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EIU Department of Communication Disorders and Sciences

Undergraduate CDS Program

The bachelor's degree is a pre-professional degree and is not sufficient for practice as a speech-language pathologist or audiologist. At Eastern Illinois University, a bachelor's degree in communication disorders and sciences requires 120 semester hours of coursework and is typically completed in four years.  Undergraduates begin treating clients in Eastern's Speech Clinic during their senior year. Transfer Students with an associates degree complete a bachelors degree in two years without an undergraduate clinical assignment. Two and a half or three year options for CDS coursework and clinic are strongly recommended.  Three or four year CDS study plans compared to two or two and a half year study plans are described on the transfer page.


  • Undergraduate program sequence prepares students for graduate study in speech pathology or audiology
  • Rigorous but functional classes taught by faculty who worked as SLPs and who make teaching their first priority
  • ¨Open-Door” policy—easy to stop by and ask a faculty member a question. Tutoring in CDS courses often available from  graduate assistants
  • Seats in CDS courses guaranteed; coursework foundation is good no matter where you go to graduate school
  • Structured/sequenced curriculum to optimize success
  • Independent study opportunities to explore specific interests in CDS

Clinical Experiences as an Undergraduate

  • Full semester structured clinical shadowing experience in EIU clinic. Small group teaching in 3900 course and participate in meetings and planning with clinician and clinical supervisor
  • Treat  your own client for a full semester in EIU clinic and be supervised in a 1;1 setting by an EIU clinical faculty member if you attend EIU as an undergrad for 3 or 4 years
  • Shadow a diagnostic case and present in capstone course

CDS Faculty Member as Your Advisor

  • A faculty  member gets to know you in their role as your advisor
  • Faculty give  advice  about minors, service learning opportunities,  summer work suggestions,  study strategies, study abroad options, graduate school applications, and general guidance as needed

CDS Honors Program and Other Research Experiences

  • Go out to the schools or other clinical settings and assist  faculty with research as part of an independent study
  • Opportunity  to work on a individual research project for an honor’s thesis with a faculty mentor over a 2-year period. Present at state and national conferences

Study Abroad Opportunities

  • CDS faculty–led study abroad usually offered in May
  • CDS faculty advisors can help you find other study abroad opportunities such as spring break, summer, or full semester in universities abroad with speech-pathology programs

Related Pages

Contact Information

Department of Communication Disorders and Sciences

600 Lincoln Ave.
Charleston, IL 61920
(217) 581-2712
(217) 581-7105t

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