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Bachelor of Speech Pathology

2015 | 2016 | 2017

About this course

The Bachelor of Speech Pathology prepares students for entry into professional speech pathology practice. Speech pathologists assess and treat communication and swallowing disorders of children and adults exhibiting acquired or congenital disorders of speech, fluency, voice, language swallowing.

The degree aims to educate students to become knowledgeable, skilled, empathetic, ethical and innovative professionals who are able to provide effective assessment and intervention for people of different ages, who exhibit health disorders.

Career opportunities

This degree prepares graduates for entry into professional speech pathology practice. Speech pathologists work in community settings such as private practice, health centres, nursing homes and hospitals. There are opportunities to work with interdisciplinary teams in acute or rehabilitation hospitals, in school classroom-based speech pathology intervention (training educators and parents to implement specialist programs), or with other specialists to assess and treat people of any age who have speech, language, language-based literacy, voice, fluency or swallowing difficulties.

Professional recognition

The Bachelor of Speech Pathology is accredited by the Speech Pathology Australia (SPA), the national professional and accrediting body. Students and graduates of the Bachelor of Speech Pathology will be eligible for membership of Speech Pathology Australia.

Professional placement

Students will complete approximately 1 000 hours of professional placement in various settings throughout the four years of study. These settings include but are not limited to the SCU Health Clinic on campus, public hospital, private practice, community health, rehabilitation centres, aged care facilities, schools and rural health locations.

Professional experience placements require students to fulfil certain pre-requisites prior to attending any placements. Before applying for this course, it is important that you understand what these requirements are. For more information please visit scu.edu.au/healthplacements

Major areas of study

The Bachelor of Speech Pathology enables students to develop an understanding of the theoretical and practical components of speech pathology, with a focus on both general and specialist knowledge and skills. The course shares components with existing SCU degrees such as the Bachelor of Occupational Therapy, and the Bachelor of Clinical Sciences.

Arts and science-based units are included in the course. Threaded through the course, are principals of evidence-based practice, cultural competency, multi-modal communication and holistic perspectives of functioning. 

The course includes an embedded allied health Honours program for eligible students, which can be studied concurrently during the Bachelor degree course.

Assessment methods

Assessment methods vary for each unit and may include multiple choice and essay style examinations, scenario-based case studies, tutorial workshop presentations, written assignments and practical skills testing.

Teaching methods

On-campus students experience a variety of teaching approaches including lectures, tutorials, online activities and video-linked or podcast virtual classes as well as clinical practical experience. The method of teaching may vary from unit to unit.

Advanced standing

Your previous learning experiences relevant to one or more units in this course may help you cut months or years off your degree.

  • Recognition of formal and non-formal learning
    Credit may be awarded to a student for formal learning (gained through full or partial achievement of an accredited qualification or course) or non-formal learning (that takes place through a non-accredited course or program of learning) completed at Southern Cross University or in other learning settings in Australia and/or overseas.

To help you identify how much credit you may receive for your related prior learning, the University has evaluated the learning within some Australian and overseas qualifications/courses, visit SCU Pathways. If your previous study or educational institution is not listed, we still encourage you to apply for advanced standing because you might still be eligible.

An application for advanced standing must be submitted so we can assess your prior learning. Please apply for advanced standing at the same time as you apply for admission into this course, because the amount of credit awarded will determine the sequence of units you will study.

 Go to course structure to see if specific advanced standing rules also apply to this course.

Learning support

Learning resources

MySCU is a student's point of entry to a range of online services and resources that support study and student life. The portal includes unit learning sites and information sites where students can access resources, communication tools and useful links that are integral to their studies.

The web-based study environment Blackboard Learn delivers an advanced online learning environment for students and lecturers to communicate and collaborate through virtual meeting spaces, classrooms, and discussion boards. They can share files, presentations and applications. If a tutorial or lecture is recorded, students can view it afterwards.

Learning materials include the provision of unit information guides, study guides and readings. Students may need to purchase or access prescribed text books.

The SCU Library provides a wide range of services that include face-to-face and online help, and access to print and electronic resources. To find out more, see the Library Toolbox.

The Academic Skills team supports student learning by offering online and on-campus academic skills workshops, email, phone, and one-on-one support.

Equipment and facilities

Students have access to laboratories, enabling quality learning experiences for anatomy, physiology and neurology, and also clinical learning spaces within on-campus clinics. 

Students access the speech language and video laboratory. The facility is sound treated to enable high quality sound transmission and phonetic transcription of speech sounds. It includes computers with state-of-the-art software for students to analyse speech, language, fluency and voice. The video capabilities in the lab provide the opportunity for students to observe qualified clinical speech pathologists in educator roles, other students and themselves working with clients who exhibit a range of communication disorders. 

Visit scu.edu.au/healthlabs

Course structure

See the University’s Rules Relating to Awards, in conjunction with the Specific Award Rules listed below.

Admission requirements

  1. English proficiency is a requirement for all students. Applicants who do not meet Rule 2 Section 1 Clause (7)a must demonstrate English language proficiency by:
    • achieving an International English Language Testing System (IELTS) score of 7.5 (including a minimum of 8.0 in both speaking and listening modules and 7.0 in reading and writing); or
    • Achieving an International Second Language Proficiency Rating (ISLPR) score of at least 4+ in each of the four areas: speaking, listening, reading and writing.
  2. An applicant who has completed a Certificate III qualification will not be admitted solely on the basis of this qualification.

Course requirements

  1. To be eligible for the award of Bachelor of Speech Pathology a candidate shall successfully complete the equivalent of thirty two (32) units (384 credit points) comprising:
    1. all units listed in Part A; and
    2. two (2) elective units from Part B University elective units
  2. To be eligible for the award of Bachelor of Speech Pathology with Honours a candidate shall successfully complete the equivalent of thirty two (32) units (384 credit points) comprising:
    1. all units listed in Part C – Honours stream
    Students who enter the Honours stream will be required to:
    1. successfully complete all units in years 3 and 4 of the Honours stream on their first attempt; and
    2. maintain a GPA of at least 5.0 (Credit grade average) for years 3 and 4
    Students must pass all units of study on their first attempt to continue with the Honours program, maintain a GPA of at least 5.0 (Credit grade average) and comply with these requirements.

Progression in clinic based units

  1. Candidates are not permitted to have an extended period of more than 18 months between study of any two (2) clinic units.
  2. Candidates are not permitted to have an extended period of more than 18 months between study of a theory unit that relates specifically to a particular clinic unit.

Subsequent to (a) and (b) above, candidates who have an interrupted study sequence of more than 18 months will be assessed on a case-by-case basis and may be required to undertake a specified supported professional experience placement to ensure clinic currency prior to continuation of the course.

Advanced standing

Candidates who have completed a Certificate III will not be granted any advanced standing solely on the basis of this qualification

Schedule of units

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How to apply

Domestic students

International students

On-campus

Confirm you meet the entry requirements including English language and academic entry and any specific pre-requisites.

Southern Cross University accepts applications directly through the International Application for Admissions form.

Additional information on how to apply is available at SCU International.

Please note applicants from some countries need to go through an Education Agent.

The information on this page may be subject to change over time. Please check this page again before acting and see our disclaimer.