Interdisciplinary Preparation Graduate Scholarship

Interdisciplinary Preparation of Teachers of the Deaf and Speech-Language Pathologists to Provide Early Intervention Services to Young Children Who Are Deaf/Hard of Hearing and their Families (H325K170008)

Through interdisciplinary education, scholars in this program will become teachers of the deaf and speech-language pathologists qualified to serve young children who are deaf/hard of hearing (DHH) and their families. The six-semester evidence-based program will prepare students seeking master’s degrees in Early Intervention in Deaf Education (MA) or Speech language Pathology (MS) to:

  • Provide family-centered early intervention to children who are DHH, including those who are culturally/linguistically diverse;
  • Participate on interdisciplinary teams to implement and evaluate intensive individualized interventions;
  • Enhance language/literacy acquisition;
  • Facilitate use of hearing through evidence-based strategies and technology;
  • Support instruction in inclusive environments.

“This grant will allow two already very successful graduate programs to prepare early interventionists and speech-language pathologists using an interprofessional model,” said Dr. Gale Rice, professor and dean of the College of Education and Allied Health Professions. “The result will be practitioners who will maximize outcomes for young children who are deaf/hard of hearing and their families. This is an innovative change in professional preparation, which tends to occur in professional silos.”

This award will provide tuition support for 23 hours of interdisciplinary coursework and field experiences focused on family-centered early intervention, speech/hearing language/literacy, infant/child development, and assessment. Interdisciplinary activities also include attendance at professional forums and participation in learning community activities (e.g., journal clubs, service/advocacy events). Post-graduation, professionals will participate in a mentorship program to increase retention of knowledge and skills. Induction activities include: online discussion groups, attendance at professional forums, and cohort meetings. The mentor will observe professionals on the job–coaching and promoting reflective practice. Graduates will prepare professional learning materials for colleagues to enhance service delivery for young children who are DHH.

Program scholars will be required to fulfill program requirements and a federal service obligation. The service obligation states that program graduates will be required to work with IEP eligible students for two years for every year of funding they accept.

NOTE: Funded scholars must remain a student in good standing, with a minimum GPA of 3.5 while enrolled in the program. Students who fall below this grade point average or who are placed on clinic or academic probation will forfeit the financial award. Additionally, program scholars are limited to no more than two absences throughout the duration of the program.

Courses required for EIDE and SLP IPEI Scholars

  • CDS 500

    Introduction to Research Methods

    3 credits

    An intensive theoretical and didactic study of the components of research design in the field of communication disorders including the types of research, preparation, and presentation of the research manuscript and critical analysis of journal articles.

  • CDS 523

    Intervention with Children who areDeaf or Hard of Hearing

    3 credits

    This course provides an overview of deafness and the needs of children who are deaf or hard of hearing. Topics include audiologic trends, the development of speech and language, educational programming, mainstreaming and inclusion issues, instructional planning, early intervention, and the needs of the hard-of-hearing child.

  • CDS 531

    Communication Development forChildren who are Deaf or Hard of Hearing

    3 credits

    A study of the development of listening and spoken language for children who are deaf/hard of hearing including assessment, planning, intervention strategies and implementation of techniques and activities. The course also addresses communicative interactions, play and cognitive development as it relates to communication development, the impact of additional disabilities and collaborative practices used by professionals. Prerequisite: CDS 523.

  • CDS 512

    Language and Literacy

    3 credits

    This course is intended for graduate students in speech-language pathology, deaf education, regular education and special education. It will explore practical methods of assessment, supportive strategy development, and curricular adaptations for early childhood, school-age, and post-secondary learners who exhibit language and learning difficulties and therefore are at risk for literacy disorders, resulting in the need for support in receptive and expressive language, reading, and written expression. FA, (online) SP, SU

  • CDS 539

    Family-Centered Field Experience

    1 credit

    This course provides students with experiences working with caregivers in the natural environments. The focus of intervention in this practicum is on the use of family-centered coaching practices. FA, SP

  • CDS 552

    Counseling Issues in CommunicationDisorders

    3 credits

    Topics include an introduction to counseling theories, training in interviewing and  interpersonal communication skills, and application of counseling theories to communication disorders.

  • CDS 555

    Pediatric Audiology & Habilitation

    3-4 credits

    The study of the development of the auditory system; etiology of hearing loss in children; techniques for assessment of neonates through school-age children and difficult to test; interpretation of results. Use of assistive listening devices for young children and strategies for developing auditory skills in hearing aid and cochlear implant users. Prerequisite: CDS 410 or course must be taken for 4 credit hours.

  • CDS 572

    Collaborative Seminar in Augmentative Communication and Cochlear Implants

    1 credit

    This course will prepare the student to analyze case
    studies of complex learners who use augmentative
    communication and/or cochlear implants. Students will
    demonstrate knowledge of interdisciplinary collaboration,
    analysis of learner needs with respect to the general
    education curriculum, the use of technology to facilitate
    participation in the classroom, and methods of assessing
    learner outcomes.

  • ECE 555

    Family-Centered Intervention

    3 credits

    Focus on the key elements of family-centered intervention. Discussion will center on the partnership of family members with professionals in all aspects of early
    intervention, conducting assessments, prioritized intervention goals, designing intervention plans, and implementation.

Application Process

To apply, first submit an application to either the EIDE or SLP program. Upon acceptance into the program of study, admitted students will be able to apply for the scholarship. SLP program applications are due by Jan. 15, while EIDE applications are due Feb. 1, with cohorts of funded scholars beginning in the summer term.

Contact Us

For more information, contact project co-directors:

EIDE: Jenna Voss, Ph.D., CED, LSLS Cert AVEd. at
SLP: Laura O’Hara, Ph.D., CCC-SLP at