speech_language_pathology_badge-01A speech language pathologist is a professional who diagnoses and treats communication problems in individuals of all ages.  Due to the complex nature of their job, a speech language pathologist needs to have an advanced degree with highly specialized coursework.  Fortunately, continuing education in Speech Language Pathology can now be done online! Like many programs with a practical hands-on methodology of implementation, these programs include clinical practicum hours in addition to coursework. Most states require a range between 350-400 hours for preparation in this field of study. Communication Sciences and Disorders are specialized varied fields that have traditionally taken place on campus in cohorts. The online speech pathology programs listed make accommodations to this style of learning by creating online cohorts and crossover professors who teach both on campus and online. Most speech pathology programs require the learner to have done a minor in communication sciences and disorders. If not, prerequisite coursework will be required. For students believing or knowing they need to take some prerequisites, check out our listing of three online post-baccalaureate speech language pathology programs below this ranking.


  • Flexibility (1/3): the number of flexibility-enhancing features of the speech language pathology program, including part time and full-time cohorts, accelerated courses, asynchronous and synchronous coursework, and life and work experience credits.
  • Affordability (1/3): the estimated out-of-state per credit hour tuition.
  • Academic Support Services (1/3): the extent to which students are supported as in a traditional brick-and-mortar program, as well as support for practicums/internships.

1. Western Kentucky University

Online Master of Science in Speech Language Pathology


WKU_Tall_2cWestern Kentucky University (WKU) is a public university located in Bowling Green, Kentucky with satellite campuses in Glasgow, Elizabethtown-Fort Knox, and Owensboro. WKU is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools and offers bachelor’s, master’s, certificate, and doctoral programs to over 16,000 students. WKU’s forensics program is consistently ranked as one of the top forensics teams according to the National Forensic Association. WKU also has the largest master’s degree program in folklore housed in the Department of Folk Studies and Anthropology with a focus in historic preservation. Other programs of note include the Journalism and Broadcasting program hailing 13 Pulitzer Prizes, education, engineering and business. WKU offers over 170 undergraduate programs and 125 graduate programs as well as over 1,000 distance learning programs.

The Master of Science in Speech Language Pathology at Western Kentucky University offers both full-time and part-time paths to your online master’s degree. This online masters SLP program requires clinical externship hours for completion. Externships cannot be completed in California. This program is 57-63 credit hours that include:

  • core material
  • clinical hours
  • elective hours

Upon completion of the speech therapist online degree program, students are eligible to apply for certification in audiology or speech and language pathology. Core course works includes:

  • early intervention in speech language pathology
  • motor speech disorders
  • voice disorders
  • neurology for speech and language
  • cognitive linguistic disorders
  • audio rehab

Programming is comprehensive and flexible.

Average Graduate Student Tuition Rate: $12,140/year 

2. East Carolina University

Master of Science in Communication Sciences and Disorders


east_carolina_universityEast Carolina University (ECU) is a public doctoral/research university located in Greenville, North Carolina. ECU is a sea grant university and is the third-largest university in North Carolina. ECU has been accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission. The Health Sciences campus includes the:

  • Brody School of Medicine
  • College of Allied Health Sciences
  • College of Nursing
  • School of Dental Medicine

East Carolina University offers a Master’s in Science in Communication Sciences and Disorders. ECU offers two program tracks, a non-clinical track and track in speech language pathology.  The non-clinical track program is an online three-year program that mirrors the on-campus programming in terms of admittance requirements and training procedures. Admission is extremely competitive and only 10-12 distance learning students are accepted each year.  The typical student to faculty ratio at ECU is 18:1.

The ECU speech pathology masters program is a full-time two-year program.  Applications are accepted August 1st through January 15th.  The ECU SLP masters is available face to face at the Greenville campus.

Future speech language pathologists must complete seven undergraduate prerequisite courses or have an undergraduate degree in communication sciences and disorders.  Students must live at most 75 miles away from Greenville, NC.  The curriculum includes 54-60 credit hours of online course work as well as a thesis that fulfills the research portion of the degree. The core course material includes:

  • Language Disorders
  • Language and Learning Disabilities
  • Research design in speech and hearing
  • Fluency disorders
  • Articulation seminar
  • motor speech disorders
  • Brain Language
  • Aphasia
  • Professional issues in speech and language pathology

Average Graduate Student Tuition Rate: $4,749/year in-state and $17,898/year out-of-state

3. University of Wisconsin – Eau Claire

Master of Science in Communication Sciences and Disorders


university of wisconsin eau claire
The University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire (Eau Claire) is a public liberal arts university located in Eau Claire, Wisconsin. Eau Claire offers bachelor’s, master’s, specialist in education and a doctor of nursing degree. The Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education classify it as a post baccalaureate comprehensive institution. Eau Claire offers 80 undergraduate concentrations and 14 graduate concentrations. Eau Claire enrolls over 9,000 undergraduate and 700 graduate students and has been accredited by the North Central Association of College and Schools since 1950.  Eau Claire’s campus is part of a 230-acre park with a river, and stream where students can learn hands-on how to maintain the life of these systems. Eau Claire features sustainable green methods to promote 30 percent lower energy use than currents codes.

The University of Wisconsin- Eau Claire offers a Master’s in Communication Science and Disorders (CSD). Like many of these types of speech pathology online master’s programs, securing the correct prerequisite course material is the first step to entry. Eau Claire requires 30 credit hours of CSD approved course work before the beginning of this program. This is common for many communication science master’s degrees. This program is fully accredited by the Council on American Accreditation in Speech and Language Pathology. Eau Claire also requires a couple weeks of on-campus residency periods. The Master’s in Communication Science Disorders will take three years to complete.

Average Graduate Student Tuition Rate: $8,027/year in-state and $18,061/year out-of-state

4. Idaho State University

Online Master of Science in Speech Language Pathology


idaho_state_universityIdaho State University (ISU) is located in Pocatello, Idaho with satellite campuses in Meridian, Idaho Falls, and Twin Falls. The student body at ISU represents 42 states and 59 countries. Idaho State is a Carnegie classified doctoral research and teaching institute. ISU is the state’s leading institution for health professionals. Research programs of note include:

  • energy
  • health professions
  • nuclear research
  • teaching
  • humanities
  • engineering
  • performing and visual arts
  • technology
  • biological sciences
  • pharmacy
  • business

ISU has a student to faculty ration of 13:1 and offers 250 programs for an associate’s, bachelor’s, master’s or doctoral degree. ISU is accredited by the Northwest Commission of Colleges and Universities. Some programs of note include programming in psychology, social work, music and theater.

Idaho State University offers an online Master of Science in Speech Language Pathology. The program offers a 38-credit hour prerequisite program for anyone who did not obtain an undergraduate degree in Communication Science. Prerequisite post baccalaureate programs are common requirements for a Master’s in Communication Science. Idaho State accepts students from most states for participation in their online program.

This 36-month (three year) speech pathology program requires 2 on-campus visits for clinical practicum. These take place over 2 summers. The curriculum includes:

  • early language development and disorders
  • neuropathologies of speech
  • craniofacial anomalies
  • voice disorders

Average Graduate Student Tuition Rate: $8,380/year in-state and $25,834/year out-of-state

5. New York University Steinhardt

Online Master’s Program in Speech Language Pathology


new_york_universityNew York University (NYU) was founded in 1831 and is non-profit private, nonsectarian research university based in New York City.  NYU offers over 230 areas of study and nearly 3,000 courses in three cities across the world including:

  • New York City
  • Abu Dhabi
  • Shanghai

NYU sends more students to study abroad than any other school in America. Undergraduate enrollment represents 49 states, and 91 countries. Other programs of note include clinical psychology and behavioral neuroscience. The student to faculty ratio at NYU is 8:1. NYU is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.

New York University offers a Master of Science in Speech Language Pathology. The NYU speech pathology masters program is a comprehensive degree that addresses disordered speech, language, and hearing as well as swallowing processes for both children and adults. NYU offers the flexibility of completing the 48-credit hour program either part-time or full-time. As with many programs, fundamental and relevant foundational courses may be required prior to admission. In addition to course work, each online student is required to participate in five varied practicum experiences.

NYU online masters speech pathology graduates leave with the support needed for a successful speech pathologist career.  At the completion of this program, aspiring speech language pathologists can:

  • understand communication and swallowing disorders
  • apply principles of assessment and intervention
  • obtain certification and apply for licensure

Average Graduate Student Tuition Rate: $35,982/year 

6. University of Northern Colorado

Master of Arts in Speech Language Pathology Online Program


university_of_northern_coloradoThe University of Northern Colorado (UNC) is a public baccalaureate and graduate research university. The university has approximately 12,000 students and is located in Greenly, Colorado. UNC has satellite campuses in Loveland, Denver, and Colorado Springs. UNC enrolls over 10,000 students. Popular courses of study include early childhood development, biology and exercise science amongst others. UNC is well known for its Fine Arts programming. The University orchestra has been named the top University orchestra in the United States, the school of theater and arts was named a Colorado program of excellence.  In addition, UNC has also received a community engagement classification from the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching.

The University of Northern Colorado offers a Master of Arts in Speech Language Pathology. The program is three years and is accredited by the CAA and ASHA. The program promotes hands-on learning through practicum. Students will learn to collect and analyze data and conduct research. Students without a background in Speech Language Pathology or a related field must complete core prerequisite course materials. Students must go on-campus for two weeks in the summer and complete a 12-week full-time internship during the final summer semester.

Average Graduate Student Tuition Rate: $11,192/year in-state and $20,205/year out-of-state

7. James Madison University

Online Speech Language Pathology Master’s Program 


James Madison University (James Madison) is a public coeducational research university located in Harrisonburg, Virginia. James Madison is considered to be “more selective” according to the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. The student body at James Madison represents 50 states and 89 foreign countries. Currently James Madison offers 115 degree programs on the bachelor’s, master’s, educational specialists, and doctoral levels to over 22,000 students. The student to faculty ratio is 16:1. Harrisonburg is located in the Shenandoah Valley and is home to many great trails, canoeing, biking and swimming opportunities.

James Madison University offers a Master’s Degree in Speech Language Pathology. Applications for admissions are accepted every other year. The Master’s Degree in Speech Language Pathology requires prerequisite course material as well as a two-day in person orientation. Participants in this program must also complete a four-to-six-week placement on JUM’s Harrisonburg campus. Clinical experience requirements typically occupy three to four days per week of commitment. The program of study includes:

  • an introduction to research
  • physiological and acoustic phonetics
  • advanced children’s language disorders
  • aging and communication
  • clinical preparation
  • processes and disorders of speech fluency

Completion of this course takes 55 credit hours.  Students can earn their degree in three years.

Average Graduate Student Tuition Rate: $11,184/year in-state and $27,888/year out-of-state

8. California State University – Northridge

Master of Science in Communicative Disorders


California State University Northridge (CSUN) is a public university located in the Northridge neighborhood of Los Angeles, California in the San Fernando Valley. CSUN enrolls over 40,000 people and is one of the largest comprehensive schools in California. CSUN is accredited by the Commission for Senior Colleges and Universities of the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC). CSUN offers a joint degree in partnership with Southwestern Law School for students who want to complete a B.A./J.D. degree in seven years. Other notable fields of study include accounting, music (world champion chorus), and computer science. CSUN is located near Hollywood and Is featured in several films and television series. Notably, 100 Citizens is a free exercise program founded by CSUN faculty and students offering free exercise programming to anyone 18 and over and has since expanded to three parks.

Cal State Northridge speech pathology online program takes three years to complete.  This program is offered 100% online and all practicum hours can be completed in student’s own community. The MS in Communicative Disorders is taught in the cohort format to foster networking with fellow participants. Some examples of the types of courses to expect are as follows:

  • interviewing and counseling in communicative disorders
  • language disorders
  • adult and pediatric swallowing and feeding disorders
  • advanced diagnostics in speech and language pathology
  • pediatrics
  • clinical practice

CSUN offers a 2-year comprehensive prerequisite program for those who did not obtain a bachelor’s degree in the field of communication disorders. This program warrants automatic entry into the master’s programming.

Average Graduate Student Tuition Rate: $7,176/year in-state and $16,680/year out-of-state

The Top 3 Post-Bach Programs in Speech Language Pathology

Online masters SLP programs have some of the most rigorous admissions standards of graduate level degrees that we’ve seen here at Early Childhood Education Degrees. Many students will need a few courses to be ready for online study in Speech Pathology. For students who need more than a few prerequisites, there are convenient Post-Bach programs meant to prepare future speech language pathologists for entry into SLP graduate programs. Check out our top three online programs below!

1. Longwood University

Speech Language Pathology Prerequisite Courses



Longwood University is a four-year liberal arts university located in Farmville, Virginia. Both Robert E. Lee and General Ulysses S. Grant have marched past Longwood University’s campus just before the end of the Civil War. Longwood University offers more than 100 majors and minors. Longwood University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. Notable programming at Longwood University consists of sociology with family studies and the James W. Jordan Archaeological Field School. Longwood University offers associate’s, bachelor’s and master’s degree programs.

Longwood University offers the course material prerequisite requirements to enter a Master’s in Communication Disorders. This post baccalaureate program is offered completely online. Those who have a bachelor’s degree or are currently working toward a bachelor’s degree with intent to continue into the field of speech and language pathology are eligible candidates for this program. Course content includes an introduction to communication disorders which includes information about the various speech, language, hearing and swallowing disorders.  Other course content in the Longwood University speech pathology online program includes:

  • language development
  • morphology and syntax
  • phonetics, anatomy and physiology of speech and hearing mechanisms
  • speech science

Average Graduate Student Tuition Rate: $6,480/year in-state and $17,910/year out-of-state

2. University of Vermont

Post-Baccalaureate Speech Language Pathology Certificates


The University of Vermont (UVM) is a public research university and is located in the city of Burlington, Vermont. UVM is a land-grant facility. UVM offers bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral programs through their College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, College of Medicine, the Rubenstein School of Environment and Natural Resources amongst others. UVM is fully accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges and offers 100 undergraduate majors 50 master’s degrees, post baccalaureate certificates, and 24 doctoral programs. UVM also offers 700 study abroad options. UVM is the first university to African Americans and women to Phi Betta Kappa honor society. UVM is located on Lake Champlain.

The University of Vermont offers a Pre-Master’s track-certificate course in Speech Language Pathology. The certificate consists of six courses for completion and eventual entry into the UVM Master’s in Communication Sciences and Disorders. The program is 19 credit hours. The coursework entails:

  • Introduction to Phonetics
  • Linguistics for Clinicians
  • Development of Spoken Language
  • Speech & Hearing Science
  • Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Elements of Statistics

Average Graduate Student Tuition Rate: $12,294/year in-state and $30,960/year out-of-state

3. Pacific University Oregon

Communication Sciences and Disorders Post-Baccalaureate Program


Pacific University Oregon (Pacific University) is located in Forest Grove, Oregon with three other campuses in Eugene, Hillsboro, and Woodburn. Pacific University is a small private non-profit coeducational liberal arts school and enrolls 3,700 students. Pacific University has been accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities. Pacific University offers degrees in dental hygiene, anthropology, environmental biology, physics, music therapy and others. The graduate programming includes teaching and occupational therapy

Pacific University Oregon offers a post-baccalaureate program that provides 27 semester hours of the required coursework for entry into their Master of Science in speech language pathology. Online programs are taught by the same faculty as those on campus.  This program is designed to prepare students for advanced study in speech and language pathology. Course offerings includes:

  • clinical phonetics
  • speech science
  • audiology and aural rehabilitation
  • professional orientation to communication sciences and disorders
  • neurotanatomy and neurophysiology

Average Graduate Student Tuition Rate: $35,909/year 

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