Online Bachelor’s in Communication Sciences and Disorders Curriculum

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Coursework for an online bachelor’s degree in communication sciences and disorders covers topics such as normal speech and language development, as well as speech pathology.

If you want to help people cope with or get past speech disorders, you might be interested in earning your online Bachelor of Science in Communication Sciences and Disorders. This program’s curriculum covers topics related to the science behind speech-language disorders, and it can help you learn how to treat them.

Your online communication sciences and disorders degree can help you begin the process of earning formal certification as you work toward becoming a speech-language pathologist or audiologist. Throughout the degree program, you can acquire knowledge through instruction while also experiencing simulated practical application, which can prepare you to earn your license to practice professionally.

These skills can help speech-language pathologists and audiologists excel in their field and treat people as effectively as possible, whether they find employment in medical facilities, private practice, or education.

Already have a bachelor’s degree in a different subject? We have you covered. Our 100% online Post-Baccalaureate Certificate in Communication Sciences and Disorders can prepare you to pursue your master’s degree in speech-language pathology or audiology without having to earn another full bachelor’s degree. This certificate program is designed to help you bridge the gap between your undergraduate education and graduate-level studies in just 47 credit hours.

Maryville University Online BS in Communication Sciences and Disorders

Maryville’s online Bachelor of Science in Communication Sciences and Disorders comprises 128 credit hours and includes general education, general electives, and your communication sciences and disorders major. The curriculum also includes additional courses in healthcare and education that may not be listed below. The BS in Communication Sciences and Disorders can build the skills you need to help patients across all life stages develop or regain their ability to communicate. This degree is the foundation that can start your path toward community advocacy.

Core Major Courses

CMSD 100Introduction to Communication Disorders3 Credits
CMSD 210Phonetics3 Credits
CMSD 220Speech and Hearing Science3 Credits
CMSD 310Anatomy and Physiology of Speech3 Credits
CMSD 330Language and Speech Acquisition3 Credits
CMSD 350Speech Development and Disorders3 Credits
CMSD 360Language Development and Disorders3 Credits
CMSD 410Clinical Methods and Management3 Credits
CMSD 440Audiology3 Credits
CMSD 470Aural Rehabilitation3 Credits
CMSD 480Neurological Basis of Communication Disorders3 Credits
CMSD 485Advanced Speech Pathology3 Credits
CMSD 490Capstone/Clinic Experience in Communication Disorders 13 Credits
CMSD 495Capstone/Clinic Experience in Communication Disorders 23 Credits

Natural Sciences & Quantitative Reasoning

BIOL 101Anatomy & Physiology I4 Credits
BIOL 102Anatomy & Physiology II4 Credits
SOSC 341Understanding Statistical Inference3 Credits
PHYS 120The Physics of Light and Sound Waves 3 Credits
CHEM 120General, Organic and Biological Chemistry3 Credits


EDUC 352Education/Psychology of Exceptional Children3 Credits
EDUC 322Literacy for the SLP3 Credits


HEPR 109Healthcare Management Terminology3 Credits
HEPR 300Cultural Diversity in Health and Illness3 Credits
HEPR 355Counseling Skills for Healthcare Professionals3 Credits

To ensure the best possible educational experience for our students, we may update our curriculum to reflect emerging and changing employer and industry trends. Professional licensure and certification regulations vary from jurisdiction to jurisdiction. Students are encouraged to visit the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA) for the state in which they intend to practice to verify specific licensure requirements which include ensuring the program of interest meets the licensure requirements prior to enrolling. Students may visit the professional licensure page or reach out to our team of enrollment advisors for guidance.

Obtaining SLPA licensure or certification in any state is not guaranteed, students need to research their state’s specific licensing requirements. 

Undergraduate programs and certificates are designed to be taken at a part-time pace. Please speak to your advisor for more details.

Students are required to complete 2 consecutive capstone courses which will need to incorporate direct (in-person) clinical field work. For more information about clinical fieldwork requirements, talk to an advisor. 

Ready for your next step?

What are some common skills and competencies taught in a communication sciences and disorders curriculum?

The communication sciences and disorders curriculum is designed to help you build a working knowledge of the requirements for a career in speech-language pathology or audiology, as well as gain important skills and competencies that can help you in various life and work situations.

Pursuing your B.S. in Communication Sciences and Disorders can help you gain skills and knowledge in:

  • Speech-language pathology (SLP). Most speech-language pathologists are required to hold at least a graduate degree. But before attending a master’s program, you can build your foundation in the diagnosis and treatment of a variety of speech and swallowing disorders, allowing you to pursue additional studies with confidence. Graduating with your bachelor’s degree also can qualify you to work as a speech-language pathologist assistant.
  • Audiology. Whereas speech-language pathologists assist patients who have difficulty communicating, audiologists support those who have hearing loss. Because balance is impacted by the health of the inner ear, audiologists also treat patients with vertigo. Becoming an audiologist requires many years of advanced study; however, a B.S. in Communication Sciences and Disorders is an ideal place for you to start.
  • Current best practices. You can gain knowledge of, and virtual firsthand experience with, the current technology used to help those with varying degrees of speech, language development, and audiology needs. Your B.S. in Communication Sciences and Disorders can help keep you up to date, so you know how and where to access relevant information to serve future clients.
  • SLPA licensure requirements. Many people choose the fields of speech-language pathology or audiology because they have a deep desire to assist those who struggle to communicate or hear. When you earn your online communication sciences and disorders degree, you receive the firsthand experience and resources necessary to prepare you to apply for a license to become a speech-language pathologist assistant (SLPA). This means you can intern or work alongside SLP professionals.
  • Project-based and experiential learning. Project-based learning helps you retain the information you are learning, leading to a better real-world application. This “learning by doing” approach is an important component of studying speech pathology and related areas. It can help you build not only textbook knowledge but also the know-how to apply what you’ve studied in actual client-practitioner settings with confidence.
  • Critical thinking. By learning to recognize, diagnose, and treat a wide variety of communication disorders, you can practice and build stronger problem-solving and analytical skills. Critical thinking skills are also important in helping you apply the scientific method and other critical approaches to challenges and scenarios you encounter.
  • Patience and communication. Learn how to identify communication abnormalities, as well as how to communicate your findings to peers and clients. This valuable skill empowers you to build strong relationships with your patients.

What are some common communication sciences and disorders curriculum courses?

Courses taken for this degree vary depending on the university. At Maryville University, our online degree program can help you build your communication sciences and disorders expertise through the following classes, among others:

  • Introduction to Communication Disorders. This course covers the normal development of speech, language, and hearing, along with how an impairment can affect a person’s well-being and lifespan. Specific disorders are introduced, along with intervention strategies particular to each disorder.
  • Phonetics. By studying phonetics, you can learn the basics of American English sounds, along with regional and social dialects, and how to transcribe them using the International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA). You can also become familiar with the clinical processes for treating articulation and phonological disorders.
  • Speech and Hearing Science. As you complete this course, you can build your skills in identifying the science behind both the diagnosis of speech-language disorders and the methods used to treat them. This includes a foundational understanding of the typical tools used to measure speech.
  • Language Development and Disorders. Learning how language develops normally and how to identify abnormal development is important for any communication major. When you earn this degree online with Maryville, you can take a deeper look at impairment in areas like phonology, morphology, and semantics. Additionally, you can learn to apply the knowledge you’ve gained to assess and treat different communication disorders. Discover the invaluable role of a speech-language pathologist in bridging the gap between language and literacy.

Learn more about the communication sciences and disorders curriculum.

A career in speech-language pathology or audiology begins with a basic understanding of speech and hearing sciences, language development, and methods for treating common disorders.

The broad knowledge base and hands-on opportunities offered in our communication sciences and disorders curriculum can give you the training and experience needed for the next phase of higher learning.

From the phonetic alphabet to the science behind speech disorders, online coursework coupled with simulated hands-on experience can help you build a solid foundation for future graduate studies.

Want to learn more? Explore how our online Bachelor of Science in Communication Sciences and Disorders can help you pursue a career in communication sciences and disorders.