Aug 08, 2022  
2021-2022 Undergraduate Catalog 
2021-2022 Undergraduate Catalog [Archived Catalog]

Communication Sciences and Disorders Department

Return to {$returnto_text} Return to: Colleges/Schools, Departments & Programs

Lindsey Jorgensen, Ph.D.-Chairperson
Room 206, McKusick
(605) 658-3870  



Teri James Bellis, Central Auditory Disorders, Clinical Audiology, Central Auditory Neurophysiology and Electrophysiology, American Sign Language, Advanced Research Methods, Genetics of Hearing Loss, Professional Issues, Audiologic Assessment
Kyle Brouwer, Language Disorders in Children, Advanced Language Disorders, Disorders of Phonology and Articulation, Diagnosis of Speech and Language Disorders
Jessica Messersmith, Psychoacoustics, Signal Encoding, Cochlear Implants and Other Implantable Devices, Anatomy and Physiology of Hearing, Pediatric Audiology

Associate Professors:

Elizabeth Hanson, Augmentative and Alternative Communication, Neuromotor Disorders, Communication Sciences, Research Methods
Lindsey Jorgensen, Clinical Audiology, Amplification, Aural Rehabilitation, OAEs and Balance Function Testing, Pathologies of Hearing
Mandy Williams, Fluency Disorders, Voice Disorders, Acquired Disorders of Language and Cognition, Craniofacial Anomalies

Clinical Instructors:

Stacie Carlson, M.A. University of South Dakota
Elizabeth Develder, Language Development, Organic Speech Pathologies, Clinical Speech-Language Pathology
Shelly Grinde, Clinical Speech-Language Pathology, Medical Speech Pathology
Jane Clem Heinemeyer, CClinical Speech-Language Pathology, Dysphagia
Jess Schneider, M.A. University of South Dakota

Adjunct Faculty:

Lori Kober, B.S., Gallaudet University


Communication Sciences and Disorders, B.A., B.S. 


Communication Sciences and Disorders

The undergraduate and graduate Communication Sciences and Disorders Programs prepare students for professional positions in the professions of speech-language pathology and audiology. Speech-language pathology is concerned with the evaluation, diagnosis, and treatment of persons with speech, language, swallowing, and related disorders. Audiology is concerned with the evaluation, diagnosis, and treatment of persons with hearing, other auditory, and balance disorders.

Professionals in this discipline are employed as clinicians, educators, administrators, and consultants in a wide variety of settings, including hospitals, rehabilitation centers, public school systems, colleges and universities, state and federal government agencies, and private practice. The master’s degree is required for entrance into the profession of speech-language pathology. The doctoral degree is required for the practice of audiology. National certification in speech-language pathology or audiology from the Council for Clinical Certification of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA) requires completion of the appropriate graduate degree and all requisite clinical and related activities.

The Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders (Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology) offers a general bachelor’s degree in Communication Sciences and Disorders, a master’s degree program in speech-language pathology, and a doctoral degree program in audiology. The undergraduate degree program is a pre-professional program that is a blend of a liberal arts foundation and a general core curriculum in the communication sciences and in disorders of communication. Students do not emphasize either speech-language pathology or audiology at the undergraduate level but instead take courses in both areas. The academic and clinical practicum requirements for national certification in speech-language pathology and audiology from the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA) may be completed across the undergraduate and graduate programs. The department’s graduate programs in audiology and in speech-language pathology are nationally accredited by the Council on Academic Accreditation in Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology.


The USD Speech, Language, and Hearing Clinic serves as a clinical education center for students majoring in Communication Sciences and Disorders and as a clinical services center for children and adults in need of diagnostic, therapeutic, and counseling services for a wide variety of communication disorders. The clinic contains clinical observation rooms, clinical service rooms, audiometric facilities, research laboratories, classrooms, offices and lounges, student computer labs, and study space for students. There is a USD Scottish Rite Children’s Speech and Language Clinic located in the USD Speech and Hearing Center in Vermillion and a second location at the Masonic Center in Sioux Falls.


Students completing only the Bachelor’s degree will not be recommended by the University for public school certification. To be approved for this certification, students must complete the graduate degree in the professional area in which they want school certification, including specific academic and clinical practicum requirements. Consult your advisor for these requirements. Individual states have their own school certification requirements. Consult your advisors and individual certifying state education agencies as to their specific requirements. Speech-language Pathologists in South Dakota must be licensed by the South Dakota Board of Examiners for Speech-language Pathology for the credentials to practice in schools or any other setting. The master’s degree is required to be licensed as a Speech-language Pathologist in South Dakota. Individuals with their Bachelor’s Degree are eligible to obtain licensure as a Speech-language Pathology Assistant with additional clinical experiences.


There are USD Chapters of the National Student Speech-Language-Hearing Association (NSSLHA) as well as the Student Academy of Audiology (SAA). Both of these organizations are active in the Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders, across campus, and within the community.


The Communication Sciences and Disorders Department offers a wide variety of scholarships and awards for students majoring in the discipline. Please contact the department for information about available scholarships and awards. Also see College of Arts & Sciences  for college/school level scholarships.

  • Ben & Lily Tjomsland Scholarship
  • Clifford, Gregg & Stanage Award
  • Communication Disorders Fund
  • Communication Sciences and Disorders Awards
  • Dean D. Lockwood Award Scholarship for Excellence in Speech-Language Pathology
  • Dr. Harold M. Jordan DCOM Scholarship
  • Katherine S. Kuehn Scholarship
  • Lewis H. Peterson Memorial Scholarship
  • Lulu B. Wheeler-Communication Disorders Scholarship
  • Sertoma Communications Disorders Scholarship

Student Learning Outcomes for Communication Sciences and Disorders (B.A., B.S.)

  1. Students will discuss the biological, acoustical, developmental, linguistic, and cultural bases for identification, diagnosis, and treatment of articulation and phonology, including knowledge of the International Phonetic Alphabet. 
  2. Students will demonstrate understanding of the process and content of normal and disordered language  and communication development in children, including methods of treating language disorders. 
  3. Students will delineate normal anatomy and physiology of the speech (including swallowing), hearing, and vestibular mechanisms, basic acoustics, and physical characteristics and measurement of acoustic stimuli. 
  4. Students will demonstrate knowledge of principles of treatment of communication disorders, including the ability to develop and write intervention plans that have clear, appropriate, measurable, and achievable goals 
  5. Students will be able to conduct hearing screenings and basic audiologic evaluations, and will be able to use the results of auditory and related testing to develop an aural rehabilitation plan 
  6. Students will be able to systematically explore issues, objects or works through the collection and analysis of evidence that results in informed conclusions or judgments, and break down complex topics or issues into parts to gain a better understanding of them. 
  7. Students will comprehensively explore issues, ideas, artifacts and events before accepting or formulating an opinion or conclusion, and combine or synthesize existing ideas, images or expertise in original ways reflecting a high degree of innovation, divergent thinking, and risk taking. 
  8. Students will design, evaluate, and implement a strategy to answer an open-ended question or achieve a desired goal. 
  9. Students will intentionally engage with diversity in ways that increase awareness, content knowledge, cognitive sophistication, and empathic understanding of the complex ways individuals interact within systems and institutions leading to opportunities for equal access to participation in educational and community programs for all members of society. 
  10. Students will connect ideas and experiences in order to synthesize and transfer learning to new, complex situations within and beyond the campus. 


Return to {$returnto_text} Return to: Colleges/Schools, Departments & Programs