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FAQ

How long does it take to earn a PhD?
Students entering the PhD program with a master’s degree typically require a minimum of 4 years to complete the PhD program.

Is it possible to begin my graduate studies in a quarter other than Fall?
No, Fall start is required.

Is it possible to apply to the PhD Program without a Master’s degree?
Yes, applicants with a Bachelor’s degree may apply.

Can one be admitted to the program without an undergraduate degree in communication sciences and disorders?
Yes, many students entering the PhD program have degrees in cognitive science, education, engineering, linguistics, psychology, neuroscience, and related fields.

What is the average grade point average (GPA) for students admitted to the program?
Both undergraduate and graduate GPAs are important in admission decisions for PhD students.  The average (not minimum) scores are generally about 3.5 (out of 4) or higher.

Is the GRE required?
The GRE is not required for application for the CSD PhD program. GRE scores are not seen by admission committee members and are not used in the review of any applicants.

In addition to GPA, what factors are important in admissions decisions?
In addition to GPA scores, previous experience, letters of recommendation and one’s personal statement are considered in making admission decisions.  Letters of recommendation should be from individuals who can assess a candidate’s ability to be successful in PhD studies.     

Is funding available?
Yes, all students accepted for doctoral study in the program receive tuition support and a stipend, year-round, for at least five years. This is usually some combination of teaching assistants, graduate research assistants and fellowships.

Will I be assigned as a Teaching Assistant?
Teaching is an essential element of the education and training experience of PhD students at Northwestern. The Graduate School requires that all PhD students serve in some instructional capacity for at least one academic quarter during their graduate education at Northwestern. This teaching requirement is an integral aspect of professional development. Students are expected to do comparable teaching work to other students within and across programs.

Who do I contact for further information?

Cindy Coy
Graduate Admissions Coordinator
Communication Sciences and Disorders
Northwestern University
847-491-5073
ccoy@northwestern.edu