Our Hearing, Speech, and Language Sciences programs provide students with a base in speech-language-hearing development, differences, and disorders with an emphasis on the communication needs of deaf and hard of hearing individuals. The HSLS programs serve many functions and responsibilities within the University by:
  • Providing graduate training in Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology, and Hearing, Speech, and Language Sciences
  • Offering a range of clinical services to the Gallaudet and metropolitan DC communities
  • Offering undergraduate courses relating to speech, hearing, and consumerism and graduate courses in audiology and amplification to other departments on campus
  • Supporting research aimed at a broad range of areas affecting deaf and hard of hearing individuals

Programs Announcement

Our accreditation status: The Master’s in Science (M.S.) residential education program in Speech-Language Pathology and the Doctoral degree in Audiology (Au.D.) residential education program at Gallaudet is accredited by the Council on Academic Accreditation in Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association, 2200 Research Boulevard, #310, Rockville, MD 20850, 800-498-2071 or 301-296-5700. Newsletters Fall 2021 (PDF link) Spring 2021 (PDF link) Fall 2020 (PDF link) March 2020 (PDF link) February 2020 (PDF link)

Areas of Study


Au.D. in Audiology

The Clinical Doctoral Degree (AuD) education residential program in Audiology at Gallaudet University is accredited by the Council on Academic Accreditation in Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology (CAA) of the American...

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M.S. in Speech-Language Pathology

The Master of Science Degree (MS) residential program in Speech-Language Pathology at Gallaudet University is accredited by the Council on Academic Accreditation in Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology (CAA) of the...

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Ph.D. in Hearing, Speech, and Language Sciences

The Ph.D. program in Hearing, Speech, and Language Sciences prepares students with a masters or clinical doctorate in a related field (e.g., Au.D., M.S. in SLP) for faculty and research...

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Child Language & Culture Lab

The Child Language & Culture Lab examines language development and disorders among children who are culturally/linguistically diverse. Research emphases include (a) examining the relationship between the linguistic environment and children's language skills across languages; (b) developing and testing diagnostic measures to improve the identification of...

Developmental Neurolinguistic and Cognition Lab

The Developmental Neurolinguistic and Cognition Lab aims to understand the relationship of language and cognition with brain development, as well as understand brain organization and literacy development. We are currently examining the neurophysiology of speech, language, and cognition in deaf infants, children, and young adults...

Human Neurophysiology Lab

The Human Neurophysiology Lab seeks to investigate speech (verbal and manual) and non-speech processing across the brain to understand underlying patterns of activity that may be linked to hearing, speech, and language disorders. This focus is further centered on the influence of sex and sexuality...


The PLUSH (Prosody in Language Understanding, Speech, and Hearing) Lab investigates how children and adults perceive and process prosody—the rhythmic and melodic aspects of language, including stress, intonation, and emotions. Current projects include: What are the prosodic similarities and differences between speech produced by people...

Laboratory of Voice and Speech Physiology

Ample opportunities exist for students eager to conduct research into voice and speech physiology. This lab examines the sensory-motor aspects of voice and speech production using acoustic and physiological measures. Some of our current research projects include: The effect of reduced or altered auditory feedback...

Research in HSLS

Hearing, Speech, and Language Sciences programs conduct extensive research on communication access for deaf and hard of hearing people. The programs have a long history of external research supports from federal agencies and private foundations, including the U.S. Department of Education and the National Institutes...

Vestibular and Balance Lab

Students who enter Gallaudet’s Vestibular and Balance Lab are treated to innovative technologies and world-class instruction. Highlighted by the Oculus Rift virtual reality system, the lab allows students to investigate challenges individuals face as a result of age, disease, and a variety of influences on...

Signed Language Development, Disorders, and Deprivation (SL3D) Lab

The goal of the SL3D lab is to identify evidence-based practices for language and literacy assessment and intervention for deaf and hard of hearing children who are struggling to acquire language skills. Projects often focus on the signing modality. The lab has potential to impact...

The Learning Lab for Kids with Implants

“How do children learning spoken language, who don’t have access to optimal auditory input, learn new words?” This question guides the work in our lab. We work with kids to try to understand how they learn new information and what we can do to help...

Multicultural Research Lab

In the Multicultural Lab, research is conducted to examine the effects of language background, aging, and environmental factors on auditory function. Specific projects address how bilingual/multilingual language background and language impairment impact speech perception in adults and children. Another project examines how aging and cigarette...

Bernstein/Brewer Aural Rehabilitation Lab (B/Bar Lab)

The B/BAR lab is directing a series of randomized controlled studies aimed at evaluating the effect of aural rehabilitation interventions on adult cochlear implant (CI) outcomes. As part of these evidence-based studies, we are engaged in creating new CI assessment and outcome measures, auditory training...


R. Steven Ackley Memorial Scholarship Fund

The HSLS Department lost one of its beloved faculty members in June 2013. To honor his legacy, HSLS members established an endowment fund for scholarship. With outpouring support from Dr. Ackley's family, former students, colleagues, and friends, the fund was endowed within a year of...



Upon graduation, students will have immersed themselves in the deaf and hard of hearing communities within Gallaudet University and the Washington metropolitan area. Students will have become advocates for the deaf and hard of hearing communities, skilled and empathetic community members, and well-trained professionals.

HSLS programs ensure students are prepared to become the next generation of professionals in speech-language pathology, audiology, and hearing, speech, and language sciences. Students leave their respective programs with rigorous academic learning, hands-on clinical experience, and research experience.



Academia Questions

Students learn about deafness from a biological, social, and cultural perspective. A unique aspect of Gallaudet’s programs is the central role that both ASL and deaf culture play in student learning. This sets Gallaudet’s programs apart from the audiology and speech-language sciences programs at other universities. The deaf-centric philosophy of the Department provides opportunities for deaf people to shape future directions for the discipline.
The Center contains a number of programs aimed at providing both hearing and deaf clients on campus and in the Washington metropolitan area with support and training aimed at improving communication skills. The center provides services in multiple areas: audiological services, vestibular and balance assessment, speech-language assessment and treatment, and communication and habilitation/aural rehabilitation assessment and services.
The Hearing and Speech Center is a teaching and training clinic. Services are delivered primarily by graduate students that are supervised by certified speech-language pathologists and audiologists. Services may also be provided by certified clinical staff with a broad range of speech, hearing, language, and communication expertise in areas such as aural rehabilitation, voice, aphasia and cognitive communication, cochlear implants, balance, and auditory processing.
Yes. The Center is open to deaf, hard of hearing, and hearing individuals in the Gallaudet community and Washington, D.C., metropolitan area.
Gallaudet has had a number of deaf and hard of hearing graduates in the past, and all students are held to the same standards and requirements, regardless of hearing status. Our mission includes making the professions of audiology and speech-language science as accessible as possible for those who are deaf or hard of hearing. Gallaudet graduates are breaking new ground in the audiology profession and de-pathologizing hearing, speech and language sciences.
Yes. All students are required to complete American Sign Language (ASL) courses. In addition, students are required to take a sequence of courses that focus on the use of American Sign Language in working with deaf clients. Through these classes, students learn discipline-specific signs that are unique to audiology and speech-language sciences. These classes also provide students with praxis in communicating information that is often associated with speech and hearing assessments.
Researchers are examining the language characteristics of deaf children, strategies for early detection of hearing loss, assessments of balance disorders associated with deafness, phonological awareness and literacy in college-age students, voice quality in cochlear-implant wearers, and signal processing and music perception in cochlear-implant wearers.
On average, we have 90 full-time students, including 30 students in the SLP program, 48 in the Au.D. program, and 10 in the Ph.D. program. We also offer courses to undergraduate and graduate students from other departments.
Audiology and speech-language pathology graduates may find themselves in a variety of settings, such as hospitals, private practices, and schools. Some Au.D.s and SLPs are employed in schools and clinics where they work with deaf and hard of hearing children. Graduates from the HSLS Department are currently at the American School for the Deaf, Kendall Demonstration School, Maryland School for the Deaf, California School for the Deaf in Fremont, the Learning Center, the River School, and many other programs for deaf and hard of hearing children throughout the country.
The Department currently has 10 faculty members. In addition, 10 audiologists and speech-language pathologists provide audiological, speech, language, and communication diagnostic and habilitation services through the Hearing and Speech Center. The professional staff also supervise the practicum of graduate students.
The Department offers three degrees: a Master of Sciences in Speech-Language Pathology (SLP), a clinical doctoral degree in Audiology (Au.D.), and a Ph.D. in Hearing, Speech, and Language Sciences. The M.S. and Au.D. degrees are entry-level degrees for speech-language pathologists and audiologists.

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