Why Choose EIU?
Clinic Open Door
You may not realize it, but autism has probably touched the life of somebody you know. With an incidence of one in every 88 children, it is the most common developmental disorder. Early identification and intensive therapy typically help these children and their families overcome the educational challenges presented by autism, but this has proven an overwhelming task for our public school system to undertake alone.
That's where the EIU Department of Communication Disorders and Sciences and EIU Autism Center come in. Our accomplished faculty and staff provide evaluations and recommendations necessary to help educators best serve the academic needs of individuals with autism spectrum disorders.
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In conjunction with the academic training program, we operate the Speech-Language-Hearing Clinic to provide clinical experiences for students in training. The Clinic provides diagnostic and treatment services for more than 100 clients per semester. Students work with clients from surrounding communities in a 70-80 mile radius of Charleston. The students work closely with faculty supervisors to provide appropriate treatment. Each week the student meets for a minimum of 30 minutes with the supervisor to discuss the case, critique clinic skills, and plan additional treatment. In many universities, one-on-one instruction does not occur until students enter advanced degree programs. Such instruction is available at EIU for students when they enroll in clinical practicum as first semester seniors.
Open Door Policy
The CDS department faculty offers a dynamic and interactive teaching style with a small student-teacher ratio. We also offer an open door policy and students are encouraged to stop by and interact on a regular basis. Individual attention and close student/instructor interaction is a key factor in success. When walking the halls you can be sure to see an “open door” and probably a student sitting with a faculty member discussing class, clinic, or a research project.
Integration of Teaching and Clinical Faculty
Faculty members are actively engaged in practicing their profession through teaching, supervisor, service on professional committees, attendance at conferences, and mentoring research. Dedicated faculty have clinical expertise and maintain a caseload in our clinic which insures that they are able to provide the latest treatment instruction. All faculty members teach courses, advice, and supervise in clinic. Their first priority is teaching YOU!
The Communication Disorders and Sciences Department continually reviews the undergraduate curriculum in order to offer a pre-professional bachelor’s degree that leads to dynamic options for the future. The undergraduate curriculum prepares students to meet the demands of graduate school academically, clinically and in research. Classes offer students the opportunity to apply classroom knowledge to clinical situations.
Working with Parents to Understand AAC Devices
Student Stephanie Fanale and Associate Professor Trina Becker discuss their studies on AAC devices.
The CDS Departmental Honors Program involves taking two research courses as an undergraduate. The first is a small seminar class that is taught to just 4-6 CDS honors students. Typically students enroll in this class during the fall of their junior year. Students take the second research methods course during the fall semester of their senior year. Students also sign up for 6 hours of thesis credit. When students sign up for thesis hours, they are working closely with an individual faculty mentor to review literature on a topic, plan a small research project in an area of speech pathology that interests the student, collect data for the research project, and write up the research project in the form of a thesis that is typically 30-40 pages in length.