With a bachelor’s degree in Communication Sciences & Disorders, students find employment in fields related to education, health care and communications. However, graduates must earn a master’s degree in order to become a licensed, nationally certified speech-language pathologist. Students who complete the master’s degree program at Saint Rose are able to find employment immediately after graduation. For specific data, please see Frequently Asked Questions.
As a Saint Rose graduate in Communication Sciences & Disorders, you will be well prepared to pursue graduate study. Many students who receive their bachelor’s degrees from Saint Rose elect to apply to the College’s well-regarded master’s program in Communication Sciences & Disorders, where they can continue to study with the expert faculty that they have come to regard as mentors. The graduate program, leading to the Master of Science in Education degree, satisfies the academic and clinical requirements for the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA) Certificate of Clinical Competence (CCC), New York state licensure and New York state teaching certification. The professional education programs at The College of Saint Rose are accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE), recognized by their respective Program Associations and registered with the New York State Education Department.
Saint Rose Communication Sciences & Disorders undergraduates who have chosen to pursue graduate study at other institutions have been accepted to a variety of prestigious graduate programs. In fact, some Saint Rose graduates report being placed in advanced level master’s study due to their thorough undergraduate preparation at Saint Rose.
The Communication Sciences & Disorders Department has a unique and comprehensive sequence of clinical field experiences starting in the first year and culminating with an integrated, clinical practice experience and seminar during the senior year. The sequence of clinical experiences includes:
- As a requirement of CSD 100, students will assist and observe a speech-language pathologist in a clinical setting for 15 hours.
- In CSD 109, students will be required to observe a speech-language pathologist for 15 hours in a public school.
- Clinical Methods & Supervised Observation: In the third year of study, students will learn how to plan and implement speech and language services in a variety of clinical settings. Students complete 25 hours of observation of therapy and diagnostic sessions under the supervision of an ASHA-certified speech-language pathologist.
- Supervised Clinical Practice: In the final year of study, students will take part in a clinical experience that includes supervised assessment and treatment of clients with speech and language problems as well as typical communication development. Students share their clinical experiences with peers in a required seminar.
The Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders at The College of Saint Rose embraces a philosophy of clinical service delivery that is consistent with the ethical standards, scope of practice, and current standards of practice of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association and the Council of Academic Accreditation. 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. Achieving this goal requires acquisition of a large number of clinical skills and competencies, and their flexible application to meet varied clinical needs.
VALUES: In addition to teaching these basic skills and competencies, our campus clinic and clinical training program advocate and teach an approach to clinical service that is centered around the following values:
- Empowerment-Focused Intervention: Ultimately our goal as clinicians is to help clients and family members understand their strengths and needs, and take responsibility for their own growth as communicators.
- Collaboration: To meet the goal of client and family empowerment, clinicians attempt to create a working alliance with clients, family members, and possibly other significant people in the client’s life. Genuine collaboration requires engaging all of these individuals as much as possible in identifying and understanding strengths and needs, setting goals, identifying appropriate ways to achieve those goals, monitoring progress, expanding newly acquired skills into all natural communication environments, modifying intervention and supports as needed, and making decisions about termination of services. Although our primary partners in collaboration are our clients, we also collaborate with family members, teachers, other community professionals, paraprofessionals, and others who may be instrumental in facilitating improved communication in the individuals we serve.
- Contextualized/Functional Intervention: Knowing that skills that are taught outside of the functional contexts of people’s lives are predictably not effectively integrated into those lives, intervention is designed to incorporate an appropriate sensitivity to the individual’s real world. This includes using real-world interests and activities as the context of therapy as well as creating partnerships with real-world people so that intervention is integrated into that real world.
- Focus on Strengths: Clinical intervention is not simply a process of identifying deficits and engaging the client in a program of exercises to remediate the identified deficits. Intervention focuses as much as possible on the individual’s strengths, because people are more than collections of deficits and also because strengths can be used to compensate for ongoing disability.
- Integration of Clinical and Academic Training: The Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders promotes integration of clinical and academic training by infusing a practical clinical orientation into the academic program and by facilitating the application of knowledge acquired in courses within clinical training experiences. To this end, all of the members of the academic faculty also supervise student clinicians and apply this clinical philosophy.
- Student Clinicians as Problem Solvers. The focus of the clinical training program is less to equip students with therapy programs and curricula, and more to train them in the skills of clinical analysis and critical thinking so that they will be in a position to flexibly create appropriately customized programs of intervention for the individuals they serve.
- Clinicians as Agents of Change in Human Development: Because of the pervasiveness and importance of communication in the lives of people, clinicians must see themselves in the broad context of promoting growth and maturation in the clients they serve. In its broadest terms, therapy for individuals with communication disorders implies an invitation to them to participate in the complete domain of life memberships.
ROLES: To implement all of the components of this clinical philosophy, student clinicians must acquire more than technical knowledge and clinical competencies; they must also perceive themselves as playing a variety of clinical roles and execute these roles skillfully. In addition to the traditional medical, educational and training roles associated with diagnosis of a communication impairment and symptom-oriented treatment of that impairment, clinicians must also creatively and flexibly play substantially different roles, including:
- Consultant: Clinicians serve as consultants to everyday people in the client’s life, and also to clients themselves, providing them with the technical assistance they may need to achieve their own goals and objectives;
- Coach: Because the clinical process extends beyond diagnosing an impairment and implementing a treatment program designed to remediate the impairment, clinicians must use the skills of a coach to inspire their clients to achieve lofty goals, to help their clients to identify their real-world obstacles, and to work with the clients to create a “game plan” that will enable them to achieve real-world success.
- Model Communicator: Clinicians show clients the way to improved communication in part by serving as models of exceptional communication, thereby inviting the client to serve an apprenticeship in communication with them.
- Counselor: The goals of empowerment and self-realization as communicators are achieved in part by clinicians using the skills of clinician-counselors, helping clients understand their strengths as well as their needs, the resources available to them to achieve their goals, and their responsibilities in achieving those goals.
These varied roles are played within the context of (a) flexible judgments about how best to serve individual clients and (b) commitment to the unique professional contributions made by each member of professional teams that serve individuals with communication disorders, possibly necessitating referral to other professionals or agencies.
The Communication Sciences & Disorders faculty is nationally and internationally recognized for its scholarly work in a variety of areas, including stuttering, neurogenic communication disorders, augmentative-alternative communication, voice, and speech sound disorders for the speech-language pathologist. Faculty scholarship is actively integrated into the department’s curriculum affording you the opportunity to work closely with a team of experts. While teaching and supervising student-clinicians is the first priority of our professors, faculty members also hold leadership positions in state, national and international organizations, helping to set policy for New York state and the nation. Communication Sciences & Disorders majors are encouraged to take an active role in departmental policy-making through involvement in NSSLHA, the fall and spring program meetings and representation at weekly faculty meetings.
Dave DeBonis, Ph.D.
Specialty: audiology, educational psychology
Jim Feeney, Ph.D.
Communication Sciences & Disorders
Specialty: developmental disabilities, literacy, augmentative communication, traumatic brain injury
Julia Unger , Ph.D.
Specialty: Stuttering, Fluency issues
Robert Owens, Ph. D.
Specialty: language development, language disorders, literacy, diversity, and early intervention
John Pickering, Jr., Ph.D.
Specialty: voice, speech and hearing science
Anne Toolan Rowley, Ph. D.
Specialty: language development, school age and written language disorders
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Deirdre Muldoon, Ph.D.
Elizabeth Baird, M.A., CCC-SLP
Marisa Bryant, M.S., CCC-SLP
Preschool Early Intervention Supervisor
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Sarah Coons, M.S., CCC-SLP
Primary College Supervisor
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Elaine Galbraith, M.S., CCC-SLP
Preschool Early Intervention Supervisor
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Julie Hart, M.S., CCC-SLP
Director of TBI Medicaid Waiver Services
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Barbara Hoffman, M.S., CCC-SLP
Winkler Center Coordinator
Jacqueline Klein, M.A., CCC-SLP
Director of Clinical Services/Clinical Supervisor
Melissa Spring, M.S., CCC-SLP
Insurance Coordinator/Clinical Supervisor
Colleen Fluman, M.Ed., CCC-SLP
Early Intervention/Preschool Coordinator
Robin Anderson, M.S., CCC-SLP
Lottie Dunbar, M.S., CCC-SLP
TBI Program Clinical Supervisor
Jessica Evans, M.A., CCC-SLP
CSD Placement Coordinator/Clinical Supervisor
Juli Schaller-Smith, M.S., C.A.S.
Preschool Services School Psychologist
Zhaleh Lavasani, M.S., CCC-SLP
CFY Speech-Language Pathologist
Lynn Stephens, M.S., CCC-SLP
Early Intervention/Preschool Service Provider
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, 2025.
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 Consultation Services for Individuals with TBI.
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 an undergraduate student in CSD?
Most students take 15 to 16 credits each semester.
This usually includes a combination of CSD and liberal arts courses. Most of our students pursue their degree on a full time basis, but part-time attendance is also an option.
5. Can I take graduate courses in the last semester of my undergraduate program?
With department permission, students who are in their last semester of the undergraduate program and are within 9 credits of the 122 credits needed to graduate may take a maximum of 2 graduate courses. These courses count toward the graduate degree, not the undergraduate degree. Interested students can obtain the graduate application using the instructions provided in item 10 below. It is not necessary to complete all of the steps for applying to the graduate program. Simply complete the identifying information on the application and obtain the necessary signatures. Permission to take these graduate courses does not mean that the student has been accepted into the graduate program. For specific questions, contact the graduate office at 518-458-5358.
Students who complete their bachelor’s degree in less than four years may apply to our graduate program by October1st for the spring semester or by February 1st for the summer and fall semesters.
6. 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.
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 undergraduate students?
As a requirement of CSD 100, students will assist and observe a speech-language pathologist in a clinical setting for 15 hours.
In CSD 109, students will be required to observe a speech-language pathologist for 15 hours in a public school. In the third year of study, students will learn how to plan and implement speech and language services in a variety of clinical settings during Clinical Methods & Supervised Observation. Students complete 25 hours of observation of therapy and diagnostic sessions under the supervision of an ASHA-certified speech-language pathologist. In the final year of study, students will take part in a clinical experience that includes supervised assessment and treatment of clients with speech and language problems as well as typical communication development. Students share their clinical experiences with peers in a required seminar.
9. Does undergraduate clinical work count toward the ASHA required 400 clock hours?
Students are allowed to carry over 75 hours. 25 of these are supervised observation hours and 50 are from clinical practice. ASHA requires that at least 325 clock hours of the 400 be accrued at the graduate level.
10. What are the steps involved in applying to the CSD graduate program?
After entering the college’s website (www.strose.edu), the following sequence of steps will bring students to the necessary graduate program application materials: 1)Future Students, 2) Saint Rose Academics, 3) School of Education, 4) Communication Sciences and Disorders, 5) MSED in Communication Sciences and Disorders, 6) online application. Students have the option to apply directly online or to download the forms and apply using U.S. mail.
Students who attended the Saint Rose undergraduate program are not required to obtain letters of reference from departmental faculty. It is advisable to ask faculty to speak on your behalf. Recommendations from individuals outside the college (e.g., clinical supervisors) should be submitted in writing. For specifics call 518-454-5136 (Note: Students who are applying to other graduate programs should open a credential file in the Career Center).
11. 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.
12. Do students graduating from the CSD department do well on the PRAXIS exam?
Yes. In fact, data from the past few years reveals that our pass rate is between 85% and 100%. Please click on this link for specific data. Informational Tables
13. 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 95 % are finding employment in the field within 1-3 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.
14. 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.
15. 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.
16. 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.
- CSD 100 Survey of Communication Sciences and Disorders
- CSD 109 Phonetics
- CSD 204 Anatomy and Physiology of Speech and Swallowing
- CSD 219 Speech Sound Disorders
- CSD 225 Hearing Disorders and Assessment
- CSD 240 Language Development
- CSD 245 Introduction to Research Methods in CSD
- CSD 345 Language Disorders in Children
- CSD 346 Cognition,Communication,Behavior
- CSD 350 Fluency/Voice/Resonance Disorders
- CSD 360 Clinical Methods and Supervised Observation
- CSD 370 Supervised Clinical Practicum
- CSD 371 Clinical Practicum Seminar
- CSD 380 Topics in CSD
- CSD 430 Aural Rehabilitation
- SED 450 Organization of a Speech, Language and Hearing Program in Elementary and Secondary Schools
- CSD 490 Undergraduate Capstone in CSD
- CSD 497 The Nervous System and Communication
- CSD 499 Independent Study
Dual Degree Program in CSD
Effective Fall, 2006 and revised in 2011, the department is approved to offer a combined undergraduate/graduate dual degree program in CSD for freshmen students as part of an ongoing effort to recruit and retain highly motivated and scholarly students who have the potential to become effective and compassionate speech-language pathologists. The program accelerates movement through the bachelor’s degree by one semester.
Students who are accepted into this program will take all of the CSD classes that are required in the traditional program, will meet all liberal arts core requirements, and will meet all teacher certification requirements. The total undergraduate credits equal 117. The graduate portion is 56 credits. The undergraduate portion of this program may be completed in 3.5 years (excluding summers); the graduate portion is typically completed in 5 to 6 additional semesters (including summers).
Applications to the dual degree program will be reviewed by the CSD admissions committee (which also reviews graduate applications). Students should meet the following academic profile: 1200 combined SAT score, high school average of 92 in English and Science, a strong letter of recommendation, and an on-campus interview.
Teacher Certification Exams
In preparation for New York State (NYS) teacher certification as a Teacher of Students with Speech-Language Disabilities at the graduate level, undergraduate students are required to pass the Liberal Arts and Sciences Test (LAST) and the elementary version of the Assessment of Teaching Skills-Written (ATS-W).
This table Required Certification Exams by Program summarizes the certification exams needed for New York State Teacher Certification by academic program and when the exam should be taken.
Exam registration and preparation materials can be found on the The New York State Teacher Certification Examinations website. The New York State Teacher Certification Examinations™ (NYSTCE®) address New York Education Law and Commissioner’s Regulations, which require prospective New York State educators to pass designated tests as a requirement for receiving state certification.
The NYSTCE are criterion-referenced, objective-based tests designed to measure a candidate’s knowledge and skills in relation to an established standard rather than in relation to the performance of other candidates. The explicit purpose of these tests is to help identify for certification those candidates who have demonstrated the appropriate level of knowledge and skills that are important for performing the responsibilities of an educator in New York State public schools.
Test questions were developed using textbooks, New York State learning standards and curriculum guides, teacher education curricula, and certification standards. The tests were developed in consultation with committees of New York State teachers, teacher educators, and other content and assessment specialists.
Multisubject Test: Early Childhood and Childhood three part test
This Guide will help you understand the three part Multi-Subject test Content Specialty Test (CST) required for the Early Childhood, Early Childhood/Special Education, Childhood and Childhood Special Education.
Candidates will need to pass each of the three sections of the assessment, (the Math, the English Language Arts and general knowledge sections will be scored separately) to meet the certification requirements.
Along with the workshops provided by our faculty (see important dates) there are updated test frameworks and other useful information for test preparation, are now available on the New York State Teacher Certification Examination (NYSTCE) website.
Candidates taking one of the following CSTs on or after September 22, 2014, must take the revised CST examination for certification: English Language Arts; Multi-Subject: Teachers of Early Childhood (Birth–Grade 2); Multi-Subject: Teachers of Childhood (Grade 1-Grade 6); Multi-Subject: Teachers of Middle Childhood (Grade 5–Grade 9); Multi-Subject: Secondary Teachers (Grade 7–Grade 12); Business and Marketing.
Candidates who are working towards the Students with Disabilities Grades 7-12 Generalist certification will be required to take the Multi-Subject: Secondary Teachers (Grade 7 – Grade 12) examination once it is becomes available on September 22, 2014.
Upon graduation with a Bachelor of Science in Education, the students will:
- Be prepared for graduate studies in communication sciences and disorders and/or related disciplines
- Understand basic human communication and swallowing processes
- Integrate liberal arts and sciences education with the program’s pre-professional, clinical education
- Understand typical, disordered, delayed, and different communication systems and behaviors, within a framework of respect for cultural diversity
- Demonstrate basic clinical skills that are consistent with evidence-based practice (EBP)
- Assimilate classroom instruction and clinical decision-making in preparation for clinical work
- Understand professional issues that face practitioners in the communication sciences and disorders
- Demonstrate professional attributes consistent with the department’s clinical philosophy
- Be able to use the preparation acquired in their Communication Sciences and Disorders (CSD) major as a foundation for work or further study in other disciplines.
Students, faculty, staff and persons served in the program’s clinic are treated in a nondiscriminatory manner-that is without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, participation restriction, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, or status as a parent. The institution and program comply with all applicable laws, regulations and executive orders pertaining thereto (ASHA Standard 1.6). In addition, the program makes reasonable adaptations in the curriculum, policies, and procedures to accommodate difference among individual students (ASHA 4.2). Reflecting an underlying respect for and understanding of cultural and individual diversity (ASHA 4.2.2). This policy is consistent with The College of Saint Rose Board of Trustees.
You will have ample opportunity to keep abreast of professional development within the field, as Saint Rose is home to a chapter of the National Student Speech-Language-Hearing Association (NSSLHA). With strong undergraduate leadership and faculty involvement, NSSLHA sponsors a number of professional and social events throughout the year, including an on-campus spring conference at which nationally known experts present workshops on state-of-the-art issues.