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Most Affordable Online Speech Pathology Master’s Degrees

most_affordable_online_speech_pathology_degreesBecoming a speech pathologist is a rewarding career that makes a difference in people’s lives. To become a speech pathologist you’ll need to earn a strong 4-year degree and a master’s degree. Discovering which graduate school to attend can be difficult especially when finding an online school. We’re here to help make the process easier.

Below we’ve compiled a list of the top nine graduate schools to attend while earning an online speech pathology master’s degree. The schools in this article are highly recognized for their dedication to students’ success. Graduating with your master’s in speech pathology will prepare you for a career as a speech therapist, clinical audiologist, or special education therapist. You’ll be trained by professionals in the field and practice your skills by participating in an internship. These schools will make you the best in the career of your choice.

Methodology

All schools considered for these rankings

  • Are regionally or nationally accredited
  • Offer at least one fully online master’s in speech-language pathology degree (with no more than two weeks of required in-person work)
  • Were collected from official accrediting agency websites.

Schools are ranked solely by the average net price as released in the most recent IPEDs database collected in 2020

2021 Most Affordable Online Speech Pathology Programs

Rank School Average Net Price
#1 California State University-Northridge $8,243
#2 Texas Woman’s University $9,727
#3 University of South Florida Online $9,838
#4 Tennessee State University $10,427
#5 Western Kentucky University $12,776
#6 University of Northern Colorado $14,230
#7 University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire $15,673
#8 University of Akron $17,124
#9 James Madison University $21,281

9 Best Affordable Colleges for Online Speech Pathology Programs

1. California State University-Northridge

Average Net Price: $8,243
School Type: Public, Non-Profit
School Accreditation: WSCUC
Acceptance Rate: 58%

California State University-Northridge was founded in 1958 and is in Los Angeles, California. The college has achieved numerous awards and ranks #40 in Regional Universities West.

The online Speech Pathology programs at California State University-Northridge contain a three-part method of teaching — service for the improvement of human ability in speech, language and hearing, and research.

You are grouped with other students in a three-year-long program. All your classes will be taken online. The clinical part of your studies will be conducted in your area of residence.

For entry-level employment as a speech-language pathologist, a Master of Science Degree is required. Once you have completed the bachelor’s and Master’s degree programs you will be licensed in all US states to practice in the fields of medicine, rehabilitation, or private practice. Your education credentials also qualify you to work in public schools. You will also have your professional certification by the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association.

California State University – Northridge Graduate Programs – Niche
Communicative Disorders, M.S. (csun.edu)
California State University–Northridge Graduate Programs and Degrees – US News
Communication Disorders and Sciences | California State University, Northridge (csun.edu)
Graduate Distance Learning Program: | California State University, Northridge (csun.edu)

2. Texas Woman’s University

Average Net Price: $9,727
School Type: Public, Non-Profit
School Accreditation: SACS COC
Acceptance Rate: 86%

Texas Woman’s University is in Denton, Texas a part of the Dallas-Fort Worth area. Founded in 1901, it was called the Girls Industrial College. It became Texas Woman’s University in 1957.

The online Speech Pathology Master’s program at Texas Woman’s University is 27 months long. You must attend one of the posted information webinars before applying.

There are 61 semester credit hours taken over seven semesters. The breakdown is 41 credit hours of mandatory coursework, 2 credit hours of electives, and 18 credit hours of clinic taken over six of the seven semesters. You will also be required to maintain a sponsorship from a Texas educational institution. An extensive exam must be taken before you complete the Master’s Speech Pathology program.

After graduation, you are required to work as a speech-language pathologist in Texas schools for an unspecified period of time.

Texas Woman’s University Graduate Programs – Niche
MS in Speech-Language Pathology – Communication Sciences and Oral Health – Texas Woman’s University (twu.edu)
Distance Education SLP Degree & Admission Details – Communication Sciences and Oral Health – Texas Woman’s University (twu.edu)
Texas Woman’s University – Net Price, Tuition, Cost to Attend, Financial Aid and Student Loans (collegesimply.com)

3. University of South Florida Online

Average Net Price: $9,838
School Type: Public, Non-Profit
School Accreditation: SACS COC
Acceptance Rate: 45%

The University of South Florida was founded in 1956 and has an overall ranking of 103 in National Universities. You can expect excellent academics, superior interdisciplinary research, an acclaimed faculty, outstanding college athletics, and beautiful Florida sunny weather all year.

The online Speech Pathology program at the University of South Florida is called Suncoast Track. Applicants must have a bachelor’s degree and currently be working full-time as speech-language clinicians in one of the Suncoast Consortium school districts. The program consists of 9 semesters using a combination of on-site and distance instruction.

You will be required to complete practicum experiences in the school district where you are employed, as well as complete one clinical practicum at the University of South Florida’s Speech-Language-Hearing Center in Tampa. During two of the summers of your three-year program, you must complete an externship experience while attending Tampa’s Speech-Language-Hearing Center.

When you graduate with a Master’s in Speech-Language Pathology, you will have a wide variety of careers open to you.

History | University of South Florida (usf.edu)
University of South Florida – Profile, Rankings, and Data | US News Best Colleges
Why Choose USF?
suncoast-map.pdf (usf.edu)

4. Tennessee State University

Average Net Price: $10,427
School Type: Public, Non-Profit
School Accreditation: SACS COC
Acceptance Rate: 66%

Tennessee State University was founded in 1912 and is a four-year, historically black university. It is one of the largest black universities located on a 500-acre campus. It is also a member of the Thurgood Marshall College Fund. Tennessee State University is comprised of five colleges, three schools, and the Institute of Government.

The Department of Speech Pathology and Audiology offers a Master of Science degree which can be acquired on their campus or online through a distance-learning format. The online distance learning program is only offered every other year and space is limited to 30 students.

You will be required to complete online coursework in addition to 400 practicum hours consisting of 375 in direct client/patient contact and 25 in clinical observation. Your first two practicum experiences will take place over two summers. Your third and fourth practicum experiences will be in a locally approved location close to your residence.

Completing the online Speech Pathology Master’s degree program at Tennessee State University allows you to be certified by the American Speech Hearing Language Association (ASHA), and obtain your licensure by the State of Tennessee’s Department of Health and/or Department of Education.

Employment opportunities include working at the clinic or hospital where you finished your clinical fellowship, working in Tennessee’s Early Intervention Program which gives early intervention services to families of small children with speech disorders, or work in the public school system assisting children with a speech disability.

Tennessee State University (1912- ) • (blackpast.org)
Detailed Program Admission Requirements (tnstate.edu)
Online Master’s in Speech Pathology at Tennessee State University (speechpathologymastersprograms.com)
Online Speech-Language Pathology Graduate Programs in Tennessee | SLP Schools and Degrees in TN (speechpathologygraduateprograms.org)

5. Western Kentucky University

Average Net Price: $12,776
School Type: Public, Non-Profit
School Accreditation: SACS COC
Acceptance Rate: 95%

Western Kentucky University is in Bowling Green and was founded in 1906 by the Commonwealth of Kentucky. It has campuses in Owensboro, Glasgow, and Elizabethtown-Fort Knox. Trips to Harlaxton College in Grantham, England are done every semester. Other students travel around the world with the Semester at Sea program.

You will find Master’s Speech Pathologist programs online as well as on-campus at Western Kentucky University. Western Kentucky University offers both full-time and part-time programs for their online Master of Science in Speech and Language Pathology. You are required to complete 57-63 credit hours that include clinical externships, core materials, and elective hours. All clinicals must be done on campus.

Once you have completed the course, you will be able to apply for certification in speech and language pathology or audiology. Even though all states require a license to practice, Speech-language pathologists do not need certification to work in Kentucky schools. You will be qualified to work with children, adults, and individuals who have speech and/or hearing problems due to trauma.

History & Traditions | Western Kentucky University (wku.edu)
WKU – Western Kentucky University
About WKU | Western Kentucky University
The 11 Best Online Speech-Language Pathology Masters Degree Programs 2019 – Early Childhood Education Degrees (early-childhood-education-degrees.com)
Master of Science in Speech-Language Pathology | Western Kentucky University (wku.edu)

6. University of Northern Colorado

Average Net Price: $14,230
School Type: Public, Non-Profit
School Accreditation: HLC
Acceptance Rate: 89%

The University of Northern Colorado, located in Greeley, Colorado, was founded in 1889 as the State Normal School. It is nestled between the Rocky Mountains and the breathtaking high Colorado mountains. The University of Northern Colorado strives to make students, staff and faculty feel welcome by providing thoughtful dialog and shared understanding.

The Speech-Language Pathology Master’s degree program has an on-campus and online format. Both offer excellent opportunities for skill development in evidence-based practice (EBP), clinical training, and professional mentoring.

The University of Northern Colorado’s three-year Master’s degree program is offered by the Audiology and Speech-Language Sciences (ASLS) program. This program is part of the College of Natural and Health Sciences. You will be part of a group of students going through the program together. For two weeks in the summer during the third semester, you will visit the Greeley campus to complete laboratory experiences.

Once you have completed the Speech-Language program online, the clinical fellowship, and pass the Praxis exam, you will be eligible to apply for the Certificate of Clinical Competence from the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association. An internship of eight weeks in public schools is required to be qualified for a license from the Colorado Department of Education.

With your certification and license, you can work in schools, rehabilitation centers, and hospitals. You can also work with doctors in the areas of neurology, otolaryngology, neurosurgery, and psychiatry. Working in private practice is also an option.

About the University of Northern Colorado (unco.edu)
Inclusivity (unco.edu)
Speech-Language Pathology (Master’s) – UNC Extended Campus (unco.edu)

7. University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire

Average Net Price: $15,673
School Type: Public, Non-Profit
School Accreditation: HLC
Acceptance Rate: 76%

The University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire was founded in the fall of 1916 located in Eau Claire, Wisconsin. There are bachelor’s and Master’s degree programs offered. The University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire was ranked #39 in the 2021 edition of Best Colleges in Regional Universities Midwest. It is well known for its year-round breathtaking campus.

The Speech Pathologist programs online at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire are for three years. You will be required to complete a short residency each summer, with the remainder of your clinic work being completed in your home community. You will obtain a variety of practicum and clinical experiences in communication sciences and disorders through the Center for Communication Disorders. Supervised by university personnel and on-site speech-language pathologists, you will work with clients of all ages with all types of communication problems. This will take place in clinics, schools, hospitals, or community agencies.

Once you have completed the online Master’s degree program, you have met the requirements for the Certificate of Clinical Competence in Speech-Language Pathology. Licensure in Speech-Language Pathology and licensure from Wisconsin’s Department of Public Instruction can also be obtained. Multiple employment options are open to you.

Campus History (uwec.edu)
University of Wisconsin–Eau Claire – Profile, Rankings and Data | US News Best Colleges
Communication Sciences and Disorders Masters Program | Speech Language Pathologist Degree (uwec.edu)

8. University of Akron

Average Net Price: $17,124
School Type: Public, Non-Profit
School Accreditation: HLC
Acceptance Rate: 93%

The University of Akron was founded in 1870 and known as Buchtel College. The name changed in 1913 to what it is now. It had very strong ties to the community and the Universalist Church. From 1913 to 1967 the University saw much expansion under its 10th President Dr. Norman P. Auburn. In 1967 he changed the University of Akron from a municipal to a state university.

U.S. News and World Report’s ranking of the MBA program puts it as one of the best part-time programs in the nation. The University of Akron has also been recognized by Guide to Online Schools for having the best online college for value in their Master’s of Speech-Pathology program in 2020.

The University of Akron partnered with the University of Cincinnati to offer an online program for Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology Master’s degree program. The program is 32 months long. Students take classes online at both universities. Twenty-two students are accepted at each university.

All classes are online, so you will not be required to attend any classes on campus. Clinicals are set up around your home and start the third semester of the program. The Speech-Pathology Master’s degree program is accredited by the Council on Academic Accreditation in Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association. With professional education and clinical training, you will be qualified to diagnose and treat many communication disorders in a variety of settings.

History of UA : The University of Akron (uakron.edu)
Rankings and Accreditation : The University of Akron (uakron.edu)
Master in Speech Language Pathology | 100% Online | The University Akron (uakron.edu)
General Information | The University Akron (uakron.edu)

9. James Madison University

Average Net Price: $21,281
School Type: Public, Non-Profit
School Accreditation: SACS COC
Acceptance Rate: 75%

James Madison University was founded in 1908 as State Normal and Industrial School for Women. It is in Shenandoah Valley in Virginia. In 1938 it was renamed Madison College to honor President James Madison. In 1977 the name changed to James Madison University.

According to U.S. News and World Report James Madison University ranks #2 for a public university in the south and #1 for the most innovative university in the south. It is ranked #1 for the best college for employment in Virginia by the U.S. Department of Education.

James Madison University’s online Speech Pathology Master’s degree program is structured to give a wide spectrum of academic and practicum experiences needed for the knowledge of specialists intending to work with individuals with communication and swallowing disorders. It is a part-time three-year program with students enrolling in 2-3 classes per semester.

Most of the program will be taken online. Your clinicals are scheduled during the summer months and available in settings such as hospitals, rehabilitation programs, and schools. The clinical qualifications are complied with in agreement with ASHA Guidelines for Clinical Certification and Virginia state licensure. Since 2013, James Madison University is the only institution in Virginia providing an online Master’s degree program.

James Madison University – About JMU
James Madison University – Speech-Language Pathology – Online (M.S.) Overview (jmu.edu)
JMU CSD Online M.S. in Speech-Language Pathology