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Master of Science in Speech-Language Pathology Strategic Plan

Executive Summary

To meet the current and future clinical speech and communication disorder needs of western Pennsylvania and eastern Ohio, Thiel College, for approximately forty years, has prepared students for careers and graduate work in Speech Pathology. In alignment with the institutional strategic plan, the College, in 2020, will begin to offer a Master in Science in speech-language pathology program that has been approved for candidacy by the Council on Academic Accreditation in Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association. By training qualified undergraduate and graduate students, the College will develop professionals who can provide excellent services to clients grounded in high ethical standards, evidenced-based decision-making, and compassion.


The mission of the Thiel College Master of Science in speech-language pathology program is to graduate speech-language professionals who have the disciplinary knowledge and skills, clinical preparation and dispositions to provide entry-level services to diverse clienteles and to meet the needs of their community.

Goal 1 - Enroll cohorts of increasing size beginning in 2020

  1. Strategy 1: Implement enrollment plan including admissions requirements to enroll:
    1. Matriculation in Summer 2020—10 students
    2. Matriculation in Summer 2021—12 students
    3. Matriculation in Summer 2022—15 students
    4. Matriculation in Summer 2023—17 students
    5. Matriculation in Summer 2024—20 students
  2. Strategy 2: Develop marketing plan to promote visibility, both internal and external, to create awareness of this new graduate offering and its admissions requirements.
  3. Strategy 3: Monitor persistence-to-degree completion and address barriers to success.

Goal 2 - Develop and deliver a graduate curriculum aligned with CAA standards to meet community needs

  1. Strategy 1: Develop a graduate-level curriculum that addresses ASHA standards.
  2. Strategy 2: Integrate practical clinical experience with the master’s program.
  3. Strategy 3: Monitor effectiveness of the curriculum and practical experience in preparing student success to meet the needs of their community.

Goal 3 - Ensure instructional and scholarly excellence through recruitment and retention of high-performing faculty

  1. Strategy 1: Create compelling opportunities for faculty to teach, research, and mentor students to success.          
  2. Strategy 2: Establish faculty development programs and adequate support for continued professional development.
  3. Strategy 3: Ensure that faculty compensation is competitive with regional graduate programs in the field.

Goal 4 - Establish appropriate technical infrastructure and facilities, including a Community Clinic, to support student learning and to meet community needs

  1. Strategy 1: Identify location for a Community Clinic.
  2. Strategy 2: Secure funds, internal and external, to support design and construction of new space.
  3. Strategy 3: Ensure a welcoming environment for diverse clientele and an effective learning space for students.

Goal 5 - Ensure the effectiveness and relevance of the curriculum through continuous student learning and programmatic outcomes monitoring and strategic planning

  1. Strategy 1: Establish student learning outcomes aligned with ASHA standards.
  2. Strategy 2: Identify appropriate assessment methods to monitor student learning and success.
  3. Strategy 3: Establish methods of scheduling for utilizing assessment results to strengthen learning.

Goal 6 - Ensure financial sustainability of the program through appropriate tuition and scholarship modeling, fundraising, and auxiliary income strategies

  1. Strategy 1: Develop tuition and scholarship model for students currently enrolled in the B.S. program in Speech Language Pathology for Thiel College and for external candidates.
  2. Strategy 2: Create Advancement plan to foster fundraising in support of the program.
  3. Strategy 3: Identify grant opportunities to support the program.
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