New Undergraduate Course Advice - Department of Communication Disorders - University of Canterbury - New Zealand

Bachelor of Speech and Language Pathology (Hons) Programme - for students beginning Intermediate year in 2014 or after

If you began the BSLP(Hons) before 2014, click here

(If you already have a degree you may want to consider the MSLP)

Are you currently in the first year of a degree? If you would like to apply for the first Professional Year of the BSLP, but have not completed the Intermediate year, please contact the Program Coordinator at

Please click here to see the brochure

The deadline for applications is the 1st October


The Bachelor of Speech and Language Pathology with Honours is a four-year professional degree with a strong practical focus. The first year of study is the Intermediate Year. This is followed by three Professional Years. Graduates are highly employable as clinicians in schools and hospital settings both in New Zealand and overseas or can pursue further study through to doctoral level.

Features of the BSLP(Hons) at UC

  • Established four-year professional degree
  • Highly employable graduates
  • Accredited by the New Zealand Speech–Language Therapists' Association with opportunity to work in Canada, USA, UK, Australia & Ireland (additional exams/courses may be required).
  • Excellent resources including on-site clinics and research dedicated facilities and staff
  • Postgraduate opportunities in Speech and Language Sciences, and Audiology

Entry requirements

Intermediate Year

Entry to the Intermediate Year of study is open to all students with University Entrance. The recommended preparation for the Intermediate programme is a science background to at least NCEA Level 2 and English.

Professional Years

Entry to the First Professional Year is competitive. Students need to apply for entry into the First Professional Year by 1 October in the year preceding desired entry.

The selection criteria include academic merit from the Intermediate Year (or equivalent/or other degree), fluency in English, some knowledge of what a speech and language pathologist does and an interview with Departmental Representatives..

If you are unsuccessful in gaining a place in the First Professional Year, your passed courses in the Intermediate Year can usually be credited to the BSc, BHSc, or BA.

Degree structure

For the full degree requirements see the Regulations for the Bachelor of Speech and Language Pathology with Honours (University Regulations website).

Year 1 Intermediate Year (Awaiting CUAP approval)

The BSLP(Hons) requires a total of 480 points and may be awarded with honours. The first year is called the Intermediate Year and comprises a minimum of 120 points or eight 15-point courses (or equivalent). The Intermediate courses may be taken in one full-time year of study or accumulated over more than one year.

The one-year Intermediate programme is followed by three full-time years of specialised professional education – the professional years.

Compulsory courses

  • CMDS 161 Anatomy and Physiology of the Speech and Hearing Mechanism (Semester 1 or Summer Course)
  • STAT 101 Statistics 1 (Semester 2 or Summer Course)
  • CMDS 162 Neuroscience of Communication and Swallowing (Semester 2 )

One of the following:

    • MAOR 165 He Timatanga: Engaging with Māori
    • TREO 110 Conversational Māori for Absolute Beginners
    • TREO 111 Te Reo: Te Kahano – Introductory Language 1
    • MAOR 172/SCIM 101 Science, Māori and Indigenous Knowledge
    • HLTH106 Nga Take, Te Wero - Maori Health Issues and Opportunities

Recommended courses

  • LING 101 The English Language (Semester 1 or Summer Course)
  • PSYC 105 Introductory Psychology – Brain, Behaviour and Cognition (Semester 1)
  • CMDS 113 Introduction to Communication Disorders (Semester 1 or Summer Course)
  • PSYC 106 Introductory Psychology – Social, Personality and Developmental (Semester 2)

The professional years

The Professional Years correspond to Years two to four of the Bachelor of Speech and Language Pathology (Hons) programme. Entry into the Professional Years is limited. Prior to admission into the First Professional Year, applicants must have completed the Intermediate Year.

Year 2 First Professional Year

Semester 1
  • CMDS 221 Linguistics and Language Acquisition
  • CMDS 231 Clinical Phonetics
  • CMDS 243 Introduction to Audiologic Assessment and Management
  • CMDS 281 Observation and Clinical Practice 1
Semester 2

Year 3 Second Professional Year

Semester 1
  • CMDS 320 Spoken and Written Language Disorders in Educational Settings
  • CMDS 365 Dysphagia and Related Disorders: Diagnosis
  • CMDS 369 Aphasia and Related Disorders
  • CMDS 381 Clinical Practice 3
Semester 2

Year 4 Third Professional Year

Semester 1
Semester 2

Selection into the Professional Years is based primarily upon academic merit, in particular the grades from the last full year of academic work, together with relevant assessments to determine suitability for preparation as a speech and language therapist.


Department of Communication Disorders
University of Canterbury
Private Bag 4800
Christchurch, NEW ZEALAND
Tel: +64 3 364 2431