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Why study speech language pathology?

Study speech language pathology at the University of Sydney

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Overview

Transform lives through high quality healthcare. The Master of Speech Language Pathology (MSLP) prepares you for professional practice as a speech pathologist, developing the skills to assess and treat people of all ages, backgrounds and cultures, and change lives by making it easier for people to communicate.

One in seven Australians have some form of communication disability, such as a problem with speech, using and/or understanding language, voice, fluency, hearing or reading and writing. As a speech pathology student, you will learn to work with children and adults with such communication and speech difficulties, as well as those clients who have swallowing difficulties or need alternative ways to communicate.

During this two-year degree, you will learn from leading experts in a curriculum that has been specifically designed to enable students to learn in a way that resembles the clinical practice of speech therapy. Case-based learning underpins this program and is complemented by extensive clinical placements which provide hands-on experience with real clients in a supervised environment.

The Master of Speech Language Pathology is a graduate entry program designed to accommodate all suitably qualified candidates regardless of their previous discipline. Accredited by Speech Pathology Australia, graduates are eligible for practising membership of the association, which is a requirement to work as a speech pathologist in Australia. A career in speech pathology gives you the rewarding opportunity to work across hospitals, private practice, schools and early childhood services.

Why study with us?

  • You'll gain real-world, hands-on training through clinical placements within our extensive network of clinical partners.
  • You'll learn from highly respected practitioners, clinicians and researchers.
  • Our research ranks "well above world class" (Excellence in Research for Australia level 5).
  • We offer a range of leadership and student support programs to give you the best possible opportunity for success.
  • We have world-class facilities, with purpose-built laboratories and on-site health clinics. 
  • In 2021, we will move to the purpose-built Health Precinct at Camperdown campus, which will for the first time bring multiple health disciplines together in a facility that translates research into education and clinical services.

Learn more about studying health sciences at Sydney. 

Commonwealth Supported Places (CSP) are available for this course for eligible domestic students. This means that your course fees are subsidised by the Australian Government and you pay a student contribution amount (SCA). CSP places are limited in number and are allocated based on academic merit.

Subject areas

There are no specialisations for this course.

Shared pool

Entry, fees, funding & how to apply

Depends on your qualification, citizenship status
The details on this page based on your selections are a guide only, and are subject to change.

Your admission criteria

English language proficiency

Find out if you need to prove English language proficiency (depends on your country of origin and educational background).

For academic requirements check the ‘Admission requirements’ section on this page.

Your fee

How to apply

You can apply online via the application portal. When you are ready to apply, select the ‘Apply’ button on this course page. Visit the How to apply page for other important information. 

Application dates 

Applications open - 1 July of the preceding year

Applications close - 31 October of the preceding year

Early offers: A small number of offers released to applicants with high academic merit

Main offers released: December - January

We strongly encourage applicants to apply as early as possible, offers are made on a rolling basis and places are limited. Separate scholarship deadlines apply - check the scholarships website for details.

Starting date

Semester 1 (March)

You can apply online via the application portal. When you are ready to apply, select the ‘Apply’ button on this course page. Visit the How to apply page for other important information. 

Application dates

Applications open - 15 March of the preceding year

Applications close - 31 October of the preceding year

Offers released: Offers are made throughout the year based on academic merit and subject to availability in the program

We strongly encourage international applicants to apply as early as possible to allow time for visa and travel arrangements. Separate scholarship deadlines may apply - check the scholarships website for details.

Starting date

Semester 1 (March)

What you'll study

You will follow a prescribed course of study with a total of 96 credit points, including clinical placements from year 1 .  

Year 1

  • Language 1: Developmental Disorder
  • Speech 1: Phonological Impairment
  • Voice and Resonance Impairment
  • Clinical Practice 1 & 2
  • Language 2: Literacy and Language
  • Speech 2: Stuttering and Motor Speech
  • Feeding and Swallowing Across the Lifespan

Year 2 

  • Audiology and Aural Habilitation
  • Functional Communication in Disability
  • Clinical Practice 3
  • Language 3 Aphasia and Cognitive Impairment
  • Interdisciplinary Practice: Complex Cases
  • Clinical Practice 4 - Adult
  • Clinical Practice 4 - Child
  • SLP Clinical Research and Leadership

Units of study

Work component

Mandatory work component = 744 hours.

This translates to 32.4 hours per week.

This mandatory work component must be completed as part of the award requirements for the course.

Progression rules

The Master of Speech Language Pathology requires the completion of complete 96 credit points of core units of study.

Capstone experience

A number of clinical and professional fieldwork opportunities are scheduled as part of the course. Fieldwork provides hands on experience with real clients in a supervised environment allowing students to combine academic study with the practical abilities required of the Speech Pathology profession.

As part of this course eligible students also have the opportunity to take part in the ‘FHS Abroad' program which involves academic study and a 4-6 week placement with non-government organisations and other development agencies in one of a small number of countries in South and South East Asia. This experience (valued at 6 credit points) enables students to gain a real understanding of global health and make a lasting difference to communities worldwide.

Admission criteria

To be eligible to apply you will need to fulfil the following criteria:

  1. An Australian bachelor's degree, master's or PhD from an Australian institution or equivalent.
  2. A minimum GPA of 4.5 out of 7.0 which is an approximate Weighted Average Mark (WAM) of 60 percent. This does not guarantee an offer as the places are limited and offers are made based on academic merit.

This course has assumed knowledge requirements

All offer holders will be given access to online modules that cover the assumed knowledge requirements listed below. The modules are offered from mid October to March. 

When you commence your studies in the Master of Speech Language Pathology, it will be assumed that you have reached a certain level of knowledge or skills in four areas of assumed knowledge. The four areas of assumed knowledge are:

  1. Linguistics. Phonology, morphology, semantics discourse, grammar/syntax, orthography, sociolinguistic, and psycholinguistic models of language. 
  2. Phonetics. Be able to correctly transcribe in real-time broad (phonemic) transcription of adult and child English using the International Phonetics Alphabet and appropriate diacritics for clinical evaluation. In addition, the theoretical concepts of allophones, distinctive feature analysis, diacritics, stress, accent, suprasegmental aspects of speech, and the acoustic features of vowels and consonants.
  3. Functional Anatomy of the Speech System. Anatomy of the head and neck including those necessary for speech, swallowing, respiration and hearing. The following areas of the human body should be studied - bones of the head, auditory system, neck, and torso as well as the joints, muscles and nerves of the brain, head, face, larynx, pharynx, and respiratory systems.
  4. Functional Neurology of the Speech System. Functional anatomy and physiology of neural structures as well as fundamental concepts of nervous system function necessary for speech, language, hearing, and swallowing.

If you do not have the assumed knowledge for the Master of Speech Language Pathology, the University strongly recommends that you do not commence the degree until you have undertaken studies in these areas.

Assumed knowledge requirements document: Please read this document carefully for a detailed outline of knowledge, practical skills required in each area and examples of units which meet the assumed knowledge requirements.

Admission process

Download the graduate entry masters admissions guide (pdf, 180KB) for more information on the admissions process for domestic and international applicants.

Inherent Requirements

Inherent requirements are the essential tasks and activities necessary to be able to achieve the core learning outcomes of a course. They are specific to a particular course or discipline. To assist students to make informed choices about their study, we have identified and set out the inherent requirements for this course.

The academic criteria are updated annually in October and may be changed without notice. The Handbooks Online is the official legal source of information relating to study at the University of Sydney.

Professional accreditation

 

Speech Pathology programs are accredited by Speech Pathology Australia to ensure that the professional practice requirements of the profession are incorporated into courses and standards are maintained. Accreditation qualifies graduates to work as speech pathologists in Australia.

The Master of Speech Language Pathology has been continuously accredited and is accredited until the end of 2023.

More information about accreditation can be obtained from Speech Pathology Australia.

 

Future study options

Eligible graduates may consider an additional three years of study with us as a research candidate for the higher research degree of Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) . The PhD is designed to provide you with the opportunity to undertake in-depth study in a specialised area under the supervision of an academic staff member with expertise in your field of research. The award of the degree in the health sciences will enhance your profile as a genuine researcher and expert in your chosen field, afford opportunities as a published researcher, and may lead to an academic appointment, or to a research appointment with a government or industrial research and development organisation.

Career Pathways

Graduates of the Master of Speech Language Pathology are qualified to work with children and adults experiencing communication difficulties. These communication difficulties may include problems with speaking, understanding what people say, reading, writing, voice problems and stuttering. Speech pathologists also work with children and adults who have swallowing difficulties or need alternative ways to communicate.  

News_

How I changed careers and became a speech pathologist

From languages and marketing to a career in health

Stuck in jobs they didn’t love, Emma and Natasha made the tough decision to go back to study. Now speech pathologists, they reflect on how they overcame their fears to find meaning in their work.

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