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Master of Speech Language Therapy Practice (MSLTPrac)

Considering studying a Master of Speech Language Therapy Practice? Read more about it here.

The Master of Speech Language Therapy Practice (MSLTPrac) provides students with a clinical qualification in SLT. In addition to the academic programme, students spend time working in health, education and special school settings, and gain clinical experience at The University of Auckland Clinics at the Tāmaki Innovation Campus.

To apply for enrolment in this degree a candidate should possess a Bachelor's degree in a related subject such as Psychology, Education, Health Sciences or Linguistics with a B- average or higher in at least 75 points at Stage 3 or 700 level. In addition they must demonstrate that they have the personal qualities necessary to undertake a clinical degree of this kind.

In order to meet New Zealand Speech Language Therapy Association (NZSTA) programme accreditation standards the course must be a minimum of 80 weeks in duration over a two year period. This requires that the academic year be extended to a minimum of 40 weeks for each year. The MSLTPrac programme begins in mid-February and finishes in late December.

Please note: 

  • Applications for this programme for 2020 are currently closed.
  • They will open on 1 July 2019 and close on 1 October 2019.
  • In 2020, Speech Science programme and the SPCHSCI courses will be taught at the Grafton Campus.


Work opportunities

There are excellent work opportunities for qualified Speech Language Therapists both within New Zealand and internationally. Speech Language Therapists are involved in the assessment and treatment of a wide range of communication and swallowing disorders across the lifespan and work in a range of settings, including hospitals, schools, community rehabilitation facilities, special schools and in early intervention teams.

The best way of explaining what Speech Language Therapists do is probably to have a look at some of the many and varied cases and employment places that Speech Language Therapists are involved with. 

Read more about 2018 graduate Roimata Manaia Haynes (Ngāti Awa, Ngāti Maniapoto).

Qualification structure

Year 1

  • SPCHSCI 711: Introduction to Communication in Children and Adults
  • SPCHSCI 712: Linguistics for Speech Language Therapy
  • SPCHSCI 713: Anatomy and Physiology of the Speech and Hearing Systems
  • SPCHSCI 714: Speech Language Therapy Clinical Practicum I
  • SPCHSCI 721: Dysphagia (e-learning)
  • SPCHSCI 722: Communication Disorders in Children
  • SPCHSCI 723: Acquired Neurogenic Communication Disorders
  • SPCHSCI 724: Speech Language Therapy Clinical Practicum II

Year 2

  • SPCHSCI 733: Audiology for Speech Language Therapy
  • SPCHSCI 734: Speech Language Therapy Clinical Practicum III
  • SPCHSCI 736 Topics in Communication Disorders in Adults
  • SPCHSCI 743: Advanced Study of Speech and Language Therapy in Children
  • SPCHSCI 744: Speech Language Therapy Clinical Practicum IV
  • SPCHSCI 746: Voice and Fluency
  • SPCHSCI 790 A/B: Speech Language Therapy Dissertation
2019 MSLTPrac flyer
View and download. (205.0 kB, PDF)

Frequently asked questions

Q. What do applicants need to have studied as an undergraduate in order to be considered as an applicant?

A. Applicants need an undergraduate degree with majors in either Psychology, Education, Health Science or Linguistics, and have passed at least 75 points at Stage 3 or 700-level with a B-average grade or higher. Study in Human Biology and Acoustics would also be helpful. The University Calendar provides more details.

Q. What subjects are studied for the degree and is there a research component?

A. Linguistics, anatomy, physiology, education, psychology, audiology, human communication disorders and swallowing disorders. There is a research component in the second year.

Q. Can this course be taken by distance learning?

A. No. The course requires on the spot supervision during its clinical component and therefore needs to be taken on the campus.

Q. Can this course be taken part time?

A. No. The two years are carefully programmed so that the papers build on the learning from previous papers. Clinical work is a continuing part of the course and interruptions in the learning and demonstration of clinical skills by the student would make a pass in this area of the course very difficult.

Q. What are the career options once the student has graduated from this course?

A. The graduate can apply for Speech Language Therapy positions advertised in either Health or Education throughout New Zealand and Overseas. It is not recommended that graduates practise independently until they have at least 3 years of general practice. Speech Language therapists are needed in Health and Education positions throughout New Zealand and graduates are able to find a position quite readily after graduation.

Q. What is the length of the academic year?

A. It begins two weeks prior to University Orientation Week and continues until late December. This extra time is necessary to accommodate the number of clinical/academic hours required for accreditation.

Q. What hidden financial costs may there be in this course?

A. An appropriate standard of dress is required when the student is involved in clinical work with clients. Travel costs stemming from travel to clinical placements are met by the student, as are immunisation costs for immunisations required by the placement. There may be childcare costs, as the course requires full day attendance during placement times, which may extend into school holiday periods.

Q. Can students decide where they would like to be placed in order to get clinical

A. Students liaise closely with the Clinical Director to ensure that their placement is appropriate both geographically and in its ability to provide the experience that the student requires. Students require experience in both adult and paediatric work and with a range of speech and language disorders.

Q. How many get in to this course… is it competitive?

A. Eighteen students are selected each year. A shortlist is compiled from the applications and these short listed applicants are interviewed. After interviewing has been completed the eighteen students are selected. It is competitive to win a place.

Q. Are students who have English as their second language able to apply?

A. Yes. As Speech Language Therapists service a multicultural community, it is important that Speech Language Therapists are representative of that community. However, it is also important that applicants’ spoken and written English is clearly understandable and that they are able to read and understand textbooks in English.

Q. What facilities are available at the Tamaki Campus where the Master of Speech and Language Therapy is taken?

A. Parking, Café, Library, Student Resource Centre, lecture theatres, close proximity to related disciplines.

Q. How could applicants best prepare for applying to this course?


  • Ensure that their undergraduate degree matches the specifications as set down in the University Calendar.
  • Make an appointment with a Speech Language Therapist and discuss what is involved in their work.
  • Search on the internet for disabilities that cause speech and language impairment.
  • Study human head and neck anatomy and physiology, linguistics and acoustics if these areas have not been part of the undergraduate experience.

Dr Clare McCann talks to prospective Speech Science students

Dr Clare McCann, School of Psychology
Dr Clare McCann

For those who were unable to attend the 2018 Courses and Careers Open Day, we would like to give our prospective postgraduate students and their families an opportunity to learn about Speech Science and the available career opportunities. 

View Dr Clare McCann's presentation about our Speech Science programme (below).

2018 Courses and Careers Open Day Speech Science lecture with slides, by Dr Clare McCann.

Further information

Find the application forms for the Master of Speech Language Therapy Practice on Application forms.

Further details on this programme are available by contacting:

Head of Speech Science
Dr Clare McCann
Phone: +64 9 923 5221

Academic Services Coordinator
Kharmin Sukhia
Phone: +64 9 923 6887

Graduates of universities overseas and/or those without New Zealand citizenship or permanent resident status should also correspond with the International Office.