Do I need to have an undergraduate degree in Speech and Hearing Sciences or Communication Disorders to apply to the Doctor of Audiology (Au.D.) Program?

No. Applicants only need to have a bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited College or University. Applicants ARE NOT required to have a background or coursework in speech and hearing sciences or communication disorders in order to apply or be accepted into the program.

If I don’t have a background or bachelor’s degree in speech and hearing sciences, will I be at a disadvantage during admissions? Will preference be given to students with a communication sciences and disorders background?

No. The admissions committee does not give preference to individuals with a background in speech and hearing. The presence or absence of speech and hearing coursework does not influence the admissions committee decision to offer or deny admission to the Doctor of Audiology program.

What coursework is required to apply to the Au.D. program?

There are no coursework requirements. Anyone with a bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited institution who meets the English language, GRE and minimum grade point average requirements is eligible to apply and be admitted to the Doctor of Audiology program.

However, because we are accredited by the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA) there are several undergraduate science, math, and speech and hearing courses that are required by ASHA for clinical certification in audiology. All applicants should review the Prerequisite Coursework section of the website for complete information about the coursework requirements and options for completing coursework.

Applicants are not required to complete these courses before entry into the graduate program, but will need to complete them by the end of the Au.D. program for certification and graduation purposes. As a result, we strongly encourage individuals to complete these courses in advance of graduate school if possible.

If I don’t have a background in speech and hearing sciences, will I need to take any additional coursework while in the graduate program?

Yes. Because ASHA requires specific undergraduate knowledge in speech and hearing in order to be eligible for clinical certification, students without the coursework listed below will need to integrate it into the graduate program.

  1. the normal development of speech and language; and
  2. speech and language disorders across the life span

At the University of Washington, Doctor of Audiology students who did not major in speech and hearing typically take SPHSC 250, 304, 305, or 425 to satisfy this content requirement.

We also encourage (but do not require) students without a speech and hearing background to consider taking our SPHSC 371: Hearing Disorders course during Summer quarter (or a similar course at another school).

Do I have to meet the undergraduate science and math coursework requirements prior to entering the Au.D. program?

No, but we do strongly encourage you to do so if possible. It can be challenging to take these courses while completing your graduate studies. The coursework will need to be completed by the end of the Au.D. program in order to apply for clinical certification.

Will my program extend beyond four years if I have to take courses to meet the ASHA undergraduate requirements?

Possibly. It depends on how many courses you need to take. Typically individuals are able to address any undergraduate coursework deficiencies within the parameters of the 4-year program. If an individual had not completed any ASHA required courses (3 science courses, 1 math course, 1 speech and hearing course) there is a chance their program could be extended. However, most students are able to complete all requirements within 4 years.

Where can I take ASHA required courses if I want to complete them prior to starting the Au.D. program?

Individuals can take courses anywhere as long as they satisfy ASHA's requirements. Students are able to take courses at the University of Washington during Summer quarter as a Non-Matriculated (NM) student if desired.

Do you accept transfer students from other programs?

No. We do not accept transfer students into our Doctor of Audiology program.

If admitted, may I defer entrance to the program?

No. Planning for your program begins immediately upon admission. On-campus and off-site clinical experiences are arranged annually. If you are admitted, then choose not to enter the program, the strength of your re-application in subsequent years is considered within the pool of applicants at that time.

How many students are admitted to the Doctor of Audiology Program?

Approximately 12 students are admitted each year.

Are there minimum GPA and/or GRE scores required for admission to the Doctor of Audiology Program?

A minimum GPA of 3.0 during the last 90 quarter credit hours of study (60 semester hours) is required. There are no GRE score requirements. We consider all applicant credentials and information during the application process. High GPAs and GRE scores are desirable, but are not the controlling factors in admission. Please review our Student Outcomes Data for details about average GPA and GRE scores for our admitted students.

If I accept an offer of admission what happens next?

All new students receive a welcome letter from the Department with instructions on how to prepare for the graduate program. Students will access the dedicated section of our website for New Graduate Students which provides specific instructions, forms, and checklists to new students, and will communicate with their assigned Graduate Program Advisor about preparation for graduate school.

How can I learn more about applying for and receiving financial aid at the University of Washington?

Prospective students who want to learn more about loans, work study, grants, and scholarships should carefully read the information on the University of Washington Office of Student Financial Aid website.

To apply for a Federal Stafford Direct Loan, fill out a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) on line at or on paper and submit it to the address included on the application. If you are offered admission to the graduate program and your FAFSA is approved, the University of Washington will send you a financial aid eligibility letter and a promissory note asking how much you wish to borrow. You will need the University of Washington’s federal financial aid code for the FAFSA: 003798.

If a student qualifies for UW Work Study, the Department of Speech and Hearing Sciences makes every effort to employ the student within the Department, including its laboratories. Work study positions are readily available throughout the UW campus, as well. Student should review all Work Study Program information on the Office of Student Financial Aid website.

Is other financial assistance available for Au.D. students through the Department?

Although there are a very limited number of full tuition appointments available in our department, most students in the Au.D. program are supported by some type of financial assistance. This includes work study, research assistantships, teaching assistantships, and residency tuition waivers. A list of possible financial aid sources (from inside and outside the Department) is available in the Financial Assistance section of our website.

What is the WICHE/WRGP Tuition Waiver?

The state of Washington is a member of the Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education (WICHE), which is a 15-state commission working to improve access to higher education for students in the western region.

The University of Washington’s Au.D. program is part of WICHE’s Western Regional Graduate Program that allows out-of-state applicants who are legal residents of one of the WICHE states (AK, AZ, CA, CO, HI, ID, MT, NV, NM, ND, OR, SD, UT, WY) to apply to receive for the resident tuition rate if accepted into the program. See the Tuition and Fees section of the web for more information on the WRGP resident tuition rate option.

If out-of-state applicants from the 14 WICHE/WRGP states receive priority during admissions , should I even apply if I am not from one of those states?

Yes! The admissions committee evaluates applications from all students. We strive for student diversity in our program, which includes geographic diversity. All out-of-state students are encouraged to apply.

If I previously lived in a non-WICHE state but now currently reside in one of the 14 eligible states for the purpose of attending college, can I apply for the WRGP resident tuition rate?

Not unless you have established legal residency in the state. If you are attending school and paying the non-resident tuition rate and/or still maintain a permanent legal residence in a non-WICHE state, you are ineligible to apply for the WRGP rate.

Is there a different tuition rate for out-of-state students?

Yes. For the state-funded portion of the Au.D. program, students will be charged either a resident or non-resident per credit tuition rate. All UW tuition rates and fees are posted on the Planning and Budgeting website. You can also visit the Tuition and Fees section of our website for full a full breakdown of tuition costs.

I am not a Washington resident. What do I need to do to establish in-state residency?

Information on residency requirements are available at
(see the section on “Graduate and professional nonresident students”)

Are out-of-state students still eligible for the “Graduate Student Residency Tuition Waiver” at the University of Washington?

No. Between 2005 and 2011, the University of Washington Regents offered non-resident graduate and professional students who had lived in the state for at least one year, an annual waiver of the differential between resident and non-resident tuition. However, any student entering a graduate program as of July 21 2012 will no longer have access to this waiver.

Fortunately, out-of-state students who are applying to the Doctor of Audiology program and are residents of AK, AZ, CA, CO, HI, ID, MT, NV, NM, ND, OR, SD, UT or WY can now apply to receive the WRGP resident tuition rate for the first 3 years of the program thanks to our partnership with WICHE.

How long does it take to complete the program?

The Doctor of Audiology program takes 4 years or 15 quarters to complete if students adhere to the program plan as designed.

Can I complete my graduate program in less than 15 quarters?

No. A minimum of 15 quarters are necessary in order to complete the didactic, clinical, and research requirements of the program.

Can I earn a master’s degree?

No. The clinical doctorate is now the entry-level degree required for clinical practice in the field of audiology. As a result, we no longer offer a master’s degree leading to clinical certification in audiology; only a doctoral degree.

What is the difference between an Au.D. and a Ph.D. degree?

The Doctor of Audiology (Au.D.) degree is a clinical doctorate focused on preparing students for clinical practice and certification as audiologists. The Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) degree is doctorate that prepares students for careers in research and/or teaching.

Can I still work clinically if I complete a Ph.D. instead of an Au.D. degree?

It depends. State licensure laws permit either a Ph.D. or Au.D. to work as a clinical professional, provided that all the ASHA clinical education requirements have been met as part of the degree program. In our department, the Au.D. degree is the only degree that provides sufficient knowledge and supervised clinical training to obtain state licensure to practice audiology. A student who wishes to obtain only a Ph.D. degree in our program would not be eligible to practice clinically.

I already have a master’s degree and am clinically certified. Can I upgrade to the Au.D. degree?

No. The department does not offer a program for practicing clinicians who already hold a master’s degree to complete the Au.D.

What are the policies and procedures if I want to complete both an Au.D. and PhD degree?
  1. Enroll in the Au.D. program and complete one full year;
  2. Apply for the Ph.D. program by February 15th of your 2nd year;
  3. If accepted, begin taking electives to fulfill your PhD requirements in the spring quarter of your second year.

Please refer to our Au.D./Ph.D. Information web page for more details.

Can I take Au.D. classes via distance learning?

No. The Au.D. program does not incorporate a distance learning educational model. The Au.D. program is a full-time, day program and all courses must be completed while in residence.

What are the academic performance expectations for the graduate program?

Students must:
1) Maintain satisfactory scholarship with a cumulative and quarterly GPA of 3.0 or greater while in the program.

2) Demonstrate satisfactory progress by obtaining a passing grade (e.g., 2.7, credit, pass) in all didactic, clinical, research, and comprehensive exam requirements.

3) Demonstrate (with or without accommodations) the essential behaviors and abilities outlined in the “Essential Requirements of Speech and Hearing Science Education”.

Please see the Satisfactory Progress section of the website for additional details.

Are Summer quarter classes required?

Absolutely. The Doctor of Audiology program is in session every quarter, including Summer quarter. Breaks in your program greatly complicate your plan of study and preclude the careful planning that has gone into matching your classroom experiences with your clinical training.

What types of facilities/settings are available for clinical practicum placements and externships?

Clinical experiences can occur in public schools, outpatient clinics, private practices, and hospitals.

Do I need to provide my own transportation to off-site placements?

Yes. Students are required to provide their own transportation to and from community sites starting in their second year of the program. Many, but not all, facilities are served by public transportation. For those students without cars, the UW offers a Zipcar option with discounts to UPASS holders.

Will I have to work on weekends during my off-site practica placements?

Possibly. Many of our affiliated sites provide services seven days a week. Subsequently, students may be placed at facilities that will require weekend attendance due to supervisor or site availability.

Do I get to choose where I complete my clinical practicum and externship placements?

Our fieldwork coordinators schedule all clinical practicum rotations during the first three years of the Au.D. program. Every student will be assigned to a variety of clinical experiences and facilities in order to meet ASHA and program requirements. However, student interests, skills and performance are considered when making assignments. Student input is solicited and integrated into the decision-making process to match student interests with the best available community sites and clinical supervisors.

For the year-long externships, students are not placed. Rather, students apply and interview for externship positions on their own. Faculty and staff provide students with support and guidance throughout this process, including providing information about externship availability.

Will I be able to get a job when I graduate?

Although no one can predict economic conditions, based on current demographics, employment opportunities for Au.D. graduates are expected to continue to be plentiful. Since 2007, 95% of all students completing the Au.D. degree from the University of Washington have been successful in securing a professional position in a medical, educational or private setting.

What is life in Seattle like?

The Pacific Northwest is often described as the best of all worlds. Our climate is mild. Because we are located on the beautiful Puget Sound, but close to the Cascade and Olympic mountain ranges, you can be sea kayaking on Saturday and cross-country skiing on Sunday. Year-round hiking and world famous ski resorts are within easy reach of Seattle. Miles of bike paths, incredible on-campus sports and workout facilities, and the vibrant, energetic Seattle culture make the University of Washington a perfect place to study and live. The greater metropolitan area offers the full range of cultural and recreational opportunities you would expect, from the world-class Seattle Symphony to professional sports. Seattle is the home of the Seahawks, the Mariners, the Storm, and the Sounders as well as a friendly culture of community sports leagues. Clean air, a pervasive international flavor, and the warmth of the Pacific Northwesterner are all big draws.