A major in communication disorders explores typical and impaired speech, language, and hearing among children and adults, both in structure and function. The academic and applied experiences in the major provide knowledge and skills you would need to work in a variety of educational and health care settings. A degree in communication sciences also provides a well-rounded basis for graduate study in many fields including, though not limited to, audiology, speech-language pathology, education, psychology, and related fields.

Courses in psychology, American Sign Language, statistics, and science provide a broad perspective on the social and scientific aspects of human communication, giving you the ability to make a difference in people’s lives. It may also help develop your skills and knowledge to be able to work as a paraprofessional in a range of settings. You may also combine your interests in communication disorders with courses and minors in psychology or science, health communication, political communication, journalism, leadership management, entrepreneurship, management communication, or marketing.


The BS in Communication Disorders program will prepare you for paraprofessional employment in the fields of audiology and speech pathology or graduate study in speech-language pathology, audiology, or related areas.

Transfer students entering Emerson later than the first semester of their junior year should expect to enroll for at least an additional term to meet degree requirements.

Recommended Sequence of Required Courses for the Undergraduate CD Major

Freshman Year

Number Course Credits
CD 162 American Sign Language I 4
CD 193 Introduction to Communication Disorders: Diversity and Differences 4

Sophomore Year

Number Course Credits
CD 201 Language Acquisition 4
CD 233 Phonetics 4
CD 234 Speech and Hearing Anatomy and Physiology 4

Junior Year

Number Course Credits
CD 312 Survey of Speech Disorders 4
CD 313 Survey of Language Disorders 4

Senior Year

Number Course Credits
CD 403 Speech Science 3
CD 467 Introductory Audiology 3
CD 468 Aural Rehabilitation 3

Students majoring in Communication Disorders are also advised to take four courses to satisfy the academic requirements for their future certification by the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association, one each in statistics, biological sciences, physics or chemistry, and social/behavioral sciences.