BSc Speech and Language Therapy / Course details

Year of entry: 2024

Course description

"The students are a really nice group to work with and it's quite a small course, so you get to know each other really well.

"I like learning about how you can help people fix problems with their speech and language. It's nice to help people who feel like they don't have a chance to get back to normality - to show them that there's hope and they can develop language skills again."

Natasha Wetton / BSc Speech and Language Therapy

Our three-year BSc Speech and Language Therapy course will prepare you for a career as a speech and language therapist who treats, supports and cares for those with speech, language, communication, eating, drinking or swallowing disorders.

You will develop the core theoretical knowledge and specialist clinical skills required by the speech and language therapy profession while learning the academic study skills you need to earn a higher education qualification.

Our course places particular emphasis on scientific thinking, preparing you to incorporate clinical enquiry into your chosen career path. You will gain practical, hands-on experience through block placements in each of the three years of study.

In line with the Royal College of Speech and Language Therapists (RCSLT) policy, you will become competent in assessing and managing eating, drinking and swallowing (EDS). To meet these competencies you will be provided with active learning opportunities on campus (including simulation and case-based learning) alongside block placements. You will undertake 30 hours with adults and 10 with children in relation to EDS. These competencies must be met to allow you to practise as a speech and language therapist.

You will be able to register with the Health and Care Professions Council and the Royal College of Speech and Language Therapists after graduation.

Special features

Extensive placement experience

Gain practical experience and team-working skills through three block placements totalling 16 weeks of hands-on work, which we organise for you.

  • Year 1- 4 weeks
  • Year 2 - 6 weeks
  • Year 3 - 6 weeks 

Get involved

Help promote speech and language therapy as a profession through our Speech and Language Therapy Society, which has been highly commended in the University's annual Making A Difference Awards for social responsibility.

Careers help

In your final year, you will study a careers-focused course unit to help you prepare for the world of work.

Teaching and learning

You will learn through:

  • interactive, enquiry-based lectures and supporting tutorials;
  • independent study
  • research projects
  • individual and group projects
  • web-based study
  • clinical practice placements with a service provider, such as the NHS 

You will learn from a number of award-winning leaders in speech and language therapy education. A number of our staff hold fellowships and senior fellowships from the Higher Education Academy.  

You will be assigned an individual academic adviser who regularly offers general academic and personal support. On starting the course all first year students are matched with a Speech and Language Therapy student peer mentor from a higher year group, who offers group and individual suppose and advice on various aspects of student life in Manchester.

You can also take part in Peer-Assisted Study Sessions (PASS) where students provide support and facilitation of learning for specific course units. Learn more about support for our students .

This course is very much full-time and you need to ensure you are available between 9am and 5pm five days a week, although some of this time may be spent off campus in private study or directed reading.

We do, however, understand the needs of those with dependants, and always try to give plenty of warning of changes to timetables and offer more convenient times where possible.


We partner with more than 66 organisations across the north-west of England, with a small number of charities, schools and private companies in addition to large NHS Trusts that provide clinical placements for our students.

We endeavour to provide you with at least one placement with children and young people and one with adults across your time on the course.

You will experience a range of speech, language, communication and swallowing disorders while on placement, which could include:

  • development language disorder (DLD)
  • speech sound disorder (SSD)
  • dysfluency (stammering)
  • dysphonia - voice disorders
  • aphasia - language disorder following a stroke or other trauma
  • dysarthria and dyspraxia
  • word finding difficulties
  • dysphagia - eating, drinking and swallowing difficulties
  • reading and writing disorders

You will also consider the diversity of clients accessing services in the UK. This includes bilingual clients who speak languages other than English, clients from black, Asian and minority ethnic communities, and trans and non-binary clients who have no disorder but wish to change their voice and communication to match their gender presentation.

As a student on this course participating in clinical placements arranged by The University of Manchester as part of your degree, you are covered by the public liability insurance of the placement provider organisation and protected by the indemnity insurance cover of your supervising clinician, who will be a registered member of the HCPC and RCSLT.

Coursework and assessment

We will assess your learning through written exams, written assignments, presentations and vivas.

Course unit details

All three years of the course involve academic and practical work, including a considerable amount of clinical experience, and we work closely with local service providers, including the NHS, to make sure that we prepare you to meet the highest possible workplace standard.

In the first year, study focuses on developing intellectual skills and understanding of typical speech, language and swallowing.

The second and third years include units on clinical linguistics and phonetic and research, but much of your time is spent studying disorders of speech, language, communication and swallowing, as well as approaches to assessment and intervention while also gaining clinical experience.

In particular, you will be required to engage in a number of learning activities to meet the RCSLT (2021) pre-registration eating, drinking and swallowing requirements. You must successfully sign off a minimum of 16 of the 20 competencies and complete 10 hours of direct working with children with EDS issues and 30 hours of working with adults.

Course content for year 1

You will study foundation science subjects as they apply to speech and language therapy (clinical research, biomedical sciences, phonetics, linguistics, psychology and sociology).

You will also undertake professional orientation and preparation towards your first four-week block clinical placement in the north-west region.

Course units for year 1

The course unit details given below are subject to change, and are the latest example of the curriculum available on this course of study.

TitleCodeCredit ratingMandatory/optional
Clinical and Professional Practice 1 PCHN10200 30 Mandatory
Linguistics, Phonetics and Language Development A PCHN10221 20 Mandatory
Linguistics, Phonetics and Language Development B PCHN10222 20 Mandatory
Biomedical Sciences PCHN10320 20 Mandatory
Applied Psychology and Sociology PCHN10332 20 Mandatory
Clinical Research 1 PCHN10531 10 Mandatory

Course content for year 2

Drawing on your clinical experience from Year 1, study focuses on developmental communication and swallowing disorders, as well as those acquired in adulthood.

Study is more clinically focused in clinical linguistics, phonetics and research methods. Professional preparation continues towards your six-week block clinical placement.

Course units for year 2

The course unit details given below are subject to change, and are the latest example of the curriculum available on this course of study.

TitleCodeCredit ratingMandatory/optional
Clinical Linguistics and Phonetics PCHN20100 20 Mandatory
Clinical and Professional Practice 2 PCHN20200 30 Mandatory
Lifelong Disability A PCHN20211 20 Mandatory
Acquired Communication and Swallowing Disabilities A PCHN20310 20 Mandatory
Developmental Speech and Language Disorders A PCHN20321 20 Mandatory
Clinical Research 2 PCHN20532 10 Mandatory

Course content for year 3

Apply more critical thinking to your studies as you move towards professional autonomy in your final year. Study builds upon Year 2, considering those living with lifelong disability, as well as acquired neurological disorders and developing advanced research skills in your particular areas of interest.

There is professional preparation towards your final six-week block clinical placement and, looking beyond this, to preparing you for employment as a speech and language therapist.

Course units for year 3

The course unit details given below are subject to change, and are the latest example of the curriculum available on this course of study.

TitleCodeCredit ratingMandatory/optional
Clinical and Professional Practice 3 PCHN30200 40 Mandatory
Lifelong Disability B PCHN30211 20 Mandatory
Acquired Communication and Swallowing Disabilities B PCHN30310 20 Mandatory
Developmental Speech and Language Disorders B PCHN30321 20 Mandatory
Clinical Research 3 PCHN30531 20 Mandatory

What our students say

Speech and Language Therapy and The University of Manchester
Find out more about what it's like to study at Manchester on the  Biology, Medicine and Health Student Blog .


Our Speech and Language Therapy students can access our own resource room, which is continually updated to incorporate the most commonly used clinical assessment and intervention materials in the field.

We also have access to dedicated technical support, with rooms available for preparation of presentations and video or audiotape analyses.  

University facilities

The University of Manchester offers extensive teaching and learning facilities and  library and online services to help you get the most out of your studies.

Disability support

Practical support and advice for current students and applicants is available from the Disability Advisory and Support Service. Email: .

The Health and Care Professions Council also has some guidance for prospective students for health professions courses .

For applicants with a disability applying between 2023—2025 please note:

RCSLT recognise that some students may have a disability, which will potentially affect their ability to work with aspects of the eating, drinking and swallowing (EDS) process. For example, some may have sensory difficulties with sounds and smells, which affect working with food. To support students and HEIs, RCSLT has agreed that for a time-limited period, those with a disability (where their disability has prevented them from achieving the pre-registration EDS competencies) will still be able to graduate. This will be agreed on a case-by-case basis in discussion with the SLT teaching team and the individual student.

From 2025, new students entering the course with a disability will need to achieve the pre-registration EDS competencies to be able to graduate.

Therefore, you are strongly advised to disclose any disability during the application process, where it may affect your ability to work with clients with EDS issues and/or may prevent you from successfully graduating.