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Academics—Communication Disorders

Welcome to the Communication Disorders program (CDP) at North Carolina Central University (NCCU).  The academic and clinical components of our master’s program address the following sets of requirements:

  1. The University’s School of Graduate Studies minimum requirements for the MS degree;
  2. The CD Program’s academic and clinical requirements;
  3. ASHA’s certification requirements for speech-language pathology;
  4. North Carolina’s state licensure requirements for speech-language pathology;
  5. North Carolina Department of Public Instruction requirements to practice in public schools. 

The CD program requires prerequisite courses in the following areas to address ASHA Certification Standards IV-B and IV-C for speech-language pathology (NCCU course numbers are provided):

  • Anatomy and Physiology (EDSH 5710)
  • Aural Rehabilitation (EDSH 5752)
  • Clinical observation (at least 25 hours with valid supporting documentation; EDU 4810)
  • Introduction to Audiology (EDSH 5751)
  • Phonetics (EDSH 5730)
  • Scientific Bases of Speech or a similar class that combines speech and hearing science (EDU 4760/EDSH 5725)  
  • Speech and Language Development (EDSH 5700)

ASHA Certification Standards also require coursework in the following basic sciences:

  • Biological sciences (courses should emphasize a content area related to human or animal sciences, e.g., biology, human anatomy and physiology, genetics, neuroanatomy, or neurophysiology)
  • Physical sciences (chemistry or physics only)
  • Social sciences (e.g., psychology, sociology, anthropology, or public health)
  • Statistics

Two-Year Track Course Sequence

A student admitted unconditionally to the CD Program who has completed all prerequisite courses (including basic science courses) is expected to graduate in 56 semesters (including a summer) of full-time study and clinical practicum. 

These students typically have an undergraduate degree in communication disorders or an undergraduate degree in a related field but have completed all of the prerequisite coursework in communication disorders.

Three-Year Track Course Sequence

Students who have not completed all of the prerequisite courses can be admitted to the CD program. These individuals have an undergraduate degree in a related field but need to successfully complete all of the required pre-professional courses before beginning graduate coursework and clinical practicum. A student who has not completed each prerequisite course prior to enrollment should expect their timeframe for graduation to be extended by two to three semesters. 

A student without a background will generally follow the course sequence below for his or her first year in the graduate program before beginning required graduate coursework.  With the exception of Aural Rehabilitation, each prerequisite course must be completed before a student can enroll in a clinical practicum. Students with a partial background must consult their advisors to determine the appropriate course sequence.

Typical Course Sequence for Students without a Background (First Year)

Course Number


Credit Hours


EDSH 5710

Anatomy and Physiology


EDSH 5751

Introduction to Audiology


EDSH 5700

Speech and Language Development


*EDGR 5910



Total: 9 (1012) hours


EDSH 5730



EDSH 5752

Aural Rehabilitation


EDSH 5725

Speech Science


Total: 9 (1013) hours

Note: Students should take EDGR 5910 Statistics during this first year if required. EDU 4810 can be taken during the fall or spring semester.

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