The demand for speech pathologists and audiologists is growing globally due to increasing instances of age-related health conditions that cause speech or language impairments.
In fact, the U.S. Department of Labor has stated it expects employment in these fields to grow at a pace well ahead of the average for all occupations.
As a result, TCNJ is launching a speech pathology and audiology undergraduate major beginning in the fall of 2018. The four-year program will include rigorous coursework, opportunities for field observations and internships with professionals, a selection of specializations, and classes in the areas required as a prerequisite for application to competitive graduate programs.
“In addition to preparing students for graduate education in audiology and speech-language pathology, this degree can lead to careers in a variety of other fields such as health care, education, science, and public policy,” said Suzanne McCotter, dean of TCNJ’s School of Education.
There are three options for specialization within the program:
- Working with deaf clientele will assist students in understanding the unique circumstances of language and speech development in deaf or hard of hearing children.
- Augmentative communication will give students a background in communication development in children with significant disabilities as well as an introduction to relevant assistive technologies.
- Using language and culture as a lens will provide the student with a knowledge base to enable socially responsive practices that minimize marginalization due to linguistic or cultural differences.
The major is a 10-course sequence of study and students will graduate with a Bachelor of Science degree. While not required to select a specialization, course clusters have been identified for students who wish to utilize elective credits toward a specific focus. Such a focus will give students an opportunity to explore either a specific population with whom they might work or a therapeutic function of the work.