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New students to the Master of Science program in Communication Sciences and Disorders should prepare the following and bring electronic copies (scanned images are ok) with you to campus when you arrive in August. You will be expected to upload these documents into Typhon.

Clearances should be current by the beginning of the fall semester when you begin your studies. You are responsible for keeping all clearances current and up-to-date throughout your time in the program. Some clinical sites may require more frequent updates of your clearances.

Any questions about the information provided here should be directed to the staff assistant for the graduate program.

This information is intended for students accepted to the M.S. program as a two-year student.
It does NOT apply to doctoral Ph.D. students. Students admitted to the master's program who have at least two semesters of undergraduate coursework to complete prior to starting the graduate program will complete all clearances at the time they begin the graduate program.

Documentation of Observation Hours

All incoming students must have documented proof of 25 hours of clinical observation. These must have been completed with a speech language pathologist or audiologist with current ASHA certification. Supervisors' ASHA certification numbers and signatures must be included with proof of your hours.

Background Checks and Clearances

If clearances are not free of offense, you will not be permitted to enroll in clinical courses. This will impact your ability to accrue clinical hours, which are a requirement for ASHA certification.

Clearances must be current prior to starting clinic in the fall of your 2nd year. Some clearances expire after one year; if you obtain these in August, they will be current throughout each clinical semester during your 1st year of study.

Pennsylvania Child Abuse History Clearance (Act 151) icon-olus-circle

Select 'Volunteer' or 'Employee' as the purpose type. The "Volunteers only" report is sufficient for clinic responsibilities. Students employed by Penn State or on assistantships should request the paid report.

Apply for PA Child Abuse History Clearance

Pennsylvania State Police Criminal History Record (Act 34) icon-olus-circle

The "Volunteers only" report is sufficient for clinic responsibilities. Students employed by Penn State or on assistantships should request the paid report.

Request a Record Check

Federal Criminal History Record Information (Act 114) icon-olus-circle

You must register before going to a fingerprint site. Use the service code: 1KG756, employee = 14 years contact with children.

Find a fingerprinting site near you

Arrest/Conviction Report and Certification Form (Act 24) icon-olus-circle

Health Assessment and Certification

Health Assessment icon-olus-circle

This form should be completed by a medical professional who has conducted a physical examination. A tuberculosis (TB) test is required as part of the assessment. Please allow 2-3 days for the skin test to be read and documented.

Download the Health Assessment Form

CPR certification, including Infant/Pediatric and Adult icon-olus-circle

Many hospitals and community centers offer training in CPR. You can also find training courses through the American Red Cross or the American Heart Association. Certification must be current as of September 1, prior to beginning clinic. To keep your certification current, plan to renew your certification during graduate school.

First Aid certification (recommended, but not required) icon-olus-circle

First aid certification is not required, however it is helpful and can often be combined with CPR certification for a small additional cost.

Professional Liability Insurance

Proof of Coverage icon-olus-circle

In order to engage in clinical activity as a graduate student, you must have current liability insurance. You must provide proof of coverage when you begin your graduate program. To maintain continuous coverage, plan to renew your certification during graduate school.

This coverage can be purchased through a vendor supported by ASHA, which necessitates membership in NSSLHA. The advantage is that the NSSLHA-to-ASHA Membership Conversion Discount provides a substantial reduction in the initial membership and certification fees for student when they transfer their membership to ASHA after graduation. To qualify for the one-time discount of $225 off the initial dues and fees of $511, you must be a NSSLHA member for the last 2 years of your master's program. View additional NSSLHA member benefits.

Learn more about professional liability insurance, offered through a partnership with ASHA.

Required Trainings

These online trainings are required by Penn State. You must have an active Penn State access account to complete the trainings.

Recognizing and Reporting Child Abuse: Mandated and Permissive Reporting in Pennsylvania icon-olus-circle

This course has been approved by the PA Department of Human Services and Department of State to meet mandated reporting (Act 31) license requirements. 

Access the online training

Building a Safe Penn State: Reporting Child Abuse icon-olus-circle

This online training is required by Penn State. You must have an active Penn State access account to complete the training.

Log into Penn State's Learning Resource Network (LRN) and browse for training to find the Building a Safe Penn State: Reporting Child Abuse training. Complete this module and save an electronic copy of your certificate of completion.

Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) Privacy Rule Training icon-olus-circle

This online training is required by Penn State. You must have an active Penn State access account to complete the training.

Log into Penn State's Learning Resource Network (LRN) and browse for training to find the HIPAA Privacy Rule Training. Complete this module and save an electronic copy of your certificate of completion.

Understanding Title IX at Penn State icon-olus-circle

This online training is required by Penn State. You must have an active Penn State access account to complete the training.

Log into Penn State's Learning Resource Network (LRN) and browse for training to find the Understanding Title IX at Penn State training. Complete this module and save an electronic copy of your certificate of completion.