The Best Speech-Language Pathology Schools in the Country

December 21, 2012By: VocoVision

The Best Speech-Language Pathology Schools in the Country

The U.S. News and World Report put out a listing of the highest ranked SLP schools in 2012. Schools are ranked based on indicators of academic excellence, using a weighted scale to identify the importance of each of the 16 considerations. Here are the top schools.

1. The University of Iowa, weighs in at number one. The university offers a combined Speech Pathology & Audiology (PhD/AuD) degree. Iowa City, Iowa consistently ranks as one of the best college towns in the U.S. based on the quality of life, cost of living, and earning potential for graduates.

There are about 9,300 students enrolled in graduate and professional degree programs. Twenty-six of the school’s professional and graduate degree programs rank in the top 25 programs in the country.

Fun fact: The Iowa City area boasts a rare phenomenon. Floods in 1993 and 2008 washed out tons of soil to expose the 375-million-year-old fossilized Devonian ocean floor. Visitors can walk down the Devonian Fossil Gorge and see thousands of ancient fossils.

2. The University of Wisconsin in Madison, Wisconsin offers a graduate program in speech language pathology and audiology with didactic and hands-on experience to prepare students for real-life practice.

Opportunities at UW-Madison include The UW Speech and Hearing Clinic where students provide care to evaluation, treatment, and consultation services under faculty supervision. In addition, there’s a robust research program and an outreach service where students provide consultation and services to families and organizations at no cost.

Fun fact: According to, the most popular tourist attraction in Madison is the State Capitol building. Its Roman Renaissance-style architecture includes the only granite dome in the U.S. and is constructed with over 40 types of stone, shipped in from all over the world.

3. The University of Washington in Seattle, Washington offers a four-year Doctor of Audiology program, including general core courses with the opportunity to specialize in the third year of the program and full-time placement in a working environment in the fourth year.

Students get hands-on experience at school-operated UW Speech and Hearing Clinic, serving those affected with communication disorders in the Seattle community.

Fun fact: There are so many things to do in Seattle that the list could go on for days, but here’s something you probably didn’t know: While in Seattle, you can visit the grave of Jimi Hendrix in Renton’s Greenwood Cemetery.

3. The list isn’t exactly linear, and Vanderbilt University shares the same score with UW. Located in Nashville, Tennessee, Vanderbilt U’s Department of Hearing and Speech Sciences offers a full range of academic coursework and clinical practice, including a Master of Science in Speech-Language Pathology (M.S.-SLP), Master in Education of the Deaf (M.D.E.) , and Doctor of Audiology ( Au.D.). Students can also take it a step further to a Ph.D. in audiology, speech-language pathology, and hearing or speech science.

Fun fact: Nashville is all about the music, but students can delve into American history as well. Visitors can tour The Hermitage, a magnificent mansion that was home to President Andrew Jackson.

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