University does not assume financial responsibility for any professional services that require a physician or any medical, surgical, or emergency services or hospitalization. Students are financially responsible for the costs of his/her services.

The contact information for the Health Services Center is HU Box 12271, Searcy, AR 72149-2271, 501-279-4346 (phone), 501-279-4577 (fax).

All students are required to complete a medical certificate form to be turned in with proof of required immunizations prior to enrollment. Incomplete or inaccurate information may result in student registration being delayed or blocked.

Off-campus placement sites may have additional medical requirements (such as the Hepatitis B series). It is the student’s responsibility to complete such requirements before beginning practicum.

Computer Requirements

Graduate students are required to have their own laptop computer and printer (or consistent access to a reliable computer and printer) upon entry into the program. The minimum requirements will include word processing and email access, ability to manage and manipulate graphics from the Internet, standard font packages including IPA, clear/neat printer with black ink and other standard operating hardware and software.

Liability Requirements

Professional liability insurance is required of all students enrolled in off-campus speech-language pathology clinical practicum sites. The insurance policy must cover the duration of the placement, beginning on or before the first day of the placement and extending through the final day of the placement.

Travel Requirements

Clinical practicum experiences throughout the graduate training are offered at off-campus sites. Students must provide their own transportation to practicum sites and classroom activities. It is therefore required that all CSD/SLP students have a means of transportation. This includes a valid driver’s license and current auto liability insurance if transportation is to be provided through a personal vehicle.

Background Check Requirements

The Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders does not require a background check or drug screening as part of the application process. Admission into the CSD/SLP program does not guarantee eligibility for licensure as a speech-language pathologist in any state as state regulations may require a criminal record search to verify suitability for licensure. Licensure is not required to work as a speech-language pathology student clinician because the supervising professional will be licensed and certified and any patients are the patients of the clinical supervisor. Many clinical practicum sites will require a criminal background check and drug screening procedure for participation in the provision of clinical services. As a part of the initial student meeting of the CSD Department (CSD Boot Camp), fingerprinting, background checks as well as basic T.B. tests will be conducted. The Chair of the Communication Sciences and Disorders Department will notify students of any such requirements well in advance of the beginning of the clinical practicum experience. Any required drug screening must be performed at the student’s expense and the results reported directly to the clinical site and not to Harding University faculty or staff. Determination of student fitness for participation at a clinical site requiring such checks will be at the sole discretion of the clinical site.

Off-Campus Clinical Practicum Requirements

Students are required to complete a total of 400 supervised clinical practicum hours for completion of the graduate degree requirements. Specific requirements are specified in CFCC Standard IV-C as outlined in the CSD/SLP student handbook.

The specific requirements for the graduate degree are currently being developed. Contacts have been made to arrange clinical practicum experiences in at least one of several international clinical practicum locations including Namwianga Mission, Kolomo, Zambia.

Transfer, International and Non-Degree Seeking Applicants

Transfer students: A transfer student is any person who has ever been enrolled in a CSD graduate program at another college or university. The number of transfer students accepted into the Harding program is extremely limited. An individual who wishes to transfer into the CSD/SLP degree program from a Council for Academic Accreditation (CAA) accredited graduate program must comply with the normal application procedures. In addition, the department chair must receive a letter from the department chair at the other school granting approval of the transfer to Harding and stating that the student is in good standing and eligible to continue or return.

Transfer students must satisfy Harding’s prerequisite course requirements and meet current admission standards. When the required materials are received, the department chair will evaluate the individual’s application to transfer. If qualified by current admission standards, the applicant must meet personally with the department chair. After the interview, the chair will make a recommendation regarding admission to the vice president for academic affairs for final action. The number of transfer students accepted will depend upon space availability. The chair will handle all correspondence.

Due to differences in curricula of various graduate programs, some or all credit may not transfer at the same academic level. Equivalency will be determined on a case-by-case basis. No more than 6 hours of graduate credit may be accepted for degree requirement fulfillment. Only grades of “B” or higher may transfer.

International Students: An applicant who is not a citizen of the United States must follow the normal admissions procedure. This includes completing all prerequisite course requirements. If course work has been earned in a foreign country, several steps to proceed are required. In order for the CSD Department to determine whether the courses taken in a foreign country can be transferred for credit, foreign transcripts must be reviewed/evaluated by both the Harding University Registrar’s Office and an international academic credential review service. All fees for the international academic credential review are the responsibility of the applicant. Transfer credit must be identified as courses equivalent to those required for advancement. In order to receive a transcript including the evaluation of transfer credit, the international student must be enrolled at an undergraduate American institution. Until this procedure has been accomplished, an application for admission cannot be accepted. Also: Please note the university guidelines for international students.

Scholarships and Financial Aid

Financial aid is available to most Harding students in the form of scholarships, loans, work-study programs, veterans programs and vocational rehabilitation programs. The Office of Student Financial Services administers these funds wholly or in part. Requests for information and assistance should be directed to Harding University, Box 12282, Searcy, AR 72149-001; telephone 501-279-4257 or 800-477-3243; or email

The Speech-Language Pathology program offers three Graduate Assistantships to incoming graduate students who qualify. The qualifications for the assistantships require maintenance of a 3.0 GPA as well as a 20-hour workweek commitment within the department. The assistantships are awarded for five semesters to incoming students based on undergraduate academic achievement.


For a full program description, click here 


For a list of all courses in this program, click here.