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Understanding the experiences of SLPD students (Sylvan & Becker, 2022)

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posted on 01.08.2022, 17:57 authored by Lesley Sylvan, Robyn Becker

Purpose: The purpose of this study was to investigate the experiences of doctor of speech-language pathology (SLPD) students and graduates related to their engagement with the SLPD application process, their career goals and outcomes, and their general reflections regarding their decision to pursue the SLPD degree.

Method: One hundred seven current students and alumni from SLPD programs completed a survey regarding their motivations and goals for applying to an SLPD program, experiences during the application process, the advantages and disadvantages of the SLPD degree and individuals’ specific programs, and the impact of acquiring this degree. Recruitment efforts included contacting program directors and posting to national social media sites.

Results: Survey results suggested that the majority of respondents felt that the SLPD degree is a good fit for working speech-language pathologists (SLPs) who are motivated to further their education and that there is the potential to expand clarity and communication related to the purpose of the SLPD degree.

Conclusions: The SLPD degree offers SLPs the flexibility to continue full-time work while deepening their knowledge and expertise in communication sciences and disorders. Increasing messaging by key stakeholders related to career outcomes would be beneficial.


Supplemental Material S1. Open-ended questions and codes. 


Sylvan, L., & Becker, R. (2022). Understanding the experiences of students within doctor of speech-language pathology programs: Perceptions about their educational experiences. Perspectives of the ASHA Special Interest Groups. Advance online publication. https://doi.org/10.1044/2022_PERSP-22-00025

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