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Why choose the KU Intercampus Program in Communicative Disorders?

We want to share why we think the University of Kansas is the best place to earn your degree in audiology or speech-language pathology.

Two of our programs are nationally ranked, and we have unique program attributes that you won't find anywhere else. KU also offers diverse clinical opportunities, including those interested in bilingual components as well as patient populations considered underserved, uninsured and underinsured. We also have our own clinics.

Innovative Simulation Environment

The simulation lab at KU Medical Center is an open-access learning space where students get hands-on experience with state-of-the-art audiology simulators and live equipment.

Students practice important diagnostic skills with a fully equipped hearing booth. They learn impression and wax removal techniques with real-time video input thanks to our fleet of Carl simulators. They have personal use of Otosim devices with a library of more than 200 images and practice cases and access to a variety of software-based simulators. This lab creates a safe learning environment and allows students to work collaboratively with peers.

Read on below for more reasons to consider KU.

Top Ten Reasons to Choose KU

Our dual-campus program combines audiology and speech-language pathology research, clinics and faculty from the KU Lawrence campus and the KU Medical Center Kansas City campus. Students in all degree programs have the unique opportunity to take courses at both locations and from faculty that include American Speech Language Hearing Association Fellows. It's the best of both worlds!

Our master's degree program in speech-language pathology is ranked eighth in the nation by U.S. News and World Report

More than 50 years ago, our audiology doctorate was the first program to be accreditated in the U.S. Today it is ranked no. 14 in the nation by U.S. News and World Report

KU also was one of the first schools to offer the clinical doctorate in speech-language pathology (SLP.D.) and one of only a few programs in existence today. 

The Intercampus Program in Communicative Disorders employs more than 25 faculty members in Kansas City and in Lawrence who specialize in many areas. Whereas many graduate programs have a smaller faculty who must teach many subjects, our extensive number of faculty have the unique opportunity to teach and conduct research in their areas of expertise, allowing students to receive the most up-to-date information in the field. 

In addition to their knowledge of audiology and speech-language pathology, our award-winning faculty have a wide range of expertise from other disciplines including the neurosciences, engineering and otolaryngology. Many clinical faculty teach and conduct research in their areas of expertise as well as practice in on- and off-site clinics. Our Ph.D. programs offer opportunities to work with clinical faculty who also manage programs and serve as administrators.  

Our students are regularly selected for prestigious, paid externship rotations in audiology and clinical fellowship years in speech-language pathology, and have been for more than 10 years. Additionally, research doctoral degree graduates have successfully obtained positions in higher education or research organizations. See the student engagement and achievements page for a list of current and former positions held by KU alumni.

As a major research university and one of 36 public institutions in the Association of American Universities (AAU), KU and the Intercampus Program in Communicative Disorders provide an abundance of research opportunities for students. 

KU has several major centers and institutes, including a National-Institute on Aging-designated Alzheimer's Disease Research Center, where students can work in labs and learn research-related topics in areas such as the following:

  • Rat models of immittance.
  • Hair-cell regeneration.
  • Neural correlates of speech processing.
  • Diagnostic tools for detection of hidden hearing loss.
  • Evoked-potentials in Meniere’s disease.
  • Hearing and cognition.
  • Progression of genetic hearing loss.
  • Auditory changes following concussion.
  • Hearing in noise ability with cochlear implantation.  

Students can pursue research in labs and through individualized faculty instruction. Following are just a few research opportunities for students:

The Lawrence and KU Medical Center campuses feature first-rate research facilities, including on-campus research labs and collaboration with a nationally ranked hospital health system.

In the last five years, the KU Medical Center Kansas City campus opened a new 170,000-square-foot facility, the Health Education Building, that serves as the primary teaching facility for the KU School of Health Professions and students in hearing and speech programs. It features a simulation center and flexible, state-of-the-art learning space to support new models of teaching.

The medical center shares its Kansas City campus with The University of Kansas Health System, which serves as the primary clinical training facility for the university.  In 2017, the health system opened a new medical tower, The University of Kansas Hospital Cambridge Tower A, which features 92 private rooms and 11 state-of-the-art surgical suites. The tower houses surgical oncology, neurology, neurosurgery and ear, nose and throat services.

Our clinics in the Kansas City metro area, Lawrence and Topeka provide our students and faculty with a diverse patient population and an abundance of future career opportunities.

Within our audiology and speech-language pathology clinics, students are exposed to different practice models. Staff and clinicians in our Lawrence clinics work in teams, while personnel in the KU Medical Center clinics work in a traditional one-on-one approach with patients and within interprofessional education teams and multidisciplinary teams targeting specific disease states/diagnoses

Rather than students having to find their own clinical placements, our clinic directors place students at our clinical affiliate sites.

We believe support for our students is essential, and we provide this in several ways. Faculty advisors are assigned to support students and provide mentorship while first-year Au.D. students are assigned an upperclassman to be their "ear bud." In addition to our faculty members, the program has six dedicated departmental administrative support staff who build relationships with students and promote a culture of collaboration and partnership.

KU Medical Center is one of the region's only academic medical centers, allowing for interprofessional education and clinical opportunities on a regular basis.

Interprofessional Education is integrated into the curriculum of each degree program within the Intercampus Program in Communicative Disorders. That means that you will learn alongside other health care professional students, including medical, nursing and other health professions students.

Students not only learn about interprofessional education in simulated experiences, but function as part of interprofessional teams during clinical rotations at KUMC. 

Our students have the opportunity to participate in local community outreach efforts and international experiences to supplement their understanding of hearing and speech needs in diverse populations.

The Intercampus Program in Communicative Disorders partners with various non-profit, civic and governmental organizations to provide students with unique experiences

Students can participate in annual international trips to Peru to work with children on the spectrum in the Ann Sullivan Center in Peru and to Guatemala to provide hearing services.

Whether you choose to live in the Kansas City or Lawrence areas, you will find affordable accommodations with unique community amenities.

Kansas City

Our campus is located in Kansas City, Kansas, but we are one block from the state line and close to the historic Country Club Plaza. The Crossroads art district and downtown Kansas City, Mo, is a short drive. 

With residents at a median age of 37, Kansas City is a young city bursting with activities. There are tons of activities that won’t break the grad-school bank including historic neighborhoods, jazz, food culture, professional sports teams, and arts and cultural activities.

It is an amazing community for graduate students given the low cost of living, free public streetcars, access to ebikes and scooters, and affordable airfare to most regions of the U.S. given our central location. Get to know more about Kansas City.


With a population of about 100,000, Lawrence, Kansas has the feel of a small college town. Combine city parks and miles of trails and paths with the locally owned shops and music venues of downtown Massachusetts Street, and you've got something for everyone.

On the Lawrence campus of the University of Kansas, you'll have access to all the energy and excitement a college campus can provide. There are more than 600 student organizations, arts and cultural events, as well as sporting events, like Jayhawk basketball!

KU School of Health Professions