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Communication Disorders

Graduate Program FAQs

1. What do I do if I have a bachelor's degree in another field?

You must have completed the core communication disorders courses that are listed as prerequisites, or their equivalents, before entering the graduate program. The Communication Disorders Department offers an online post-baccalaureate program in foundations of communication disorders, which is designed for students who intend to apply to the graduate program in communication disorders, but have completed a major in a different field. Alternatively you can take the prerequisite courses at another school. See more information about the post-baccalaureate program.


2. If I take these prerequisite courses at New Paltz, does that mean I will be accepted into the New Paltz graduate program?

No. Your application to the graduate program will be considered equally along with all other applicants. There is no particular advantage for graduate admissions at New Paltz in having completed an undergraduate degree or the post-baccalaureate program here.


3. How long will it take me to complete the prerequisite courses?

The minimum duration of the post-baccalaureate program at New Paltz is one year of study if summer session courses are included.


4. When should I apply to the graduate program?

Graduate applications are reviewed each spring for fall admissions. All prerequisite courses must be completed before fall admission. However, at the time of application, prerequisite courses may be in progress and/or planned for summer immediately preceding fall admission. There are no spring admissions.


5. What is the application deadline? When and how will I find out if I have been accepted?

Applications must be submitted to the Office of Graduate & Extended Learning by February 1 using their online system. The online system allows you to check the status of your application 24/7. For the current admissions time line, please visit How to Apply


6. What is the minimum GRE for acceptance? What GPA do I need in my major courses?

There is no set minimum GRE. It is just one factor that is considered along with the rest of the application materials. The major GPA should be higher than the minimum overall GPA of 3.0, but again, there is no set minimum specifically for the GPA in your major. The major GPA is considered in conjunction with the application essay, the letters of recommendation, specific aspects of the transcript, the applicant’s work, volunteer, and/or research experience, etc. To see the GPA and GRE scores of students recently admitted to the program, click on the "Graduate Student Profile" link on the Graduate Program page.

Client at table with grad student clinicians


7. When and how may I apply for assistantships?

New Paltz has a limited number of positions within the department. These are not awarded in advance. Accepted students apply for these positions during orientation.


8. Is the New Paltz graduate program accredited?

The graduate program in communication disorders at New Paltz (speech-language pathology concentration, and speech and language disabilities concentration) is accredited by the Council on Academic Accreditation in Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology (CAA) of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association, 2200 Research Boulevard #310, Rockville, MD 20850, 800-498-2071 or 301-296-5700. Accreditation was first awarded in 1981. Both concentrations are also registered as licensure-qualifying in the State of New York. The speech and language disabilities concentration is registered as leading to a New York State teaching certificate in speech and language disabilities (TSSLD).


9. I have an initial certificate in TSSLD from my undergraduate program. What concentration should I complete?

Students with the initial certificate in TSSLD complete the speech-language pathology concentration. Upon completion of the program, and three years of full-time employment in a school-based setting, the professional certificate in TSSLD is awarded.


10. Is the program difficult?

Both the undergraduate and graduate programs are rigorous, and graduate admissions throughout New York State are competitive. New Paltz graduates have a high pass rate on the national board exam (PRAXIS) and are well regarded by employers in the region.


11. Is the program campus-based or online?

The majority of the courses are offered on campus. Two online courses are presently offered, and additional online and/or “hybrid” offerings are being developed. Required practicum experience is obtained on campus in our Speech, Language, and Hearing Center, and off campus at our regional affiliate sites.


12. How long will it take me to finish the program? Do I have to study in the summer?

Typically, students study full time and complete the speech-language pathology program in two years (four semesters). Most full-time students take an extra semester to complete the speech and language disabilities program. Students are able to take online courses in the summer, and many students use the summer to obtain practicum hours.


13. What are my employment prospects?

From 2009 to 2017, no less than 90% of students who completed the Master's degree at New Paltz found employment in the field of communication disorders. More recent data is available by clicking the "Student Outcome Data" link on the Graduate Program page.

Quick facts from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (https://www.bls.gov/ooh/healthcare/speech-language-pathologists.htm):

2017 median pay: $76,610/yr; $36.83/hr
Entry-level education: Master's degree
Number of jobs, 2016: 145,100
Job outlook, 2016-2026: 18% (much faster than average)
Employment change, 2016-2026: 25,900


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  Speech client at table with grad clinician looking on