The state of Ohio has a large number of speech pathology degrees available from a wide variety of universities. 12 different universities have programs accredited by the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA).
Three of them - University of Cincinnati, Ohio University, and Ohio State University - have the dual options of a Master's program and a Doctorate degree. There are also limited online opportunities for flexibility in gaining a license to become a specialist and assisting patients in recovering from speech and motor disorders.
Popular Ohio Cities with SLP Degrees
Columbus, Cleveland, and Cincinnati are popular destinations for speech-language pathology careers and educational opportunities. Cleveland has a few institutions that offer a Master's degree, which are Case Western Reserve University and Cleveland State University.
Many of the popular and most attended universities in the state offer an accredited program from the ASHA, adding in Miami University in Oxford, Bowling Green University, and the University of Akron - the latter having online options for coursework. There is a unique combination Doctorate in Audiology between the University of Akron and Kent State University.
Ohio State University - Master of Arts in Speech-Language Pathology
The Department of Speech and Hearing Science offers a Master of Arts in Speech-Language Pathology, which can be further specialized in the following categories: Aging, Applied Developmental Science in Education, Disability Studies, and Singing Health - the latter a unique concentration that helps professional singers, actors, and public speakers protect and heal their voices. An alternative to this approach is completing a thesis. Regardless of option, clinical seminars and practicum courses will need to be completed along with the core curriculum over a span of two years.
This program does not require clinical studies prior to admission, but prerequisites include a course that was completed in an undergraduate program in the following topics: phonetics, language development, speech science, language science, aural rehabilitation, and foundations of audiology. The school does have prerequisites courses available. Over the past three years, over 95 percent of students that have entered the program have completed the curriculum on time, all students have passed the Praxis examination, and over 97 percent have found employment within a year after graduation.
University of Akron - Master of Science in Speech-Language Pathology
There are two variations of this program that are offered either on-campus or online by the School of Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology. First, the traditional format requires 64 credit hours to complete over five semesters, which includes a summer term, and it can be finished within two years. Example courses that are taken include Cognitive Communicative Issues in Special Language, Neurogenic Speech and Language Disorders, Dysphagia, Theories and Therapies in Stuttering, and Clinical Issues in Child Language. Requirements to be administered into the program include holding an undergraduate degree that is related to the field, and students are only administered in the fall.
The online format is a combination effort between the University of Akron and the University of Cincinnati. Each university accepts 22 students each academic year in the winter and all courses are taken online. 74 credit hours are needed to finish this program, which culminates with an externship if not completed in the first year. While this university will accept students from all over the United States, the University of Cincinnati requires their students living within a three-mile radius. 400 clinical clock hours will be gained by taking this program, and students getting entry into the program will need a Bachelor's degree with at least a 3.0 cumulative GPA, and will need to submit GRE scores, updated resume, letters of recommendation, and official transcripts.
SLP Licensure in Ohio
The Ohio Speech and Hearing Professionals Board handles the licensing of speech-language pathologists in the state. A Master's degree will need to be held by those that are looking to gain licensure, with coursework that explores various speech and motor disorders. Practicums must log 400 hours of work experience, with the first 25 hours being in observation with a licensed professional. At least nine months of work will be done in a fellowship following graduation, and this will need to be signed off by a professional at the clinical location.
The national Praxis exam will also need to be completed with a passing score of 162 or higher. There are numerous testing locations available, including many of the institutional locations. Adding the Certification of Clinical Competence through the ASHA is not a requirement to gain licensure in the state, but can be obtained for further advantage in the job market or meeting requirements by some employers. The state license will need to be renewed every two years with at least 20 hours of continuing education accounted for.
Ohio SLP Career Options
Kettering Health Network is a massive health services not-for-profit organization in the state of Ohio that provides a number of health care needs for the community. The NeuroRehab and Balance Center is where they employ speech-language pathologists, and these professionals will help patients that deal with speech and language disorders due to stroke or injuries. Special techniques they use are VitalStim Therapy to fix swallowing issues and facial paralysis, and the Lee Silverman Voice Treatment is given to patients that are dealing with Parkinson’s disease.
Akron Children’s Hospital is one of the largest pediatric health care centers in the state and has more of a focus on the development of children with speech and swallowing issues, be it receptive delays, vocal cord problems, or stuttering. There are many specialty programs in place that SLP professionals can get into, such as the Autism Diagnostic Clinic, Down Syndrome Program, and Head Injury Clinic. The hospital also provides in-home therapy for more customized and one-on-one sessions with their patients.