By 2024, the Program in Communication Sciences and Disorders will strengthen and deepen our national recognition as a leader in the education of future Speech-Language Pathologists through the integration of research, clinical training and education in the discipline of Communication Sciences and Disorders by: training clinicians who dedicate themselves to uphold the highest standards of the profession; training clinicians who have a broad understanding of bilingual/multicultural issues within the field of Communication Sciences and Disorders; maintaining a faculty actively engaged in regionally, nationally, and internationally recognized research and scholarship; maintaining a model clinical facility to advance the clinical education of students and well-being of individuals with communication and swallowing disorders; expanding our community outreach efforts and the visibility of our programs and services.
The graduate programs in Communication Sciences and Disorders are dedicated to the advancement of science and art associated with the study of all aspects of human communication, and the prevention and treatment of its disorders across the lifespan. The programs offer advanced education and training in the processes of individual human communication (speech, hearing, language, and literacy), disorders of human communication, and swallowing and remedial procedures for such disorders. Graduates are prepared for positions in a variety of professional settings: educational settings, community speech and language centers, rehabilitation centers, hospital clinics, private practices, state departments of education, health departments, federal agencies, and colleges and universities.
The Masters of Science (MS-CSDR, MS-CSDR-IN, MS-CSDR-DU, MS-CSDR-PF) program in Communication Sciences and Disorders aims to facilitate student development of the academic and clinical knowledge, skills and ethical awareness necessary to practice speech language pathology in increasingly diverse and multicultural societies in local and worldwide communities. Our mission is to educate a scholarly practitioner who is broadly trained across the scope of practice and who is grounded in the research base of our discipline and profession.
This degree program leads to national certification in speech language pathology through the American Speech Language and Hearing Association (ASHA) and to New York State licensure as a Speech Language Pathologist. Additionally students can receive the New York State Education Department Teacher of Speech and Language Disabilities certificate (TSSLD).
The Bilingual/Multicultural Program focus (MS-CSDR-DU) is for TSSLD who wish to develop expertise in working with culturally and linguistically diverse children and adolescents with communication disorders. The bilingual/multicultural program focus satisfies the course work and field placement requirements for the bilingual extension to the New York State Teacher of Students with Speech and Language Disabilities (TSSLD) certificate.
The Doctor of Philosophy (PHD-CSDR) is designed for individuals interested in research and university teaching in areas related to Speech and Language Pathology. The program emphasizes research in basic and applied research. Programs are individually designed and take into account the student’s previous academic work, professional experience, and training goals.
Instruction in the areas of speech and language pathology and audiology includes course work (lectures, seminars, colloquia) and practical training in the Edward D. Mysak Clinic for Communication Disorders. Opportunities for clinical and research experiences also exist in the Aphasia Rehabilitation and Bilingualism Research Lab, Speech Production and Perception Lab, Upper Airway Dysfunction Lab, and Developing Language and Literacy Lab.
Informed by our mission and the Teachers College’s mission and strategic goals, this strategic plan outlines the ways in which the Program in Communication Sciences and Disorders intends to achieve its vision for the future. Although our vision statement extends to 2024, we recognize that strategic planning is an ongoing process whereby both its success and relevance must be assessed regularly to address ever-changing internal and external needs. Accordingly, the Program evaluates, and, when necessary, revises the strategic plan each academic year.
Goal 1 Statement: Promote faculty and students’ engagement in research in Communication Sciences and Disorders. This goal aligns with Teachers College Institutional Goal 1: Engage in research on central issues facing education broadly defined.
Research is central to the mission of Teachers College, our department and program. Enhancing a culture of research is important for furthering the mission of the Program, Department, and College; for maintaining the expertise and leadership of the faculty and for implementing evidence-based practice in Communication Sciences and Disorders.
The Program values faculty who engage actively in basic and applied research and scientific inquiry; serve as a research mentor and/or collaborator; and contribute to the greater research community both within and outside the discipline of Communication Sciences and Disorders. Between 2014 and 2018, there have been 86 peer-reviewed publications (including research articles, scholarly reviews and texts), 11 book chapters, and over 300 peer-reviewed presentations authored or co-authored by 90% of the full-time tenured, tenure-track, lecturer or clinical faculty in the Program. Although this is a significant achievement, the Program recognizes the need to provide continued support for research, particularly for obtaining external research grant funding.
The Program values research as an essential component in preparation of speech-language pathologists. Our students understand foundational and emerging theories and research, apply research findings to practice, and, along with faculty, conduct original research in Communication Sciences and Disorders. The opportunity to participate in research projects with faculty in laboratories and through classroom assignments result in many of our masters and doctoral students presenting at national, state and professional meetings. Many of our students take advantage of the opportunity to work in one of our laboratories and are actively involved in research projects with the faculty member heading the lab. We currently have labs in the following areas: Aphasia Rehabilitation and Bilingualism Research Lab; Speech Production and Perception Lab; Upper Airway Dysfunction Lab; and Developing Language and Literacy Lab; and the Edward D. Mysak Clinic for Communication Disorders.
Faculty and students will continue to engage in research in Communication Sciences and Disorders as evidenced in publications, presentations, and internal and external research grants. Students will demonstrate mastery of research skills and evidence-based practices.
10% increase in presentations and publications of faculty/student research and in funded research. 20% increase in applications for research grants. 100% of graduates demonstrate adequate research knowledge and skills.
Goal 2 Statement: Prepare highly qualified speech-language pathologists. This goal aligns with Teachers College Institutional Goal 2: Educate the current and next generation of leaders in education practice and policy.
There are documented national and regional needs for well-prepared speech-language pathologists. The social and economic changes, particularly changes in demographics, raise demands for specific kinds of learning outcomes (i.e., bilingual/multicultural speech-language pathologists). The professional environment (including professional standards, federal and state regulations, licensing and certification requirements, etc.) is changing rapidly and the Program’s training needs to be flexible enough not only to respond but also to lead these changes. All of these changes require a well-designed model of professional training, which integrates academic coursework and clinical training and ensures that all graduates master the required learning outcomes.
Program curriculum and clinical practice will effectively respond to the changing landscape of professional practice and provide students with a variety of opportunities to learn, practice, and demonstrate their achievement of essential learning outcomes. All students will demonstrate that they meet program expectations prior to graduation. Program graduates will be able to secure positions in the field and demonstrate effective practice.
Curriculum and clinical practice alignment with program learning outcomes and professional standards. 100% of graduates demonstrate mastery of learning outcomes. 95% to 100% of graduates find jobs in the field within a year. 100% of respondents evaluate the Program’s training as relevant and effective.
Goal 3 Statement: Increase the Program’s research, teaching, and service visibility locally, nationally, and internationally. This goal aligns with Teachers College Institutional Goal 3: Increase TC’s impact—locally, nationally, and internationally.
The Program is one of the oldest in the country. Its faculty is recognized locally, nationally, and internationally. The Program produces outstanding clinicians, and it provides services to local, national and international clients. It will continue to provide leadership for the discipline and profession through research, teaching, service, and outreach.
The Program will present a unified profile (research, training, and service) through its website, publications, and other public relations mechanisms. Internal and external audiences will be made aware of the Program’s accomplishments and its vision for the future. This will attract more qualified prospective students and future faculty.
Highly qualified new faculty member; up-to-date and consistent Program profile on website and in print; record of the Program’s research and service activities; prospective students’ and public awareness of the Program’s characteristics, Program’s standing in professional ratings.
Goal 4 Statement: Promote diversity, global engagement and culture of inclusion. This goal aligns with Teachers College Institutional Goal 4: Develop a diverse community with shared mission.
Diversity of students is one of the Program’s strengths. Our student population is diverse with respect to racial/ethnic, linguistic, age, and cultural background. Recent statistics for our program show that of the 131 students currently enrolled in our program, 48 self-identified as racial or ethnic minorities and 11 were international students. This indicates that almost one half (45%) of our current students is a person of color or a non-US nationality. As is consistent with the TC Diversity Statement: Teachers College is an institution that actively attracts, supports and retains diverse students, faculty and staff at all levels, demonstrated through its commitment to social justice, its respectful and vibrant community and its encouragement and support of each individual in the achievement of his or her full potential. Consistent with the non-discrimination policy of the College, students’ progression through and completion of the program is based on academic and clinical performance regardless of their race, color, religion, creed, sex, sexual orientation, national origin, ancestry, age, marital status, citizenship status, veteran status, disability, pregnancy, gender expression or any other criterion specified by federal, state or local laws.
Faculty research interests reflect the Program's emphasis on diversity. Many of our faculty have strong preparation in linguistics and conduct research related to issues in bilingual/multicultural and cross-linguistic speech and language development. The faculty is engaged in research to promote diversity in Communication Sciences and Disorders in local, state, national, and international settings.
There is a growing need for bilingual speech and language pathology service providers in the US, particularly in large metropolitan areas because of the increased immigration from non-English speaking countries. The need for the Program to become more culturally sensitive and knowledgeable about multilingual issues in the preparation of students has grown in response to these factors. Our curriculum and co-curricular activities are infused with a strong emphasis on multicultural and bilingual considerations. Additionally, as the program is located in one of the most multicultural urban areas in the country, our students are provided multiple opportunities to work with clients from a wide variety of cultural and linguistic backgrounds in our on-site clinic, in the NYC DOE school system, and other external clinical sites. The success of our Bilingual SLP Institute and the popularity of the bilingual-multicultural program focus within our Program has brought regional and national recognition to the Program. International experiences in Guatemala, Indonesia, Ghana and Colombia enrich students’ understanding of different cultures and enhance their skills in working with diverse populations.
The program will maintain student, faculty, and supervisory staff diversity. It will continue to focus on bilingualism and multiculturalism in faculty research, program curriculum, and other program activities. All students will continue to be provided opportunities to learn and demonstrate mastery in working with diverse client populations.
Student, faculty, and supervisory staff demographics; evidence of bilingual and multicultural emphases in program offerings; students’ performance on diversity-related learning outcomes; alumni feedback on diversity-related training.