25 Best Master's in Speech Pathology Schools 2020

By the GradReports team | Updated April 1, 2020
Ranking Badge

These are the best 25 schools that offer a master's degree in speech pathology, based on median salary one year after graduation. University of the Pacific is ranked #1 with a median starting salary of $69,800. Graduates of the speech-language pathology program at California State University-Fresno had the lowest median debt, amounting to $28,071. Median salaries for the top 25 schools range from $61,900-$69,800.

Tuition, median salaries, and median debt were reported by the U.S. Department of Education. View our methodology for more details about these rankings or read more about the top-ranked schools.

Salary and debt data reported by the U.S. Department of Education
Salary and debt data reported by the U.S. Department of Education
Rank School Annual Tuition Median Debt Median Salary
#1 #1 $47,952 $88,016 $69,800
#2 #2 $17,921 $41,000 $68,700
#3 #3 $17,824 $30,000 $68,100
#4 #4 $17,525 $28,071 $68,000
#5 #5 $18,426 $35,761 $67,700
#6 #6 $17,736 $41,000 $67,400
#7 #7 $29,372 $55,410 $67,100
#8 #8 $18,198 $37,697 $66,100
#9 #9 $23,138 $77,750 $65,800
#10 #10 $20,400 $29,260 $65,600
#11 #11 $21,552 $51,250 $65,300
#12 #12 $17,831 $53,985 $65,200
#13 #13 $20,050 $41,000 $65,000
#14 #14 $18,546 $30,000 $64,900
#15 #15 $17,142 $44,352 $64,900
#16 #16 $14,878 $29,664 $64,400
#17 #17 $18,248 $33,428 $64,100
#18 #18 $40,156 $108,349 $64,100
#19 #19 $14,808 $36,543 $63,400
#20 #20 $14,347 $36,138 $63,300
#21 #21 $30,834 $86,000 $62,900
#22 #22 $20,658 $41,000 $62,400
#23 #23 $12,368 $41,000 $62,000
#24 #24 $20,228 Not Reported $62,000
#25 #25 $39,272 $40,723 $61,900

2020 Best Master's Program Highlights

Median Debt
$88,016
Median Salary
$69,800

The Master of Science in Speech-Language Pathology degree at the University of the Pacific is offered through the Thomas J. Long School of Pharmacy and Health Sciences. The degree is offered with two options for completion: a 4 semester, 15 month program for students with an undergraduate degree in speech-language pathology, and a 6 semester, 24 month program for students with non-speech-language pathology baccalaureate degrees.

This program meets requirements for the following credentials: the Certificate of Clinical Competence in Speech-Language Pathology through the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association; California state licensure in Speech-Language Pathology through the California Department of Consumer Affairs; and the California Speech-Language Pathology Services Credential through the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing. 

Students can satisfy requirements for clinical experience through internships at the on-campus Pacific Speech, Hearing and Language Center and the nearby RiteCare Childhood Language Center of Stockton. Student clinicians collectively see over 100 clients per week and are supervised by nationally-certified speech-language pathologists and audiologists. 

The Master of Science in Speech-Language Pathology’s curriculum includes content like Anatomy and Physiology of Speech, Phonetics, Diagnostics, Audiology, Multicultural Populations, Dysphagia/Swallowing Disorders, Cleft Palate and Syndromes, Managed Care, Autism Spectrum Disorders, Public School Issues, Assessment Procedures, and much more. 

The University of the Pacific was founded in 1851 and is the oldest chartered university in California. They have three distinct campuses, with this program residing at their Stockton, California campus. 

Visit University of the Pacific's website.

Median Debt
$41,000
Median Salary
$68,700

The University of California, East Bay, also known as Cal State East Bay, offers a Master of Science in Speech-Language Pathology through their Department of Speech, Language and Hearing Sciences. The program is designed to prepare students for California state licensure, national certification, and the Speech-Language-Hearing Services credential for school settings.

Students are able to observe, receive training, and do research at Cal State East Bay’s on-campus speech, language, and hearing clinic, or off-site at institutions like hospitals, rehabilitation facilities, schools, and clinics. Graduates can expect to gain skills in screening, assessing, and treating communication, cognition, and swallowing across the lifespan; evaluating, integrating, and applying scientific evidence, clinical expertise, and client values for optimal service delivery; and demonstrating a commitment to cultural competence, among other skills. 

The program consists of 66-68 total credits, including 46 credits of required core courses, 20 units of clinical practicum, and 0-2 credits of either the Master’s Comprehensive exam or the oral presentation of a finished thesis or project. Required Core Courses include curriculum like Assessment and Treatment of Child Language Disorders, Adult Neurogenic Disorders of Language and Cognition, Augmentative and Alternative Communication, Advanced Seminar on Cultural and Linguistic Diversity, Research Methods and Evidence-based Practice, and more. 

Cal State East Bay was originally named the State College for Alameda County at its founding in 1957. Changing names a few times through the 60s and 70s, the university became California State University-East Bay in 2005. The university’s main campus is located in Hayward, California. 

Visit California State University-East Bay's website.

Median Debt
$30,000
Median Salary
$68,100

California State University, Fullerton’s Master of Arts in Communication Sciences and Disorders (CSD) program provides the foundation for a career as a speech-language pathologist. The program offers a curriculum in all areas of communication disorders, such as multicultural issues, autism, augmentative and alternative communication, in addition to elective courses such as communication and aging, counseling skills in communication disorders, and advanced neurological and cognitive disorders. 

The CSD program consists of 30 credits total, which combines 24 required credits and 6 elective credits. Examples of required courses are Research in Communication Sciences and Disorders; Neurologic and Clinical Aspects of Speech, Language, and Cognition; and Seminar in Child Language Disorders. Comprehensive exams are required for 10 areas throughout the course of the program. 

The program distinguishes itself by highlighting its community-based professional connections. In addition to the campus' Speech and Hearing Clinic, there is an off-campus clinical program for graduate students that offers opportunities for teaching, service, and research experiences in over thirty hospitals, clinics, rehabilitative agencies, schools, and private practices. Campus-based clinics offer the following areas in which students can complete supervised practicum: child, adult, audiology, aural rehabilitation, multicultural, school, and medical setting.  

California State University, Fullerton’s main campus is 241 acres and is surrounded by suburban neighborhoods and other educational institutions. It was founded in 1957, and incorporated into the California State University system in 1972.

Visit California State University-Fullerton's website.

Median Debt
$28,071
Median Salary
$68,000

California State University, Fresno, also known as Fresno State, offers a Master of Arts in Speech-Language Pathology housed in the university’s Department of Communicative Sciences & Deaf Studies. The master's program is 36 credits and takes two years of full-time study to complete.

Students are required to complete at least 400 supervised clinical practicum hours, gained at the University Speech and Hearing Clinic, and in at least two other settings such as an internship, student teaching, or residency program. Students are required to complete their final student teaching and internship within the last two semesters of the program and within the last 12 credits of coursework. All Fresno State graduate students are required to complete a Culminating Experience, consisting of either a thesis, project, or comprehensive written exam. 

This program fulfills requirements for the following credentials: Speech-Language Pathology Services Credential, Certificate of Clinical Competence (CCC) in Speech Pathology, and the California State license from the California Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology and Hearing Aid Dispensers Board. 

California State University, Fresno opened in 1911 as a teacher’s college and was brought into the California State University system in 1972. It’s located in the richly diverse central California city of Fresno. 

Visit California State University-Fresno's website.

Median Debt
$35,761
Median Salary
$67,700

San Diego State University offers a Master of Arts in Speech, Language, and Hearing Sciences with one concentration: clinical Speech-Language Pathology. The program begins each Fall term, and the curriculum is completed over five semesters. The clinical Speech-Language Pathology concentration is full-time and intensive, taking two academic years to complete. Students must complete a minimum of 45 academic credits and 19 clinical practicum credits, in addition to either a thesis or a written comprehensive examination. 

The M.A. in Speech, Language, and Hearing Sciences has a clinical focus and may be used to satisfy preparation for the following credentials: the Certificate of Clinical Competence in Speech-Language Pathology from the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA); the Speech-Language Pathology Credential from the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing; and licensure from the State of California. 

This concentration is designed to provide students with the opportunity to complete coursework in all of the following areas: articulation, fluency, voice and resonance, receptive and expressive language, hearing, swallowing, cognitive and social aspects of communication, and augmentative and alternative communication modalities. The curriculum includes courses like Research Methods in Communication Sciences and Disorders, Voice, Resonance, and Fluency Disorders, Diagnostic Methods in Speech-Language Pathology, Pediatric Speech-Language Pathology, and Clinical Practice in Public Schools. 

This program also offers the option to specialize in bilingualism for students able to pass a language proficiency test in a language other than English. Students accepted to this specialization are eligible for the Certificate in Bilingual Speech-Language Pathology, designed for graduates planning to work with bilingual Spanish-English speakers.

San Diego State University was founded in 1897 as a training school for elementary school teachers. It expanded through the 1900s and was integrated into the California State University system in 1960. The school’s main campus is located within 15 minutes of downtown San Diego, California. 

Visit San Diego State University's website.

Median Debt
$41,000
Median Salary
$67,400
Median Debt
$55,410
Median Salary
$67,100
Median Debt
$37,697
Median Salary
$66,100
Median Debt
$77,750
Median Salary
$65,800
Median Debt
$29,260
Median Salary
$65,600
Median Debt
$51,250
Median Salary
$65,300
Median Debt
$53,985
Median Salary
$65,200
Median Debt
$41,000
Median Salary
$65,000
Median Debt
$30,000
Median Salary
$64,900
Median Debt
$44,352
Median Salary
$64,900
Median Debt
$29,664
Median Salary
$64,400
Median Debt
$33,428
Median Salary
$64,100
Median Debt
$108,349
Median Salary
$64,100
Median Debt
$36,543
Median Salary
$63,400
Median Debt
$36,138
Median Salary
$63,300
Median Debt
$86,000
Median Salary
$62,900
Median Debt
$41,000
Median Salary
$62,400
Median Debt
$41,000
Median Salary
$62,000
Median Debt
Not Reported
Median Salary
$62,000
Median Debt
$40,723
Median Salary
$61,900