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CSD Technical Standards

The technical standards for admission to and continued enrollment in the Speech-Language Pathology program reflect the essential qualities and abilities that are considered necessary to a student’s academic and clinical performance. Ability to meet these Technical Standards is required for admission and also must be maintained through out a student’s progress in the Speech-Language Pathology program. In the event that, during education, a student is unable to fulfill these technical standards, with or without reasonable accommodation, then the student may be asked to leave the program. Students should carefully review the “technical standards” below to determine if accommodation is needed to perform any of the required tasks.

To perform the essential functions of a speech-language pathologist and be successful in the Speech-Language Pathology program, an individual must possess specific skills and abilities in the following four areas:

  1. Observation Skills
  2. Psychomotor Skills
  3. Cognitive Abilities
  4. Affective/Behavioral Skills


1. Observation Skills

  • Observe, interpret, and document client’s/patients’ activity and behavior accurately during assessment and treatment procedures.
  • Accurately monitor through both visual and auditory modalities, equipment displays and controls used for assessment and treatment of patients.

2. Psychomotor Skills

  • Attend and participate in lecture and laboratory classes, and access laboratories, classrooms, and work stations.
  • Attend and participate in clinical internships/externships in assigned locations.
  • Accomplish required tasks in clinical and academic settings.
  • Have the fine motor coordination to accurately and efficiently use equipment and materials during assessment and treatment of clients/patients.

3. Cognitive Abilities

  • Comprehend, integrate, and synthesize a large body of information/knowledge in a short period of time.
  • Analyze complex client/patient problems.
  • Reflect on clinical and academic performance and self assess performance accurately.
  • Utilize appropriate and effective spoken, written and non-verbal communication. Students must be able to understand and speak the English language at a level consistent with competent professional practice by graduation.

4. Affective/Behavioral Skills

  • Demonstrate appreciation and respect for individual, social, and cultural differences in fellow students, colleagues, staff, clients/patients, and significant others.
  • Demonstrate appropriate behaviors, emotional stability, and attitudes to protect the safety and well being of clients/patients and classmates.
  • Possess and demonstrate empathy, and demonstrate commitment to the role of the Speech-Language Pathologist.
  • Demonstrate ability to appropriately handle situations that may be emotionally, physically, or intellectually stressful.
  • Demonstrate flexibility and the ability to adjust to changing situations and uncertainty in academic and clinical situations.
  • Demonstrate honesty, integrity, and professionalism.
  • Maintain confidentiality of client/patient information.

Candidates for admission to the Master’s Degree Program in Speech-Language Pathology who have been accepted for admission will be required to verify they understand and meet these technical standards with or without accomodation.

Letters of admission will be offered contingent on either a signed statement from the applicant that she/he can meet the program’s technical standards without accommodation, or a signed statement from the applicant that she/he believes she/he can meet the technical standards if reasonable accommodation is provided.

The WCU Student Disabilities Services office will evaluate a student who states she/he could meet the program’s technical standards with accommodation and confirm that the stated condition qualifies as a disability under applicable laws.

If an applicant states she/he can meet the technical standards with accommodation, then the University will determine whether it agrees that the student can meet the technical standards with reasonable accommodation; this includes a review of whether the accommodations requested are reasonable, taking into account whether the accommodation would jeopardize client/patient safety, or the educational process of the student or the institution, including all coursework and internships deemed essential to graduation.

WCU Disabilities Services, the Speech-Language pathology program, and the student will jointly decide what accommodations are suitable, possible in terms of reasonable accommodation, and will render the person capable of performing all essential functions established by the program.

I certify that I have read and understand the technical standards of admission listed above and that I believe to the best of my knowledge that I meet each of these standards without accommodation. I understand that if I am unable to meet these standards it may void admission or result in dismissal from the program.



Signature of Applicant Date

Alternative statement for students requesting accommodations.

I certify that I have read and understand the technical standards of admission listed above and that I believe to the best of my knowledge that I can meet each of these standards with certain accommodations. I will contact Lance Alexis at Student Support Services (828) 227-7234 to determine what accommodations may be available. I understand that if I am unable to meet these standards with or without accommodations, it may void admission or result in dismissal from the program.



Signature of Applicant


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