Frequently Asked Questions About the CSD Graduate Program

1.What is the program’s accreditation status?

The master’s program (M.S.Ed.) in Speech-Language Pathology offered by the department of Communication Sciences and Disorders at the College of Saint Rose is currently accredited by the Council on Academic Accreditation in Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association, 2200 Research Blvd, #310, Rockville, Maryland, 20850, 800-498-2071 or 301-296-5700. The program is accredited through July 31, 2017.

2.I have heard that the department of Communication Sciences and Disorders is qualitatively different from other programs. Can you explain why this is so?

Yes. The department has, for the past 35 years, effectively prepared master clinicians by developing in them a unique combination of clinical, academic, and research knowledge, as well as interpersonal and advocacy skills. The department’s philosophy of clinical service delivery is consistent with the ethical standards, scope of practice, and current standards of practice of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association. It is our goal to serve individuals with communication disorders in the most effective and humane manner possible and to ensure that our students commit themselves to this fundamental clinical value.

Some specific features of our program that appeals to students include: small class size, “smart” classrooms, faculty approachability, broad level of faculty expertise, diversity of clinical placements, faculty involvement in clinical work, new on-campus clinic, and an active NSSLHA group. Distinctive department programs include: Council of Fluency, Voice Modification for People in the Trans-gendered Community, Support Group for Individuals with Neurogenic Communication Disorders, Preschool and Early Intervention Services, Communication Services for Adolescents who have Emotional and Social Issues, and a growing TBI program.

In addition, the department is part of a College that has long been dedicated to promoting academic excellence, developing a caring, diverse community, and empowering individuals to improve themselves and the world around them. Also, the department is part of The Lally School of Education which is known for its emphasis on promoting academic rigor, creating life-long learners, fostering collaboration, and developing strong personal and professional values. The school also values its long-standing engagement in the urban community and the important role this plays in expanding educational opportunities for our students.

The College of Saint Rose is a vibrant community that offers a variety of scholarly, cultural, and entertainment activities to all. These include music and art shows, theatre, lectures on a wide range of topics, and NCAA Division 2 Inter-Collegiate sports.

3. What services are available for students who have special needs?

Offices within the division of Student Affairs coordinate programs designed to support students and enhance their academic experience. Services include tutorial support, counseling for HEOP and ACCESS students, co-curricular programs and activities, services for disabled students, Multicultural Affairs, and the Academic Support Center. Please see the catalog for additional information.

If you are a student with a documented disability and require academic accommodations please register with the Director of Services for Students with Disabilities, located in the Academic Support Center on the 2nd floor of St. Joseph Hall (campus extension 2335 or 337-2335, off campus) for disability verification and for determination of recommended reasonable academic accommodations. After you have made arrangements with that office, please see me to discuss your accommodations. Please remember that timely notice will help avoid a delay in your receipt of accommodations.

4.What is a typical schedule for a graduate student in CSD?

Effective Spring, 2013, the graduate program requires completion of 56 credits in CSD academic and clinical coursework. Students who have met the requirements for New York State certification as a Teacher of Students with Speech-Language Disabilities at the undergraduate level may complete the program in five to six consecutive semesters. This means that a typical student would take 10 to 12 credits each semester. This usually includes a combination of courses and clinical practica. Graduate classes meet in the late afternoon or evening and most clinical placements are during the day. Most of our students pursue their degree on a full time basis, but part-time attendance is also an option. Data collected over the past three years suggests that 98% of our students complete the program within the expected time frame. Please refer to the following table for specific data: Information Tables

5.Does the department use any type of electronic communication system to help keep students updated on the department’s policies and procedures?

Yes. For the past several years, the College has been using Blackboard which is a very good way to communicate to students. The department has a number of documents housed in Blackboard for ease of availability for students. Also, faculty members are more frequently using it to post assignments and readings in an effort to use less paper.

6.What types of opportunities exist for students to do research within the department?

The department offers students various opportunities to do research. First, students who are interested in doing original research may, with the permission of the department, complete a master’s thesis, which satisfies six credits of elective coursework. Second, independent studies are available to students who would like to focus on the available research in an existing content area. Third, students who are eligible for graduate assistantships typically engage in research with a faculty member on a selected topic. Fourth, CSD 601 is designed for students who want to work with a faculty member on research projects. Finally, in the past our department has had many students who have presented research at the New York State Speech-Language-Hearing Association Convention and at ASHA and a new fund has been established to defray the costs for students who travel to present research.

7.Does the department have a student organization?

Yes. The College of Saint Rose has an active chapter of the National Student Speech-Language-Hearing Association (NSSLHA) with undergraduate and graduate members. The club’s goals are to benefit its members by promoting opportunities for continued education and chances to form meaningful relationships with students and professors in the Communication Sciences and Disorders major. Some NSSLHA-sponsored activities include a student-faculty dinner, monthly speakers at meetings, and events, such as the Mini-Convention and Grand Rounds, which promote education and awareness on select topics. The club also aims to keep its members informed about outside events related to the fields of Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology such as the ASHA and NYSSLHA conventions.

8.What clinical opportunities are there for graduate students?

Over the past 30 years, the department has developed excellent contacts in the community that allow students to engage in challenging and rewarding clinical opportunities across a wide range of disability areas and ages. At last count, the department has access to approximately 300 placement sites.

9. Is it difficult for students to meet the ASHA requirement of 400 clock hours?

In order to assist students in accruing the required 400 clock hours, the program offers 10 clinical credits spread over 5 practica (3 on-campus and 2 in the community). The on-campus placements include CSD 580 (in our on-campus clinic), CSD 586 (Council for Effective Communication) and CSD 589 (Specialty Clinics). CSD 587 (child placement which may be student teaching for those requiring it) and CSD 585 (adult placement which may be in a hospital, nursing home or with persons with developmental disabilities) comprise the off-campus practica. Students complete academic coursework and clinical practica concurrently over five to six full-time semesters. With graduate courses being offered at 4:30 and 7:15 p.m., students are able to participate in practica during the day.

10. Does undergraduate clinical work count toward the 400 clock hours?

Supervised observation hours (25) also count toward the 400 clock hours. ASHA requires that at least 325 clock hours of the 400 be accrued at the graduate level.

11. If my undergraduate degree is in something other than CSD, am I still eligible to apply for the graduate program?

Yes. A number of our applicants have bachelor’s degrees in other fields and apply to our graduate program. If accepted, these students take undergraduate pre-requisites before beginning graduate coursework. These courses may be taken here at The College of Saint Rose or equivalent coursework can be taken at another institution and then transferred into the College. The pre-requisite course work involves content in phonetics, anatomy and physiology, speech sound disorders, audiology, language development, language disorders, voice/fluency, clinical methods, and clinical practicum. The total number of pre-requisite credits is 33. Students who need pre-requisite coursework typically add semesters onto their time here, depending on the number of courses they need.

12.Is it possible to take these undergraduate pre-requisites as a non-matriculated student before applying to the graduate program?

Yes. It is important to note that many institutions, including Saint Rose, limit the number of courses a student may take at a non-matriculated basis. In the CSD department, students may take the following courses on a non-matriculated basis: CSD 100, CSD 109, CSD 204, and CSD 240.

13.Might other courses (in addition to my CSD courses) be required as part of the graduate degree?

Yes, depending on what courses you have taken previously. For example, ASHA requires one course each in biological science, physical science, math, and social/behavioral science. Also, in order to be eligible for teacher certification, students must show evidence of course work in education, educational psychology, and the liberal arts. The New York State Education Department also requires educational workshops, and successful completion of two state certification exams. If you will need additional coursework, this will extend the typical five to six semester timeframe required to complete the program. (See advisement materials for details).

14.Can I apply to the graduate program at any time or are there specific admissions deadlines?

There are two application deadlines each year: February 1st for summer and fall semester admission and October 1st for spring semester admission.

15.How are admissions decisions made?

An admissions committee is made up of members of the department. This committee reviews all files that meet the minimum criteria. Some students will not be accepted, typically based on some combination of the following: low grade point average, letters of recommendation that do not address their ability to do scholarly work, and a poorly written personal statement. The majority of the applications whose files are competitive will be invited to the College for an interview. These interviews also include a spontaneous writing sample. Once the interviews are completed, students are notified of the committee’s decision in writing.

16. What data does the department collect regarding the following: a) the number of students who complete the program, b) the number of students who complete the program in the expected time frame, c) the pass rates for the Praxis exam, and d) the number of graduates employed in the profession within 1 year of graduation?

Please click on this link for specific data: Information Tables

17.Do students graduating from the CSD department have success in finding employment in the field?

Yes. Data provided from interviews with graduating students and surveys completed by former students reveal that over the past three years, 95% found employment in the field within 2 months of graduating. It is common for students to secure employment prior to graduating as a result of their successful clinical placements. Students are employed in a variety of geographic locations in the US and in Canada.
Informational Tables

18.What kind of financial aid is available?

The College of Saint Rose is a member of the Federal Family Education Loan (FASA) program. By filling out a FAFSA, all graduate students are considered for a Federal Stafford Subsidized Loan and a Federal Stafford Unsubsidized Loan. Eligibility for the Tuition Assistance Program (TAP) and Pell Grant is determined by specific formulas established by appropriate state and federal agencies. The Office of Graduate and Continuing Education Admissions also awards a handful of very competitive scholarships. In addition, approximately 80 graduate assistantship positions are sponsored by the College. Both the scholarships and assistantships require additional applications, which can be found online at the Graduate Admissions website.

19.When can I visit campus?

The Office of Graduate and Continuing Education Admissions hosts on-campus information sessions for interested students. Information sessions provide general information about The College of Saint Rose and how your educational needs may be met through our programs. Counselors and College representatives will be available to answer questions, give tours, and introduce you to the application process. Students are also invited to visit the campus at their convenience by scheduling an appointment with the Office of Graduate and Continuing Education Admissions.

20.What kind of housing is available in Albany?

With over 60,000 students calling the Albany area home, it is easy to find housing that meets your needs and budget. Housing options in Albany range from brownstones in downtown Albany neighborhoods, to garden apartments in the surrounding suburbs. The Office of Campus Life hosts an off-campus housing webpage where students can search for apartments and roommates. Additionally, University Heights College Suites offers student apartments at a fixed monthly rate.

21.What is it like to live in Albany?

The College of Saint Rose is located in the capital of New York State, so there are many things on- and off-campus to discover. Campus clubs and organizations host numerous speakers, musicians, artists, and trips throughout the year. The Albany area is home to numerous festivals, parks, museums, restaurants, and theatres. If you like to shop, Crossgates Mall is the third largest mall in the state and is minutes from campus. The College of Saint Rose is also less than an hour drive from Saratoga and Lake George, as well as many other outdoor recreation areas