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Listening & Spoken Language Competencies Program

The Listening and Spoken Language (LSL) Competencies program at Utah State University (USU) was specially designed for currently licensed special educators and speech-language pathologists who are seeking additional training in serving children who are deaf or hard of hearing (DHH) in general education settings.

Professionals serving children who are DHH must understand the impact of auditory access on language, literacy, and academic achievement and have the skills to facilitate age-appropriate development. Unfortunately, shortages of appropriately trained service providers exist throughout the country, even though approximately 87% of children who are DHH attend at least some portion of their day in general education classrooms. The LSL Competencies program trains current professionals to develop these specialized skills so they can provide intensive and individualized services to children who are DHH.

The LSL Competencies program is completed over three semesters, consisting of asynchronous online coursework and weekly practicum mentoring within the professionals’ current work setting utilizing video conferencing technology for supervision.  In addition, students meet online as a group 3-4 times per semester to discuss program components and to reinforce implementation of concepts, skills, and strategies for serving children who are DHH across a variety of settings.

Program Details

  • There are 6 graduate-level classes, plus practicum (22 credit hours).
  • All classes are offered asynchronous online.
  • The program takes 3 semesters to complete (fall, spring, and summer). 
  • During fall and spring semesters, students complete the practicum requirements in their regular employment setting if their classroom or caseload includes serving at least one child who is DHH and who uses LSL. 
  • The USU practicum supervisor provides weekly provide real-time support throughout the school year to facilitate theory to practice.
  • The course content is most applicable to professionals who provide services in early intervention, preschool, or early elementary age children.


Course Descriptions

  • ComD 6340 Auditory Learning and Spoken Language for Children with Hearing Loss (3)  (Fall semester)
  • ComD 6320 Language Learning and Literacy Acquisition in Children with Hearing Loss (3)  (Fall semester)
  • ComD 6770 Audiology and Teachers of Children who are DHH (3)  (Spring semester)
  • ComD 6350 Early Elementary and Itinerant Support for Children who are DHH using LSL (3)  (Spring semester)
  • ComD 6730 Multiple Disabilities and Syndromes (2)  (Summer semester)
  • ComD 7520 Introduction to Cochlear Implants (2)  (Summer semester)
  • ComD 6700 Practicum (6) (Fall and Spring semesters, 3 credit hours each)

**This is a non-degree seeking program. Upon completion of this program, teachers or SLPs with a Utah Educator License will be eligible for the LSL Competencies Endorsement to attach to their license. Outside Utah, state licensing structures vary from state to state. It is the responsibility of out-of- state students who are seeking official recognition of the LSL Competencies Endorsement (or equivalent) to know their state licensing policies.  We encourage students to contact their state licensing office to discuss and identify available options. Program completion is reflected on the USU transcript and students receive a LSL Competencies Certificate issued by the USU College of Education

LSL Competencies Program of Study

Application is available through the
Office of Research and Graduate Studies.



Advisor Contact

Michelle Wilson

Mason Hayes