Ph.D. Communication Science

Communication Sciences & Disorders (Ph.D.) | Graduate

Our students seek to understand the etiology, symptomatology, prevention, and remediation of speech, language, and hearing disorders. They significantly contribute to the communication sciences and disorders field, applying clinical and research evidence to real-world cases.

The Ph.D. in Communication Sciences and Disorders at Howard's Graduate School attracts exceptional students from diverse backgrounds and prepares them for fulfilling careers in research, teaching, or clinical practice in communication sciences and affiliated fields. Our program welcomes applicants with a master's degree in speech-language pathology or speech, language, and hearing sciences. You may choose from two research specialization areas: the adult neurological track or the child language track. In addition, you may elect to complete the more traditional dissertation or to develop a research project. You’ll have the opportunity to conduct case-based research, working alongside clinicians at Howard's Speech and Hearing Clinic or our partner schools, hospitals, early intervention and community clinics, and private practice settings throughout the DC Metropolitan Area. You'll pursue interdisciplinary coursework spanning psychology, special education, neurophysiology, linguistics, cognitive science, and health policy fields. You’ll also enjoy a highly collegial atmosphere and learn from faculty committed to your professional development. Our faculty conduct research on measures associated with treatments in childhood aphasia and apraxia of speech, eye tracking methodology to examine cognitive and linguistic processing issues, early intervention in aural rehabilitation, language processing and development in second language learning and monolingual contexts, and novel treatment approaches for neurogenic and swallowing disorders, among other areas of research. 

Program Snapshot

      ❱  72 credit hours 

      ❱  Full-time

      ❱  On-campus format

      ❱  Degree: Ph.D.

Application Deadline

Spring 2024 entry: 

      ❱  No spring entry

Fall 2024 entry: 

      ❱  Dec. 1, 2023 (early deadline)

      ❱  Feb. 15, 2024 (priority deadline)

      ❱  Apr. 1, 2024 (final deadline)

Applicants should submit their applications as early as possible for earlier consideration of departmental funding opportunities. Applicants have until the final deadline to apply. However, applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis throughout the admissions cycle. 

Transfer credits accepted (reviewed by director)


Dr. Ovetta Harris

Director of Graduate Studies & Department Chair

Program Details

  • Degree Classification: Graduate
  • Related Degrees: Ph.D.

Admission Requirements

Application for Admission

  • Online GradCAS application
  • Statement of purpose/ Statement of academic interest (500-1,000 words)
  • GRE scores not required
  • Official transcripts sent to GradCAS
  • 3 letters of recommendation
  • Master’s degree in speech-language pathology or speech, language, and hearing sciences from an accredited college or university or the international equivalent 
  • Resume or Curriculum Vitae
  • Autobiographical statement (500-750 words)

GRE Required?

  • No

GRE Preferred Minimums    

  • GRE Verbal Reasoning: N/A
  • GRE Quantitative Reasoning: N/A
  • GRE Analytical Writing: N/A

GPA Required Minimums    

  • Overall GPA minimum: 3.2
  • Undergrad GPA minimum: 3.0

Reference Requirements    

Evaluator type accepted:

  • Professor (Required)
  • Supervisor/Manager

Evaluator type not accepted:

  • Coworker
  • Friend
  • Family Member
  • Clergy
  • Other

The Ph.D. in Communication Sciences and Disorders at Howard University is designed for advanced study in communication sciences and disorders, intersecting disciplines, and the development of research and teaching strategies. Any applicant with a superior academic record and a master’s degree from a regionally accredited institution, or any international student with equivalent qualifications, is eligible to apply for admission to the doctoral program in Communication Sciences.  Application for admission is made to the Graduate School of Howard University.  For regular admission as a doctoral student, the applicant must hold the master’s degree and have a graduate cumulative grade point average of 3.5 or better.

In addition, applicants must submit the following to the Office of Graduate Admissions, Howard University:

1.    A nonrefundable application fee of $75.

2.    Statement of Research Interest.

3.    Autobiographical Sketch.

4.    Official university transcripts from all institutions from which the applicant has received academic credit.

5.    Three letters of recommendation, at least two of which should be from persons familiar with the applicant’s academic performance and potential. Applicants to the Ph. D. program should request at least two letters from persons who presently hold the Ph. D. Degree.

6.    GRE Scores within the past 5 years. The Graduate Record Examination (GRE) is required; however, the minimum score is considered in relation the applicant’s GPA, letters of recommendation and other admissions documents.



The Board of Trustees of Howard University on September 24, 1983, adopted the following policy statement regarding applications for admission: "Applicants seeking admission to Howard University are required to submit accurate and complete credentials and accurate and complete information requested by the University. Applicants who fail to do so shall be denied admission. Enrolled students who as applicants failed to submit accurate and complete credentials or accurate and complete information on their application for admission shall be subject to dismissal when the same is made known, regardless of classification.


*** All credentials must be sent to: Howard University Graduate School Office of Graduate Recruitment and Admissions 2400 Sixth Street NW Washington, D.C. 20059