National Student Speech-Language Hearing Association (NSSLHA)

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National Student Speech Language Hearing Association (NSSLHA) is a pre-professional membership association for students interested in the study of communication sciences and disorders.

NSSLHA is an association for students managed by students. National policy and activities are governed by 10 students (Regional Councilors) and five ASHA members (Faculty).



National Associations

American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA)

The National Student Speech Language Hearing Association (NSSLHA)


1. Is the program really science/clinically oriented?

Although there are rumors that a program can be one and not another, clinical treatments are evidence based and therefore scientific. ASHA standards require a solid foundation in both classroom and clinical standards. All UVa graduates receive at least 400 clinical hours before graduation.

2. Did you enjoy your observation/work placement, did you get to choose it, and where was it?

Students can choose where they want to spend their internship, and this can be completed at any facility in any state  as long as the facility agrees to an affiliation agreement with our program. UVA has a large variety of placement options and contracts with sites all over the country. Students are locally placed into their school externship sites, and preferences for age groups are taken into consideration. As for the medical externships  if the student has no conflicting classes that semester, he/she can choose to go anywhere (like the internship). For those students that need to stay local due to class, placements are available in local medical sites.

3. Do you know anything about how the program accepts students?

The admissions committee, which consists of a group of communication disorders faculty, considers your entire application. Grades from your undergraduate career and GRE scores are important, yet so are your personal statement and letters of recommendation. The committee reads the applications and has the opportunity to vote in your favor. Each voter may hinge their final decision based on a different piece of your application  this is due to their experience and their role in the communication disorders program. Then those votes are averaged to determine the final list of students to be officially considered for admission.

4. What kinds of things do the professors specialize in?

Each professor has his/her own areas of interest. Some of those include: children's language, autism, fluency, AAC, voice, dysphagia, aphasia and accent modification. Feel free to email a specific professor and ask more about his/her interests.

5. What is Charlottesville like?

Charlottesville is a great place to live! There is so much diversity here  both economically and culturally. There's an opportunity to meet people from many different programs here, like the law, business, engineering, and med schools. The shopping is great and the restaurants are even better. We have one of the highest restaurants per capita rankings in the entire country.
Some fun things to do: Live Arts is a local theatre group that puts on great plays; during the late spring, summer, early fall Fridays After Five runs downtown  this is an outdoor event with live music and beer/wine carts; First Fridays  the first Friday of every month all of the art galleries downtown are open with new art for viewing.

Living expenses are relatively high. The closer you live to grounds, the more you will pay for rent. Most students pay between $400 and $600 for rent per month. Take a look at for info on housing. You'll have to create a username and password, but then it will give you a lot of info on places to live.
Charlottesville is located an hour from Richmond, and approximately two hours from both Washington DC and Virginia Beach.

6. When do I register for classes?

New students receive registration information during orientation at the end of August.

7. When do I know my course schedule?

During orientation in August, students will meet with the advisor to determine specific course schedules.

8. Will I have time for a part-time job?

Students must remember that clinical assignments often change. If a student decides to have a part-time job, the employer must be flexible with scheduling. A few part-time fellowships are available for students who qualify for Federal Work Study. These positions are offered as part of the admissions process.

9. How many weeks of vacation time will I have?

There are only a few breaks built into the schedule. Although vacations are partly determined by Externship/Internship placements, Students usually have 1 week before the Fall semester begins, 2 weeks for Christmas and 1 week after the Spring semester ends. Academic and Clinic work continues through the summer.


Although this organization has members who are University of Virginia students and may have University employees associated or engaged in its activities and affairs, the organization is not a part of or an agency of the University. It is a separate and independent organization which is responsible for and manages its own activities and affairs. The University does not direct, supervise or control the organization and is not responsible for the organization’s contracts, acts or omissions.


Additional Content

NSSHLA Chapter Honors Gold - 2019

NSSHLA Chapter Honors Gold - 2017

NSSHLA Chapter Honors Gold - 2016

NSSHLA Chapter Honors Gold - 2015

NSSHLA Chapter Honors Gold - 2014

NSSHLA Chapter Honors Gold - 2013