Online Bachelor of Arts in Communicative Sciences and Disorders

Program Overview

The fully online Bachelor of Arts (BA) in Communicative Sciences and Disorders (CSD) is now available through the School of Speech, Language, Hearing, and Occupational Sciences. This online option provides the flexibility of online courses with the high quality standards of our established on-campus BA CSD degree programming. 

Depending on whether a student has completed general education requirements, the core CSD courses of the online Bachelor of Arts in Communicative Sciences and Disorders (CSD) can be completed within 2 years (CSD courses only with general education completed) or spread out over a traditional 4 year period (with online general education courses completed at UM in addition to the core CSD courses).

In addition, students in the BA CSD program have the opportunity to stack on a few more courses within their program of study to also receive the Speech Language Pathology Assistant (SLPA) Certificate upon graduation. Please note requirements for SLPAs vary from state-to-state and a student may need additional education and clinical training for licensure. 

Courses are offered fully online (no face-to-face sessions required) in an asynchronous learning environment which means students can work on courses at times that best fit their schedule. However, expected learning will take place between the scheduled dates of the specific course. Deadlines for graded course assignments, forums, quizzes, and/or exams may vary per course. 

Online courses are designed to accommodate those who need flexible learning environments while still ensuring a high-quality education. Our courses are compressed into 8-week (Fall/Spring) and 7-week (Summer) part of term durations. Due to the compressed format and fast-paced nature of our online learning environment, fully online CSD courses do not follow the traditional on-campus UM academic calendar.  Students are responsible for all deadlines described in individual course syllabi and course calendars. 

A Foundation in Communication

Graduates of the BA CSD in the School of Speech, Language, Hearing, and Occupational Sciences will leave the University of Montana with a strong foundational knowledge base in speech, language, and hearing development, as well as social and behavioral communication. In addition, students will learn to effectively work with individuals with acquired and developmental disorders related to speech, language, and hearing. An undergraduate degree in Communicative Sciences and Disorders (CSD) prepares students to go on to seek graduate degrees in speech language pathology and audiology, as well as related medical and educational fields, such as, linguistics, education, psychology, neuroscience, and physical or occupational therapy. See the Value of the Undergraduate Degree in Communicative Sciences and Disorders brochure from the national American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA). 

UM Technology Requirements for Online Education

Moodle is the Learning Management System that the University of Montana uses for online coursework. To be successful in the asynchronous online learning environment within the CSD Bachelors Online program, it is recommended students follow the ICT Guide-Basic Minimum System Requirements for Moodle.

Cost and Mandatory Fees

Cost of attendance is found on the Business Services Tuition and Fees page. See "Student Tuition and Fees"-->select current Fall/Spring or Summer link--> see "Online Only"--> see "Undergraduate and Post-Baccalaureate" for specifics. 

Fees are subject to change per academic school year with Board of Regents’ approval.

Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently asked questions about the Online Bachelor of Arts CSD Program

What is the deadline to apply?

  • See UM Admissions for specific deadlines to apply to the University of Montana in order to start your coursework in either Fall or Spring semesters. We recommend that you apply with plenty of time before the start date (more than 1 month) in order to be admitted and qualify for financial aid. 

Am I required to begin in the Fall?

  • Most online and all on-campus students start in the Fall to finish in a scheduled time frame.
  • A Spring start option is available for the online BA CSD.

Do I have to take all courses?

  • Some students may only need to take the core CSD courses if general education requirements are met. Note that you will need to go through the preliminary inquiry process and indicate the single courses requested, and certain general education courses will be required for graduate speech-language pathology or audiology programs to receive state and national certification upon graduation.

Do I need to log-in at certain times to join a virtual classroom if I am taking online courses?

  • No. Although, there are set dates when assignments and quizzes must be completed. The online program was designed for individuals who are interested in completing the coursework, but need flexibility for their work and family schedules. The exact format of each course may vary, and each course instructor may require different timing requirements for exams, proctoring, and assignments.

If I have taken similar courses at a different university, can these courses count towards this BA CSD or do I need to retake them at UM?

  • It depends. If you think you have covered the content in one of our CSD BA courses in another program (and earned a grade >C), fill out the Course Equivalency form. Return this form along with all unofficial transcripts and specific course syllabus/syllabi, and email for review: 

If I take BA CSD courses at the University of Montana, will these courses be accepted at other universities for graduate programs?

  • The content for most prerequisite courses is relatively standardized nationally across CSD programs. Our courses are meant to meet the standards and requirements for admissions in speech-language pathology and audiology graduate programs across the country. The ultimate decision to accept prerequisite coursework is decided by your chosen institution. If you have concerns, we recommend that you verify with your intended graduation institution(s).

How much time should I devote to each class?

  • For every one credit hour in which you enroll in the campus-based program, you will spend approximately two to three hours outside of class studying (i.e., one 3-credit course= 6-9 hours per week of studying over 15 weeks, for a total of 90-135 hours per regular university semester).
  • The same amount of content is covered in each course for the online program, but the duration of each course is shorter. Keep in mind that you will still need to study for approximately 90-135 hours during the duration of the course (e.g., for an eight-week course, plan to study 11-17 hours per week).

Online Bachelor of Arts CSD Program Contact Information

Contact our Academic Advisor at for general program inquiries and questions.