Academics / Academic Programs

Minor in Speech, Language & Hearing Sciences

If you’re a Boston University undergraduate student who would like to learn more about human communication—both the normal processes and disorders—consider choosing a minor in Speech, Language & Hearing Sciences.

Since communication is fundamental to virtually every human activity, a deeper understanding of it can enrich your study of any field. Students majoring in psychology, linguistics, education, pre-law, and other fields have completed an SLHS minor.

The minor consists of the following five courses (18 credits total):

Minor courses

SARSH521: Phonetics

Application of International Phonetic Alphabet to sounds of American English. Detailed analysis of vowel and consonant sounds. Students learn and practice the skills necessary to analyze and transcribe speech sounds to describe the speech patterns of various American dialects and speech disorders.

SARSH522: Anatomy and Physiology of the Speech Mechanism

Study of the physiological structures and functions that underlie speech production. Emphasis is placed on the respiratory, phonatory, and articulatory systems. Introduction to neuroanatomy and neural control of the production of speech as well as dysfunction of these normal processes in clinical disorders is included.

SARSH524: Language Acquisition

This course will focus on first language acquisition in infancy and childhood. We will cover the progression of language development in each of the traditional areas of linguistic analysis: phonology, semantics, syntax, and pragmatics. The course will be focused on experimental research in typical language acquisition and on different theories that strive to explain the underlying cognitive and linguistic mechanisms at work in an early learner.

SARSH531: Introduction to Communication Disorders

Introduction to various speech and language disorders found across linguistically and culturally diverse populations. Characteristics underlying biological systems and methods for evaluation and treating a variety or communication disorders are examined. Exploration of the professions of speech pathology and audiology.

SARSH535: Diagnostic Audiology

Requires both lecture and lab to cover hearing assessment through the use of pure-tone and speech audiometric techniques as well as the measurement of middle-ear function. The course also includes information about the anatomy and physiology of the auditory system, acoustics, and the effect of noise on hearing.

Note: There are no prerequisites for any of the minor courses. You must have a GPA of 2.0 or higher to qualify for a minor in Speech, Language & Hearing Sciences and must receive a grade of C– or better in each course. Additional SH courses are also available to students who minor in SLHS.