Communication disorders include stuttering, articulation, fluency, and difficulty swallowing. They can be the result of neurological or physical problems. Professionals in this field work with patients to overcome these disorders. To effectively help these patients, you need a high-quality, advanced education, though degrees in communication disorders are offered at every level.
Online Associate Degree Programs for Communication Disorders
Most associate degree programs in communication disorders are offered at a traditional campus, rather than online. These programs will require you to complete a certain number of general education courses, usually about half, with the rest of your courses pertaining to communication disorders. For example, the curriculum for the communication disorders associate degree program at Williston State College, part of the North Dakota University System, includes classes in Developmental Psychology, Cultural Diversity, and American Sign Language as an optional course. These programs are designed to prepare you for more advanced degrees in communication disorders.
Online Bachelor’s Degree Programs for Communication Disorders
Many online communication disorders bachelor’s degree programs are hybrid programs, offering some courses online, and the rest on campus. Many of these programs are designed to prepare you for a graduate degree program. The courses will cover topics such as articulation, voice, hearing, fluency, and swallowing. An example of the courses you may have to take can be found in the curriculum for the bachelor’s degree program in communication disorders offered at Eastern New Mexico University. These courses include Phonetics, Speech and Language Assessment, Speech Science, and Neuroscience of Communication.
Online Master’s Degree Programs for Communication Disorders
Online communication disorders master’s degree programs are typically two-year programs for full-time students. As a prerequisite, most of these programs require you to hold a bachelor’s degree in communication disorders or a related field from an accredited institution. Your courses will be advanced and cover the various aspects of communication disorders. For example, the curriculum for the accredited online master’s degree program in communication disorders at Western Kentucky University includes Advanced Alternative and Augmentative Communication Modalities, Motor Speech Disorders, Cognitive Linguistic Disorders, and Dysfluency. Many of these programs also require that students complete an internship prior to graduation, allowing them to gain hands-on training in the field.
Online Doctoral Degree Programs for Communication Disorders
Doctoral degree programs in communication disorders online may be difficult to find, since the majority of these programs are currently offered at traditional campuses. Many of these programs require applicants to hold a master’s degree in communication disorders from an accredited institution before being admitted into the doctoral program. Your studies in one of these programs will require you to complete highly-advanced courses covering various areas of communication disorders. For example, the curriculum for the Ph.D. in Communication Sciences and Disorders program at the University of North Dakota includes such classes as Investigations in Child Language, Advanced Management of Articulation and Phonological Disorders, and Research Design in Speech and Hearing Sciences.
Online Degree Programs in Communication Disorders in the Work Place
Graduates may use their bachelor’s and master’s degree towards a career in education, helping young students overcome their communication disorders. A doctoral degree may also be used to become a professor at a four-year institution, educating communication disorders students. Though the majority of graduates use their online accredited master’s degree toward a career as a speech-language pathologist. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), speech-language pathologists work with patients to treat any disorders they may have with communication or swallowing. The BLS shows that they are expected to see a 23% growth in employment, and they earn a median annual income of $66,920. Job availability and what you earn will also depend on several factors, such as your employer, location, and amount of professional experience.