Southern Illinois University




For students interested in applying, but who do not have a CDS Bachelor's degree, a leveling course sequence is available to obtain prerequisites. The CDS leveling courses are available entirely online. The online course sequence provides maximum flexibility for students to complete up to 24 credit hours of foundational content in communication disorders and sciences. Please see our FAQ below on the leveling courses. Courses are each offered once per year in the online format. Please contact academic program director Valerie Boyer for additional information at valboyer@siu.edu.

Course tuition is based on the tuition for online courses that can be found on the Extended Campus webpage for Cost and Aid. Scholarships through extended campus can also be found on this webpage. Additional financial questions about the leveling courses should be directed to the SIU Financial Aid Office.

Students completing the leveling program must then apply for admission to the Graduate Program in the Fall semester.

Leveling Courses by Semester

Fall Spring
CDS 300: Phonetics CDS 301: Speech and Hearing Science
CDS 303: Language Development CDS 302: Voice and Articulation
CDS 314: Anatomy & Physiology of the Speech and Hearing Mechanism CDS 410: Multicultural Communication
CDS 328: CDS and the Classroom Teacher CDS 420: Audiological Disorders

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) for prerequisite courses in Communication Disorders and Sciences:

Do I have to apply to SIU? Yes. There is an application process, but it is an abbreviated process. Our recruitment specialist, Jordia Coleman, can assist you with the application process for SIU.

Do I have to take all the courses? No. The courses are not part of a degree or certificate, so you have complete flexibility in which courses you take. The sequence above is recommended but not required, with the exception of taking CDS 301 prior to taking CDS 420.

Can I apply to other graduate programs? Yes. We modeled our course sequence to refect consistency with other online leveling course sequences and also to reflect the American Speech-Language Hearing Association knowledge standards.

Can I apply to SIU for graduate school? Yes! We would love for your to consider staying in Carbondale for your graduate program. Our graduate program has an excellent reputation and outcomes for its graduates. We do have an annual application process with competitive admission. There is not a guarantee of admission if you take the prerequisite courses at SIU.

Are there advantages to taking the prerequisite courses at SIU if I want to attend graduate school at SIU? Yes. There are two primary advantages. The first is that you are an SIU student, which gives you priority review in the admissions process. Our admissions committee members will review your application in our first round of admission review. This is an advantage for all SIU students. The second advantage is that the same faculty who teach in the graduate program also teach the leveling courses.

Can I start in the spring semester? Yes. You can start the leveling courses sequence in fall or spring semester.

What is the tuition per class? The tuition calculator at SIU Online is the best method for calculating costs. Extended Campus is the office on campus that supports online education at SIU. We also strongly encourage students with financial questions to contact the SIU Financial Aid Office.