Postgraduate Taught

PgDip/ MSc Speech and Language Therapy (Pre-Registration)

If you want to become a speech and language therapist and have a relevant degree (eg in linguistics or psychology), this course could open up a fascinating new career path for you. It is the only postgraduate pre-registration course in speech and language therapy offered in Scotland.

As a speech and language therapist you will give life-changing treatment and support and care for children and adults who have difficulties speaking and communicating. It can be a very varied and deeply rewarding career. This course will enable you to register with the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) and the Royal College of Speech and Language Therapists (RCSLT) and to practise as a speech and language therapist in the UK.

You will find case studies on students and graduates of this course at the foot of this page.

Why QMU?

  • The course is the only postgraduate pre-registration course of its kind in Scotland.
  • You will be taught by an expert team of clinical practitioners, linguists and researchers. We have specialists in all key clinical areas.
  • Through our Clinical Audiology, Speech and Language Research Centre, QMU has done pioneering work in the area of speech sciences. In the 2014 REF exercise (a UK-wide evaluation of research quality and impact) our 92% of our research in speech and language was classed as world-leading or internationally excellent (92%).


Course overview

As a speech and language therapist, you will assess, diagnose and treat children and adults with a wide range of speech, language, communication and swallowing difficulties.

On this course you will undertake both theoretical and practical learning through a range of taught academic modules and supervised clinical placements.

Exit awards

PgDip (315 credits)/ MSc (315 credits plus a Research Dissertation)


To obtain a specific postgraduate award at QMU you must complete a number of credit bearing modules. You can opt to study for the PgDip or the full MSc, either of which will qualify you to work as a speech and language therapist in the UK.

Teaching, learning and assessment

Teaching will include a mix of lectures, tutorials, student-led seminars, clinical placement experience, case study analysis and individual project work. Emphasis will be placed on integrating clinical and university-based learning opportunities and on independent study. Your performance will be assessed by a combination of assignments, examinations and practical assessments.

Teaching hours and attendance

Each module which you study on campus will require you to attend classes and carry out independent work. Your attendance at placement is compulsory and your attendance at QMU-based modules is expected.

Classes will be spread over the whole week, except for placement days when you will be off campus. This is a full-time course, with the expectation that classes, independent study and placement together require 35 - 40 hours of dedicated time each week.

Class Sizes

We expect 25-35 students on the course each year.

Links with industry/ professional bodies

The course is accredited by the Health and Care Professions Council and adheres to the Royal College of Speech and Language Therapists curriculum guidelines.


  • Foundations for Speech and Language Therapy
  • Pre-Clinical Placements
  • Linguistics 1: Introduction to Linguistics
  • Neurology for SLT and Audiology
  • Adult Acquired Language and Cognitive Communication Disorders
  • Linguistics 2: Clinical Linguistic Analysis
  • Disorders of Speech and Fluency
  • Manual Handling
  • Dysphagia (Developmental and Acquired)
  • Within-Semester Clinical Placement 1
  • Professional Practice for SLT 1
  • Biological and Behavioural Science for SLT: Typical Processes
  • Developmental Disorders of Language and Communication
  • Intellectual Disability, Physical and Sensory Impairment
  • Linguistics 3: Linguistic Processing and Variation
  • Within-Semester Clinical Placement 2
  • Motor Speech Disorder, Voice Disorder, Cleft Lip and Palate
  • Within-Semester Clinical Placement 3
  • Professional Practice 2
  • Research Methods

If studying for the MSc, you will also complete a dissertation (60 credits).

The modules listed here are correct at time of posting March 2019) but are subject to change. In the event that modules do need to change, QMU will seek to use reasonable endeavours to ensure that there is no detrimental impact to the students. Please check the website for any updates.


  • Pre-clinical placements in nursery, primary and adult social care settings (12 days)
  • Placement 1 – Year One, Semester Two (10 days)
  • Placement 2 – Year One, Summer (17 days)
  • Placement 3 - Year Two, Semester 1 (10 days)
  • Placement 4 - Year Two, Semester 2 (10 days)
  • Placement 5 - Year Two, Summer (17 days)

All placements are organised by the clinical placement team. Semester placements take place across our local catchment area of Lothian, Borders, Fife, Forth Valley and Dundee. Summer placements mainly take place throughout Scotland, although it is sometimes possible for students to have a placement elsewhere in the UK or overseas.

Students are responsible for any travel or accommodation costs incurred during placements. Although every effort is made to arrange summer block placements to suit students’ circumstances, this is not always possible and students must be prepared to be flexible about placement location and timing.


Most graduates work within the NHS in community clinics, schools and hospitals. Some graduates have gained research posts and some have gone on to achieve higher degrees.

International applicants should be aware that full registration with the RCSLT entails completion of a probationary period of clinical practise in the UK after the successful completion of the degree. It may be necessary to confirm with the professional body in your home country that this qualification is recognised and that full registration in the UK will entitle you to practise in your home county.

Entry requirements

Upper second class degree/masters level degree in relevant subject (biology, psychology or linguistics) is required. Experience of working with people with speech or communication impairments, for example through professional or voluntary work or shadowing a speech and language therapist, is desirable.

International: Where your honours degree has not been studied in English, you will be required to provide evidence of English language competence at no less than IELTS 8.0 with no individual element below 7.5.

Criminal Records Check: A satisfactory criminal records check will be required.


Application deadline

31 March 2019

NB The initial deadline for applications has now passed but we may be able to consider late applications if places become available. This will not impact on offers being made to applicants who applied before the original closing date. We recommend that you apply before the end of May to be considered.

More information and contacts

Admissions or Siobhan Mack on tel: +44(0)131 474 0000.

Please Note:

The delivery of this course is subject to the terms and conditions set out in our 2019/20 Entry - Terms and Conditions (Postgraduate).

Course Overview

At QMU and on practice placement
Full-time: 2 years (to attain PgDip) with an additional 12 months (part-time) or 6 months (full-time) to attain the MSc
Start Date
August 2019
Study Abroad
School of Health Sciences
Fees & Funding

Related Professional Bodies

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A student Story (see bottom pf page for more)

Monia Molina - MSc Speech and Language Therapy (Pre-Reg) "My lecturers did a great job in making sure we were all perfectly conscious of the policies and rules that regulate our profession and to which we must respond. They taught us how fundamental is evidence-based practice for speech and language therapy and how to keep ourselves up to date independently." Read my story

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