Undergraduate study in communicative disorders at Northern Illinois University is structured to provide a foundation of basic information regarding the normal development of speech, language and hearing. Students also take course work in mathematics, physics, biology, psychology, child and adult development, counseling and sign language.
Students in this emphasis are often preparing for professional practice as either audiologists or speech-language pathologists although some graduates choose not to pursue a graduate degree and use the acquired knowledge as a strong foundation for employment in human services careers.
The graduate specialization in speech-language pathology is typically completed in six semesters. Students enroll for classes and after the first semester of classes engage in clinical practicum each semester. During the first five semesters, students attend class and work in the on-campus clinic and local off-campus clinical sites. The last semester of study consists of a full-time off-campus practicum. Students typically spend nine weeks in a school setting and nine weeks in a hospital/rehab setting.