Welcome to the stimulating and rewarding profession of speech-language pathology and the Department of Communication Disorders and Sciences at Eastern Illinois University.
CDS offers current, challenging and applied curriculum in its academic and clinical requirements. It is a program of study for speech-language pathology within the College of Health & Human Services.
Internship supervisors and employers report that EIU speech pathology students are well-prepared to work in medical and education settings.
Mean ASHA Praxis exam scores from EIU are significantly above the state and national averages. In fact, in 2018, 10,670 grad students took the Praxis Speech-Language Pathology exam nationally. ONLY 48 people of 10,670 scored a perfect 200 on the exam and 3 of them were from EIU. In 2017, 9,532 grad students took the SLP Praxis exam. Only 28 people of the more than 9,000 test takers had a perfect score and 1 of them was from EIU.
EIU faculty are the clinical supervisors, not adjunct staff. EIU faculty members provide mentoring, demonstration, clinical resources, and scaffolded clinical expectations as part of the clinical instruction process. We see clinical assignments as a valuable clinical teaching opportunity.
Undergraduate and graduate students in EIU’s Speech-Language-Hearing Clinic provide diagnostic and treatment services to more than 100 clients per semester. Clients include toddlers, preschoolers, elementary, high school and college-age students with a variety of speech and language disorders. Adults with acquired disorders such as voice, aphasia, cognitive-communication, dysarthria, and apraxia are also seen at the clinic. EIU supervisors also provide services with graduate students at local schools.
EIU graduate students receive a wide variety of clinical experiences prior to full-time internships.
After coursework and on-campus clinic experiences are completed (typically in 14 months, summer-fall-spring-summer), graduate students complete a full-time 14-week internships in a school setting and another full-time 14-week internship in a medical setting. Our internship coordinators meet with graduate students to understand their preferences for type of setting and location. Our internship coordinators make all the calls and emails to secure internship placements. Some sites which students have been placed are as close as Mattoon IL and as far away as Germany, Nevada, Texas, Florida, Connecticut, and Hawaii. A map of sites where students have been place can be accessed here.
Dedicated faculty have clinical expertise and maintain a caseload in our clinic which insures that they are able to provide the latest treatment instruction. In addition, faculty are in contact with working professionals and internship supervisors gathering feedback on specific disorder areas that need to be infused in course curriculum. Consequently, faculty expertise and feedback from working speech-pathologists provide the basis for case scenarios and video examples infused in academic courses. In addition, many class assignments are case based and promote application and integration of course knowledge. Internship supervisors consistently comment on how well prepared EIU graduate students are for their internship experiences. Our faculty strongly believe this is in part due to our dedication to case-based instruction and Grand Rounds, a unique case-based capstone course.
Faculty in CDS are in their offices with the doors open throughout the week so that students are welcome to stop by and interact on a regular basis. Individual attention and close student/instructor interaction is a key factor to success in the department. When walking the halls, you can be sure to see many “open doors” with students sitting with faculty discussing class, clinic, study abroad opportunities, or a research project. Students are our highest priority.
The master's degree program includes 30 semester hours of core courses required for all candidates and 4 semester hours of special topics selected by the student for specialization and interest, seven semester hours of advanced practicum. The final two semesters consist of a full-time 14-week medical internship and a full-time 14-week educational internship that can be completed throughout the state or country. Click here for more information on this program.
For students who have a baccalaureate degree in a major other than CDS. Click here for more information on this program.
Dr. Ramrattan and Dr. Anthony are both interested in how hearing and language interact. Dr. Anthony is an undergraduate alumni of EIU and then she received her master’s degree in speech-language pathology at Gallaudet University, where the majority of students are deaf or hard-of-hearing. Dr. Ramrattan conducts research on hearing and dementia. She is a veteran herself and enjoys conducting hearing evaluations for veterans and ROTC candidates. Dr. Anthony and Dr. Ramrattan work together on Central Auditory Processing and Language Processing Evaluations.
Jill Fahy is a nationally known expert in executive dysfunction. She has written books and articles about executive dysfunction for speech-language pathologists (SLPs) and has presented to SLP groups across the country and internationally. She infuses her knowledge of executive dysfunction in her undergraduate and graduate courses as well as in her clinical supervision with graduate and undergraduate student clinicians. She has received multiple teaching awards for her excellent classroom and clinical instruction.
Dr. Mulvey is fascinated by child language development and disorders. She always mentors students as she investigates topics such as social skills and bullying or pragmatic language analyses in language transcripts. She has received multiple teaching awards for her excellent classroom and clinical instruction as well as awards for mentoring students in research. She has been a leader in the national speech-pathology professional organization’s (ASHA) Special Interest Group for Language Learning and Education and has numerous presentations and publications about child language.