Harding University’s graduate program in speech-language pathology has been granted full accreditation status by the Council on Academic Accreditation of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association.
“We had been working on accreditation for the last five years. It really was an overwhelming process,” said Dr. Dan Tullos, chair of the department of communication sciences and disorders. “There was a set of standards that we were to follow, and the site visitors went through every aspect of our program looking for evidence that we are complying.”
The CAA has awarded 242 master’s level speech-language pathology programs with accredited status and 10 with candidacy status since its inception in 1965. They made their decision to award Harding full accreditation status following a site visit in the fall and an evaluation report. The program was given a five-year term, the maximum number of years awarded to a newly accredited program.
“The site visit was in September, and the members of the Council on Academic Accreditation met Feb. 21,” Tullos said. “We knew that we had a great program and that we were training quality students, but it is nice when your accrediting board agrees.”
The University’s two-year speech-language pathology graduate program began in 2008 and currently enrolls 30 students. The first class of certified speech-language pathologists graduated in May 2010.
“As a second year graduate student, I am so excited to know that our program is accredited,” said Courtney Boyd, a graduate student from Jacksonville, Fla. “We have an excellent program as well as teachers who are dedicated to and passionate about our profession and their students. I had no doubt that this day would come, and I am proud of all the people and hard work that made it possible.”
Harding is the largest private university in Arkansas with 6,815 students and attracts more National Merit Scholars than any other private university in the state. Harding also maintains campuses in Australia, Chile, England, France, Greece, Italy and Zambia.