Students enrolled in the STEPS program will fulfill ASHA academic and practicum requirements for the Certificate of Clinical Competence. Because of its focus, the STEPS program will be geared toward completing coursework in areas related to child language, bilingualism and diversity. In addition to the courses within the master's curriculum, STEPS students will be required to take the following courses:
- Spanish Language Acquisition and Disorders
- Child Bilingualism/Second Language Acquisition
Students are also required to participate during their Fall I, Spring I, and Fall II semester on bi-monthly clinical grand-rounds – Tertulias. These meetings will occur one evening every other week and will include STEPS alum, first year STEPS students and second year STEPS students. (Students in the regular master’s program will also be invited to participate.) The topics will focus on our work as bilingual speech-language pathologists and will be identified by current students, alum and STEPS faculty.
These courses are electives for all students, but are required for those who will be completing the bilingual track (STEPS) program.
Students who have the undergraduate coursework will begin their practicum their first semester in the program. Those without the undergraduate coursework will begin clinical practica once these have been completed. The clinical practica includes the following opportunities:
- assessment and therapy assignments in regional public schools with a high Latino enrollment
- clients in the department's clinic
- community screenings
- externship placement in schools with a significant Latino population as well as a medical or other non-educational setting
Incorporated within STEPS' core courses is a service-learning component. Students, in collaboration with the bilingual supervisor and STEPS director, will participate in a variety of service learning activities in the community.
S515 Spanish Language Acquisition and Disorders (3 cr.) In this course, data on the acquisition of Spanish as a first language will be presented. These data will encompass Spanish acquisition in both monolingual and bilingual contexts. Linguistic phenomena that are manifested in bilingual environments and that impact Spanish performance will be emphasized. Characteristics particular to how language and phonological impairment are manifested in Spanish-speaking children will be presented. In addition, basic information concerning Spanish phonological and grammatical structure, and dialectal differences within the language, as these affect acquisition, will be included. Practical activities such as child sample transcriptions and analyses will be incorporated within the course content.
S539 Second Language Acquisition & Bilingualism in Children (3 cr.) The course focuses on how children acquire two languages. Topics concerning variables that impact dual language acquisition children and patterns of acquisition will be discussed. Issues and strategies for evaluating language skills in this population, and for providing clinical services are presented.