Doctor of Philosophy

The Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) program prepares students for academic and research careers in speech and hearing sciences. Established in 1947, the program is dedicated to fostering scientific inquiry in speech and hearing sciences and related disciplines. The program is administered through The Graduate School at Washington University in St. Louis.


The curriculum combines interdisciplinary academic coursework, teaching experiences, and research training, culminating in a dissertation. Each student’s experience can be tailored to his or her individual interests. The PhD requires 72 hours of graduate credit. Generally, 24 hours of graduate credit may be transferred toward the PhD from another institution; graduates of our AuD and MSDE programs are provided advanced standing and may transfer up to 48 or 36 hours respectively.

Teaching experiencesteaching

Teaching experiences prepare students to become effective teachers and communicators of their discipline and their own research. All PhD students receive training in pedagogy and complete teaching experiences at the introductory and advanced levels under the guidance of a faculty mentor.


Students immerse themselves in the world-class research environment of Washington University. As they conduct their own original work, they participate in colloquia, Grand Rounds, brown bag seminars, research seminars, journal clubs, and similar opportunities. The program fosters opportunities to publish and participate in professional conferences. In the final year, students present and defend their dissertation.

Affiliated research

PACS is affiliated with the Department of Otolaryngology, which operates one of the nation’s largest hearing and deafness research programs. Topics include:

  • Adult aural rehabilitation
  • Biology of hearing and deafness
  • Childhood deafness
  • Cochlear implants
  • Dizziness and balance
  • Hearing aids