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About the School

The School of Human Communication Disorders (SHCD) at Dalhousie University was founded in 1976. It offers the only programs in audiology and speech-language pathology in Atlantic Canada.

Both programs lead to a Master of Science degree.  Each program is three years long in contrast to other programs in the country, which are only two years long. Because of the three-year duration of our programs, applicants are not required to have completed specific prerequisite courses before entering. Instead, students take foundation courses during their first year of study to prepare them for the profession-specific courses that follow.

The school prides itself on the clinical education opportunities available to our students. We are fortunate to be affiliated with the Nova Scotia Hearing and Speech Centres, a provincial agency whose mandate is to provide speech, language and hearing services to preschool-aged and adult Nova Scotians. Many practicum placements occur at the centre’s clinics both in the Halifax area and other locations in the province. Students also receive clinical education in our own school-based clinics, including the Dalhousie Aphasia Clinic, Accent Clinic, and Audiology Clinics. In addition, students are placed in carefully selected sites throughout the Atlantic Provinces for internships and externships or may choose other locations for their externships, including their home province or an international site.

Along with coursework and clinical education, students in both our programs have the opportunity to engage in research activity. Students enter either a research project or thesis stream of their program. The programs are identical except for the research component: Students in the research project stream complete a one-credit research project while students in the thesis stream complete a two-credit thesis.  Students typically pursue research on topics that coincide with the research programs and interests of faculty. These topics include both applied and basic research in such areas as cochlear physiology, speech perception, dialects, language development, adult aural rehabilitation and many more.

The school is accredited by the Council for Accreditation of Canadian University Programs in Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology (CACUP-ASLP). Accreditation is assurance that Dalhousie graduates meet the academic requirements for Speech-Language & Audiology Canada (SAC) certification and registration in all provincial regulatory bodies.