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Double Major or Minor to Complement Major?

ctnerd2000ctnerd2000 1 replies1 threads New Member
Hi all,
I'm currently a junior in HS and thinking of pursuing a degree in speech language pathology with the goal of becoming an slp. As an undergrad, I will major in whatever major will prepare me for the graduate program. My question is, would it be a good idea to double major or minor to complement the slp major? Something like sign language or a second language? I live in MA, if that makes a difference.
My goal would be to work with kids to adolescents, maybe adults. Not sure about geriatrics, however.

Any help would be appreciated!
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Replies to: Double Major or Minor to Complement Major?

  • juilletjuillet 12812 replies164 threads Super Moderator
    You can major in anything to be a speech-language pathologist. SLP usually isn't an undergraduate major; a common undergrad major is communication disorders, but there are a lot of other things you can major in and go to school for SLP. Most programs simply require that you have broad coursework across the life/biological sciences, social/behavioral sciences, physics & chemistry, and a course in statistics. (There are a few programs, like Boston University, that require courses that you would only get by majoring in communication disorders as an undergrad).

    You can minor in pretty much anything - your minor probably wouldn't really have any bearing on getting into graduate school. However, there are certain majors that might complement well. Bilingual SLPs are in pretty high demand so majoring or minoring in a language and becoming fluent in it - fluent enough that you could conduct therapy in the language - would be good. ASL could be a good major or minor if you were planning to do speech therapy with children with hearing impairments or who were deaf/Deaf, but keep in mind that a lot of colleges don't offer ASL classes (or don't have a robust enough ASL curriculum for you to attain fluency. Actually, in my experience the college most likely to offer ASL are community colleges; many of them offer ASL certificates and ASL interpreter certificates). Psychology could also be a decent complementary major or minor.

    A close friend of mine is a bilingual SLP in NYC schools. She double majored in communication disorders and Black studies in undergrad; she's bilingual because she's Dominican and grew up speaking Spanish and English in her household.
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  • Nutella544Nutella544 26 replies0 threads Junior Member
    This isn't actually true. Unlike most advanced health careers, which simply need the science core, a speech pathology masters requires several courses in speech/hearing and linguistics. The UG major would be something like "Speech science" or "Speech/language/hearing". You can indeed do a pre-speech year after college, but, if you already know that this is what you'd like to study, it would probably be better to go to a school which does indeed have an MS program. You may even be able to go to a school with a 5 year BS/MS program. Most colleges with speech pathology program offer ASL courses and usually count it toward the major. If you want to use it as an SLP, you would probably be able to do fieldwork at a Deaf school, both as an undergrad and during grad school, where you can work on your fluency.
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  • ctnerd2000ctnerd2000 1 replies1 threads New Member
    @juillet @Nutella544 Thanks so much for your advice! It was very insightful!
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  • juilletjuillet 12812 replies164 threads Super Moderator
    This isn't actually true. Unlike most advanced health careers, which simply need the science core, a speech pathology masters requires several courses in speech/hearing and linguistics.

    Let me amend my statement a bit. I actually looked at several SLP master's programs before I answered this question. Many (most?) of them require some prerequisite coursework in speech/hearing/communication sciences and linguistics, but the majority do not require a major in speech/hearing/communication sciences or linguistics. Generally the required coursework seems to be about 9-15 hours' worth, depending on the program. Some of them don't seem to require any specific undergraduate coursework other than some life/natural sciences coursework and some behavioral/social sciences coursework.

    My friend who is an SLP was actually one of the few communication sciences majors in her program. She said she felt like it gave her an advantage in the program because she had some knowledge of things ahead of time and wasn't starting from scratch.
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