The UH COMD Master's Program is honored to be a step on the path of our students' journey to becoming speech-language pathologists.
The Master of Arts (M.A.) education program in communication sciences and disorders at the University of Houston is accredited by the Council on Academic Accreditation in Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association, 2200 Research Boulevard, #310, Rockville, MD 20850, 301-296-5700. This program provides academic and clinical training for a career in speech-language pathology.
Admission to the master's program is limited to 30-40 new students each fall. Students learn in a supportive and challenging environment with easy access to faculty and clinical educators. Our graduate students experience a well-balanced educational and training program. The faculty consists of 14 full-time academic and clinical professors and numerous adjunct professors with specialized interest in voice disorders, motor speech disorders, right hemisphere cognitive-communication disorders, adult language disorders, swallowing, child language, literacy, bilingualism, multiculturalism and fluency.
For more information on applying to the master's program in communication sciences and disorders at the University of Houston, please click here.
For more information about the policies and procedures of the master's program in communication sciences and disorders at the University of Houston (including ethical practices, degree requirements, requirements for professional credentialing, complaint procedures, etc.), please visit this link to our current Master's Handbook.
Student Outcome Data
For the past 3 years, virtually all (98%) of the graduates from our program have passed the national examination on their first attempt and 93% of those seeking employment are employed within 9 months of graduation. The 3-year average on-time program completion rate was 91%. Please refer to the detailed information in the tables below.
PRAXIS Examination Results*
|Period||# Taking Exam||# Passing Exam||Pass Rate|
* First attempt at PRAXIS.
Employment/Job Placement Rates
|Period||Employment Rate in Profession|
|# of Graduates||% of Graduates|
|2020/21||35||94% (33 of 35)**|
|2019/20||44||93% (41 of 44)**|
|2018/19||33||91% (30 of 33)**|
** Employed within 9 months of graduation.
Graduation/Program Completion Rates****
|Period||# Completed Program Within Expected Time Frame||# Completed Program Later Than Expected Time Frame||# Not Completing||% Completing Within Expected Time Frame|
**** Completion within the standard time frame: 5 semesters for full-time students and 7 semesters with part-time continuous enrollment.
+ Graduation delayed by one term due to the impact of COVID-19 on practicum availability.
Academic courses cover etiology, prevention, characteristics, diagnosis and treatment of communication disorders (including speech, language, cognition, hearing and swallowing) across the life span.
Students must complete 49 academic credits for the master’s degree (31 credits in required content coursework, 3 credits of elective coursework, 15 credits in clinic assignments).
Full-time students typically complete the program in two years (5-6 semesters). Part-time students typically complete their program in three years (7 semesters). Part-time students take a reduced course load and clinic load during their first two years. Full-time attendance is required their second summer and final two semesters to complete externship placements. Click here to see sample programs of study for full and part time programs.
Part-Time Master's Program
Students who have been accepted into the master's program may opt into the part-time program. In the part-time program, coursework and clinic experiences are spread over 7 semesters. Students graduate at the end of their 3rd spring semester. Please click here for more information on the part-time graduate curriculum. During the last two semesters, students will be assigned to externships. The externships require a 30-40 hour per week commitment.
Due to the sequencing and availability of classes and clinic placements, students who begin part-time cannot accelerate their program to graduate earlier than the end of their 7th semester.
Part-time students must be available to be on-campus for clinic assignments and courses. Although the majority of graduate courses are taught in the evenings, some are offered only during the day. Clinic experiences are scheduled during the work-day.
Admissions criteria and procedures are the same for all students, regardless of whether applicants intend to be full-time or part-time students. Please click here for more information on the graduate admission procedure.
A minimum of five semesters of clinical practica are required. These are completed both at the University Speech-Language-Hearing Clinic: A United Way agency and at a wide variety of clinics, schools and hospitals in the Houston area.
Evidence-Based Practice Reports
All graduate students successfully complete at least two Evidence-Based Practice case studies as part of their clinical education.
The Evidence-Based Practice (EBP) Reports project at the University of Houston Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders is a formative assessment of the student's development into critically thinking independent practitioners of speech-language pathology in a variety of settings. EBP Reports allow students to utilize research, client information and clinical practice in formulating therapeutic recommendations. Students present their findings and recommendations in written and oral formats.
In their last semester, all graduate students who do not complete a master’s thesis must take a comprehensive exam, which serves as a summative assessment. The exam consists of multiple-choice questions regarding a series of complex clinical scenarios. In addition to research and ethical issues, questions probe etiology, characteristics, assessment and treatment of a variety of communication disorders.
Master’s ThesisGraduate students have the option of completing a master’s thesis under the direction of one member of the faculty. Students may draw upon the COMD faculties’ wide range of research interests. Students who are considering a master’s thesis must obtain consent from a faculty member who is willing to act as the thesis committee chair. Students who opt to complete a thesis must register for six thesis credits (typically two 3-credit sections across 2 semesters) and must be registered for thesis credits in the semester their thesis is completed and defended. Students who complete a thesis do not have to take the elective course and will graduate with 3 credit hours more than the number required for the graduate program. They are not required to complete the second Evidence Based Practice Reports (described above), and they are exempt from taking the comprehensive examination.
The UH COMD master's program, like all accredited programs, must provide a range of courses and clinical experiences so that students obtain knowledge and skills that span the “Big 9” disorders identified by the Council on Academic Accreditation in Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (CAA). We understand that some students wish to specialize and obtain more in-depth, focused learning with a particular population or disorder area.
To provide a way to obtain some specialized learning, we offer Specialty Concentrations. A Specialty Concentration is a mentored experience designed individually for each student. Concentrations are optional and require work above and beyond that expected of the UH COMD Graduate program. Interested students will meet with a faculty mentor and develop a contract that includes all required elements and deadlines.
Requirements: The activities, projects, experiences, and expectations of the Specialty Concentrations are individualized and agreed upon by the student and his/her faculty mentor. Students must have a formal educational component to the Specialty Concentration. They also must maintain a grade of B or better in clinic and B- or better in all academic courses. Specialty concentrations should be completed one month before graduation. More detailed information can be found in the Master’s Handbook.
Master's students who have complaints should follow the procedures of the department of communication sciences and disorders complaint policy outlined in the current Master's Handbook and, if needed, the COMD or College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences grievance policies.
Complaints about the program related to the Standards of Accreditation should be made in writing to the Council on Academic Accreditation in Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (CAA).
Procedures for filing a complaint with the CAA can be found at: http://caa.asha.org/?s=complaint