Speech Pathology Programs in Illinois with Course Descriptions

There are 15 schools in Illinois that offer speech pathology programs. Read an overview of the ten largest schools offering these programs, including requirements and tuition info, and find out which school is the right one for you.

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Essential Information

There are about 15 schools in Illinois that offer speech-language pathology programs. Speech pathology may also be a concentration in a larger degree program. This article discusses the ten largest schools. Each of the graduate-level programs discussed below is accredited by the Council on Academic Accreditation in Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology (CAA) of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association. Some graduate programs are available in a distance learning format. The speech-language pathologist assistant program is approved by the Department of Financial and Professional Regulation. The bachelor's degree programs discussed in this article are designed to prepare students for graduate-level study in the field.

Speech pathology programs are often hands-on, allowing students to gain practical experience through practicums and internships. Students may also get to conduct research or put together a portfolio. Graduate students may need to complete a thesis, dissertation or comprehensive exam.

Career Requirements

Speech-language pathologists and speech-language pathologist assistants must be licensed by the Department of Financial and Professional Regulation to practice in Illinois. To become a licensed speech-language pathologist, an individual must possess a master's or doctoral degree in the field, have completed at least nine months of supervised work experience and pass an exam. To become a licensed speech-language pathologist assistant, an individual must have completed an approved associate's degree program in the field.


College of DuPage

Located in Glen Ellyn, this college offers an Associate in Applied Science in Speech-Language Pathology Assistant program. This program can be completed on a 2-year or 3-year schedule. Students complete a total of 64 credit hours of study, which includes a practicum and a course focusing on clinical methods and documentation.

  • Program Offered: Associate in Applied Science in Speech-Language Pathology Assistant
  • Tuition & Fees (2012): $4,352 for in-district, $10,336 for in-state and $12,576 for out-of-state students*
  • School Type & Setting: 2-year, public; large suburb

Eastern Illinois University

Situated in Charleston, this university offers a Bachelor of Science in Communication Disorders and Sciences that requires 120 semester hours of study. Classes in this program cover topics like phonetics, phonological development, speech science and language acquisition. Students also complete clinical experiences.

The school also offers a Master of Science in Communication Disorders and Sciences program that is available through a traditional, on-campus format or a distance-learning format. The former takes two years to complete, while the latter takes three years. Students complete a minimum of 46 semester hours of study and have the option to write a thesis. The program's curriculum also includes internships and clinical experiences.

  • Programs Offered: Bachelor of Science in Communication Disorders and Sciences
    Master of Science in Communication Disorders and Sciences
  • Tuition & Fees (2012): $10,930 for in-state and $27,670 for out-of-state students*
  • School Type & Setting: 4-year, public; remote town

Illinois State University

Illinois State University is located in Normal and enrolls about 21,300 students. It offers a Bachelor of Science in Speech Pathology that requires 51 credits of study in the major. Classes in this program cover topics like clinical neurology, augmentative communication and clinical phonetics.

The university also offers Master of Science and Master of Arts in Speech Pathology programs that require five terms of study. Classes focus on subjects such as communication disorders across cultures, bilingual assessment and development of writing. Both programs' curricula also include several practicums and internships and allow students to elect to write a thesis. Regardless of the chosen degree, students also might complete a sequence in bilingual pathology that consists of 16 credit hours of study.

  • Programs Offered: Bachelor of Science in Speech Pathology
    Master of Science or Master of Arts in Speech Pathology
  • Tuition & Fees (2012): $12,726 for in-state and $20,016 for out-of-state students*
  • School Type & Setting: 4-year, public; small city

Northern Illinois University

Northern Illinois University is located in Dekalb and enrolls about 23,000 students. It offers a Bachelor of Science in Communicative Disorders that requires at least 70 credit hours of study in the major. Coursework covers topics like communication behaviors, aural rehabilitation and phonology.

The university also offers a Master of Science in Communicative Disorders with a specialization in speech-language pathology that requires five terms of study. In addition to coursework, students in this 36-credit-hour program complete clinical practicums and can elect to write a thesis.

  • Programs Offered: Bachelor of Science in Communicative Disorders
    Master of Science in Communicative Disorders
  • Tuition & Fees (2012): $13,066 for in-state and $22,554 for out-of-state students*
  • School Type & Setting: 4-year, public; small suburb

Northwestern University

This university is located in Evanston and enrolls approximately 21,000 students. It offers a Bachelor of Science in Human Communication Sciences with a concentration in speech-language pathology. Offered classes include early childhood communication intervention, diagnostic procedures and hearing impairment.

The school also offers a Master of Science in Speech, Language and Learning with a concentration in speech-language pathology. This program requires a minimum of eight quarters of study and includes coursework covering topics like acoustic phonetics, vocal physiology and functional neuroanatomy. The program's curriculum also includes several clinical practicums and requires students to pass a comprehensive exam.

Additionally, Northwestern University offers a Doctor of Philosophy in Communication Sciences and Disorders that prepares students for academic or research careers. Students in the program complete coursework, lab rotations and research, and they must also pass a comprehensive exam and write a dissertation.

  • Programs Offered: Bachelor of Science in Human Communication Sciences with a concentration in speech-language pathology
    Master of Science in Speech, Language and Learning with a concentration in speech-language pathology
    Doctor of Philosophy in Communication Sciences and Disorders
  • Tuition & Fees (2012): $43,779*
  • School Type & Setting: 4-year, private not-for-profit; small city

Saint Xavier University

This university is located in Chicago. It offers a Bachelor of Arts in Speech-Language Pathology. Courses in this program cover topics like phonology, stuttering theories and aural rehabilitation. The program's curriculum also includes a practicum.

The school also offers a Master of Science in Speech-Language Pathology that requires 48 credit hours of study. Students complete coursework and clinical practicums. Classes in the approximately 5-semester-long program include language development disorders, fluency disorders and traumatic brain injury.

  • Programs Offered: Bachelor of Arts in Speech-Language Pathology
    Master of Science in Speech-Language Pathology
  • Tuition & Fees (2012): $28,110*
  • School Type & Setting: 4-year, private not-for-profit; large city

Southern Illinois University at Carbondale

Located in Carbondale, this school enrolls about 19,800 students. It offers a Bachelor of Science in Communication Disorders and Sciences program that requires four years of study. Coursework includes speech science, articulation, language development and diagnostic procedures in communication disorders.

The university also offers a Master of Science in Communication Disorders and Sciences that includes coursework covering topics like phonological acquisition, communication disorders counseling and neurogenic disorders of communication. This program takes three years to complete.

  • Programs Offered: Bachelor of Science in Communication Disorders and Sciences
    Master of Science in Communication Disorders and Sciences
  • Tuition & Fees (2012): $11,528 for in-state and $23,781 for out-of-state students*
  • School Type & Setting: 4-year, public; rural fringe

Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville

This university is located in Edwardsville and enrolls about 14,200 students. It offers a Bachelor of Arts and a Bachelor of Science in Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology. Students in the Bachelor of Arts program complete more humanities, foreign language and performing arts courses, while those in the Bachelor of Science program complete more science-related courses. Coursework includes speech and hearing anatomy and physiology, hearing science and articulation disorders. Students get hands-on experience through the school's Speech-Language-Hearing Center.

The university also offers a Master of Science in Speech-Language Pathology, the curriculum of which includes research experiences, lectures and practicums. Classes in this 2-year program focus on subjects like voice disorders, dysphagia and neurophysiology.

  • Programs Offered: Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science in Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology
    Master of Science in Speech-Language Pathology
  • Tuition & Fees (2012): $9,251 for in-state and $19,673 for out-of-state students*
  • School Type & Setting: 4-year, public; large suburb

University of Illinois at Urbana - Champaign

This university is located in Champaign and enrolls a little over 44,400 students. It offers a Bachelor of Science in Speech and Hearing Science with a concentration in speech-language pathology. Students in the program, which requires 128 credit hours of study, complete at least 17 credit hours in their chosen concentration.

The university also offers a Master of Arts in Speech-Language Pathology that requires two years of study. Courses cover topics like clinical sociolinguistics and neurological bases of speech and language. Students can elect to write a thesis prior to graduation.

  • Programs Offered: Bachelor of Science in Speech and Hearing Science with a concentration in speech-language pathology
    Master of Arts in Speech-Language Pathology
  • Tuition & Fees (2012): $14,522 for in-state and $28,664 for out-of-state students*
  • School Type & Setting: 4-year, public; small city

Western Illinois University

This university is located in Macomb and enrolls approximately 12,500 students. It offers a Bachelor of Science in Communication Sciences and Disorders program that requires a total of 120 credit hours of study. Classes in this program focus on subjects such as sign language, phonetics and speech science.

The university also offers a Master of Science in Communication Sciences and Disorders in Speech-Language Pathology that takes approximately two years to complete. Classes cover topics like child language disorders, language theory and articulation disorders. Students also complete research, a clinical practicum and an internship as well as create a portfolio.

  • Programs Offered: Bachelor of Science in Communication Science and Disorders
    Master of Science in Communication Sciences and Disorders in Speech-Language Pathology
  • Tuition & Fees (2012): $11,182 for in-state and $15,118 for out-of-state students*
  • School Type & Setting: 4-year, public; remote town

School Comparison: At a Glance

School Name School Type & Setting Speech Pathology Programs Offered Undergraduate Tuition & Fees (2012-2013)
College of DuPage 2-year, public; large suburb Associate in Applied Science in Speech-Language Pathology Assistant $4,352 for in-district, $10,336 for in-state and $12,576 for out-of-state students*
Eastern Illinois University 4-year, public; remote town Bachelor of Science in Communication Disorders and Sciences,
Master of Science in Communication Disorders and Sciences
$10,930 for in-state and $27,670 for out-of-state students*
Illinois State University 4-year, public; small city Bachelor of Science in Speech Pathology,
Master of Science or Master of Arts in Speech Pathology
$12,726 for in-state and $20,016 for out-of-state students*
Northern Illinois University 4-year, public; small suburb Bachelor of Science in Communicative Disorders,
Master of Science in Communicative Disorders
$13,066 for in-state and $22,554 for out-of-state students*
Northwestern University 4-year, private not-for-profit; small city Bachelor of Science in Human Communication Sciences with a concentration in speech-language pathology,
Master of Science in Speech, Language and Learning with a concentration in speech-language pathology,
Doctor of Philosophy in Communication Sciences and Disorders
$43,779*
Saint Xavier University 4-year, private not-for-profit; large city Bachelor of Arts in Speech-Language Pathology,
Master of Science in Speech-Language Pathology
$28,110*
Southern Illinois University at Carbondale 4-year, public; rural fringe Bachelor of Science in Communication Disorders and Sciences,
Master of Science in Communication Disorders and Sciences
$11,528 for in-state and $23,781 for out-of-state students*
Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville 4-year, public; large suburb Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science in Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology,
Master of Science in Speech-Language Pathology
$9,251 for in-state and $19,673 for out-of-state students*
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign 4-year, public; small city Bachelor of Science in Speech and Hearing Science with a concentration in speech-language pathology,
Master of Arts in Speech-Language Pathology
$14,522 for in-state and $28,664 for out-of-state students*
Western Illinois University 4-year, public; remote town Bachelor of Science in Communication Science and Disorders,
Master of Science in Communication Sciences and Disorders in Speech-Language Pathology
$11,182 for in-state and $15,118 for out-of-state students*

Source: *College Navigator, National Center for Education Statistics.

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