CSD Undergraduate Program

What is the study of Communication Sciences and Disorders?

Communication Sciences and Disorders includes two disciplines, speech-language pathology and audiology, which have developed out of a concern for people with communication disorders. The academic and clinical curriculum at the undergraduate level includes a wide range of courses and clinical practicum opportunities. Students learn about both normal and disordered communication processes.  They also have many opportunities to observe and participate in the assessment and treatment of clients who are served in our CSD clinics. The undergraduate CSD major prepares students to pursue a graduate degree.  A master’s degree in speech-language pathology and a clinical doctorate in audiology are required to engage in professional practice. 

Why should I consider a Communication Sciences and Disorders Major?

Many people easily talk with family, friends, and colleagues everyday.   Although we often take language, speech, and hearing for granted, these processes are extraordinarily complex.  Furthermore, anyone at any age can be affected by illness or injury that will impair the ability to talk or hear.  In fact, one out of every six Americans has a communication disorder.  Each one can be helped in some way by a speech-language pathologist, audiologist, or speech, language, and hearing scientist.  

Grounded in the latest scientific theories and research, CSD students learn to assess and treat persons with communication disorders—from infants to the elderly.  In labs students have access to state-of-the-art equipment and analysis procedures as they study sound, speech, language, and hearing.  Speech-language pathologists and audiologists make a positive contribution to people’s lives.  With the changing makeup of our population comes the need for speech-language-hearing professionals who are skilled in working in a complex and diverse society.  For people with the proper education and flexibility, employment prospects are excellent.  Opportunities and challenges await you!

Click on the following link to read recent articles about job opportunities for speech-language pathologistsand job opportunities for audiologists.

Frequently Asked Questions - The most frequently asked questions are answered here, starting with information for prospective students, and continuing with students through their senior year at Western.

Undergraduate courses and requirements

The following link takes you to a current advising guide. Here you will find a brief description of CSD major and minor requirements. We also list the courses and provide a copy of the lockstep sequence of course scheduling for your junior and senior years.

PDF iconUndergraduate Lockstep 2016-18

Students interested in continuing on to graduate school in either audiology or speech language pathology are encouraged to enroll in at least one course in each of the following areas in order to meet ASHA certification requirements: 1) biological sciences, 2) social/behavioral sciences, 3) physics or chemistry, and 4) statistics.  Please visit ASHA's website for examples of course content areas.

CSD waiting list policy:

The Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders reserves the right to manage its wait lists to give priority to students who must take the courses to be on track with the lockstep program and satisfy major requirements.

Need help or information?

You can reach our advisors by email or by making an appointment. If you're on campus, drop by the Academic Instruction Center east wing, AI 394, and talk with Karen Peila, our department manager. She will guide you in arranging an appointment with the appropriate advisor.

Transfer Advising

Dr. David Evans
Assistant Professor
Western Washington University
Academic Instructional Center
Room AI 376, Mailstop 9171
Bellingham WA 98225
360-650-3206
David.Evans@wwu.edu

All Other Advising:

Dr. David Evans
Assistant Professor
Western Washington University
Academic Instructional Center
Room AI 376, Mailstop 9171
Bellingham WA 98225
360-650-3206
David.Evans@wwu.edu

 

Dr. Rieko Darling
Associate Professor
Western Washington University
Academic Instructional Center
Room AI 372, Mailstop 9171
Bellingham WA 98225
360-650-3143
Rieko.Darling@wwu.edu

 

Dr. Michael Fraas
Associate Professor
Western Washington University
Academic Instructional Center
Room AI 374, Mailstop 9171
Bellingham WA 98225
360-650-7536
Michael.Fraas@wwu.edu

Applying for Graduation

To apply for graduation:

  • Go to the Registrar's Office homepage at: http://www.wwu.edu/depts/registrar/
  • Click on Bachelor’s Degree Information in the left-hand column, click on Degree Application. 
  • Click on Degree Application Form. If you have already submitted the Degree Application and are changing your quarter of graduation, click on Reapplication Form. 
  • Complete the form online, print the form and return it to the Registrar's Office with the required documentation. (The major and minor evaluation forms which the department completes are there as well.)