Considering applying to graduate school?

Applying to graduate school can be one of the most exciting yet difficult things you will do as you prepare to become a speech-language pathologist or audiologist. We are fortunate in Arizona to have graduate training programs at all 5 of our higher ed institutions. We want to share some insight and information that might help you in your application process.

Disclaimer: The information on this page is not considered exhaustive and may not be the most recent information available at each institution. ArSHA does not take responsibility for out-of-date information, and instead encourages the reader to check with each individual institution’s website. Also, check with each institution for any special instructions or updates regarding COVID-19 and application requirements.

Preparing your application

  • Admission documents
    • GRE scores, resume, personal statement, transcript, letters of recommendation
  • Helpful experiences
    • Research
    • Volunteering/work-related experiences (e.g., working with adults or children with disabilities)
    • Observation/shadowing of SLPs in your areas of interest
  • Tips for applying
    • Submit transcripts as early as possible to ensure the school receives them on time
    • Ask for letters of recommendation from professors very early – give them several weeks’ notice and be sure to follow up. Professors are extremely busy and are asked by many students to write letters. Ensure strong letters by being engaged in class, attending office hours, earning strong grades, and always being kind and respectful.
    • Make a timeline and stick to it
    • Check which institutions use CSDCAS and be sure to check the deadlines for submission/verification.
  • Developing Your Personal Statement
    • This is your personal story and your opportunity to share who you are, what you want to do, and why you want to do it.
    • Back up your “why” with experiences (e.g., research, jobs, volunteering)
    • Personalize the statement to the university you are applying to. Why this university?
      • Are you interested in engaging in a research lab of a professor there?
      • Does the program have a specialty concentration (e.g., bilingual certificate)?
      • How will this program help you reach your long-term goals?
      • Location – is this somewhere you want to live and work in the future?
    • Length: ~1 page, but be sure to follow the requirements of essay prompt
    • Discuss what you bring to the program. Why should this university invest in your journey? How do you envision impacting the field of speech-language pathology or audiology?
    • Don’t feel your first draft is your final draft! It does not need to be perfect on the first try. Get out what you want to say then, edit-edit-EDIT!
    • Make sure that you are answering the question that is being asked
    • Avoid clichĂ© statements
    • Visit your college’s career center or seek out a writer’s workshop. Your college may have a free personal statement (and resume) review where you can receive feedback on the clarity and coherence of your writing.
  • Where should I apply?
    • Consider cost, location, and what the programs have to offer that is interesting to YOU!
    • Do they have online, summer, or academic year only classes?
    • Don’t feel pressured to apply to only Top 10, 50, 100 schools
    • Do they have TA/ GA positions? Or other financial aid opportunities?
    • Applying can be expensive. Set a budget considering your GRE tests, transcripts, application fees, etc.
    • Create an excel spreadsheet and include pros/cons of each school to assist your search and consideration of each university
    • Only apply to schools that you could actually *see* yourself going to.
  • If you are not accepted…
    • Don’t give up! You may want to:
      • Gain more experience in the field by working as an SLPA or related service provider
      • Consider retaking your GRE