Master's Thesis

Students interested in completing a master’s thesis, and who are in good academic standing, have the option to interview with members of the speech-language pathology and related faculty during their first year, for the opportunity to complete research during their graduate program. Each Spring quarter, faculty members conduct interviews and open their research labs to students who may be interested in completing a thesis. The selection process takes both faculty and student preferences into account. If selected, most students start their thesis work during Summer quarter of their first year and complete it by the Summer of their second year (final quarter in the program).

The number of thesis opportunities awarded each year is based on multiple factors, including the number of interested students and the number of available spaces in faculty research labs. If selected, students are assigned a thesis chair who will guide their research and a thesis committee is established with 2-4 total members (including the chair). Thesis chairs must be graduate faculty within the department, but other thesis committee members can be from different disciplines and departments.

Additional Coursework for Students Completing a Thesis

All students selected to complete a thesis are required to take the following additional courses. Please note that the decision to complete a thesis could extend a student’s program beyond the standard 8 quarters.

Required: SPHSC 700 – Master’s Thesis. Students must register for at least 9 credits total of SPHSC 700. Once thesis works begins, students must register for some number of SPHSC 700 credits each quarter until the thesis is complete. Please be aware that students must be registered for at least 1 credit of SPHSC 700 during the quarter in which they defend their thesis and apply to graduate.

Optional: Statistics courses at 400 level or above. As necessary, the student’s thesis mentor will guide the student in registering for an appropriate statistics course based upon his/her research focus.

Independent Study

Graduate students may take independent study that encompasses indvidual research, readings, study, or other activities with a faculty member. In an independent study experience, you will essentially create your own course on a topic of your choice, working in concert with a faculty member.

If you are looking for an opportunity to try research or explore a topic in more depth you may wish to consider doing an independent study under faculty supervision. Faculty may have you assist with research projects, or help guide your study on a topic of mutual interest.