Strategic plan 2016-2022

Approved by the CSD Department faculty on March 01, 2022

Department Mission

The mission of the Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders (CSD) at WSU is to provide leadership in and focus on the discipline of human communication sciences and disorders through excellent teaching, rigorous research programs, and service to the university, the community and the nation.

Department Vision

We aspire, as a growing department in an urban research university, to increase national recognition as a leading program committed to preparing excellent clinicians, researchers, and leaders within the fields of speech-language and hearing sciences, speech-language pathology and audiology. 

Alignment with the University Strategic Plan

Our defining values as a department reflect the strategic plan of Wayne State University: Collaboration, Innovation, Integrity, Diversity and Inclusion, and Excellence. The 2016- 2021 University Strategic Plan includes seven strategic focus areas:

  • Student success
  • Teaching excellence
  • Research
  • Diversity and inclusion
  • Entrepreneurship
  • Financial sustainability and operational excellence
  • Community engagement

The CSD strategic plan specifies the actions, metrics, and resources to implement the University's strategic goals and objectives within the department. This plan will serve as an active roadmap for the whole CSD department, including research and clinical programs at the undergraduate and graduate levels.

Compare-To and Aspire-To Programs

Our department progress in scholarship will be measured against the CSD programs that were identified as peer and stretch programs in the WSU Program Review of our undergraduate and PhD programs in 2012. That is, for benchmarking against peer programs we will use St. Louis University (Undergraduate program), Bowling Green State University and Howard University (PhD program), and for benchmarking against an "Aspire-to" CSD program we will use The University of South Florida in Tampa. Our two clinical degree programs (the M.A. in Speech-Language Pathology and the Doctor of Audiology) were not included in that WSU Program Review because they are subject to ongoing evaluation by the Council on Academic Accreditation (CAA) in Audiology (AUD) and Speech-Language Pathology (SLP). Both of our clinical degree programs are fully accredited by the CAA.


The CSD faculty will regularly evaluate and adjust the strategic plan so that it is an active roadmap for ongoing planning and action toward common goals. At each monthly faculty meeting, the short-term goals will be posted in the meeting agenda and the faculty will discuss progress toward the goals. Each October at our faculty retreat we will have a progress report and re-evaluation of our goals and action plan.

Short-term goals

Short Term Goal #1. Increase CSD Faculty-Staff-Student Engagement.

Connection to University Strategic Plan: This CSD goal is closely aligned with the following WSU strategic focus areas: Student Success, Teaching Excellence, Diversity and Inclusion, and Community Engagement.

  • S1.1 – Specify CSD values and opportunities for engagement
  • S1.2 – Match faculty to areas of strength and promote participation
  • S1.3 – Promote engagement of students across graduate and undergraduate programs
  • S1.4 – Build alumni relations

Short Term Goal #2. Increase Funding for the CSD Department.

Connection to University Strategic Plan: This CSD goal is closely aligned with the following WSU strategic focus areas: Student Success, Research, Entrepreneurship, and Financial Sustainability and Operational Excellence.

  • S2.1 – Obtain a department secretary, thus supporting research and fundraising by alleviating secretarial workload on faculty
  • S2.2 – Implement a CSD Research Strategic Plan
  • S2.3 – Improve fundraising for scholarships and clinical programs

Long-term goals

Long Term Goal #1. Increase Enrollment of New Students to the University

  • L1.1 – Complete development of at least one new online or hybrid CSD course that is distinct to Wayne State as an urban research university, and offer it to WSU non-majors and qualified high school seniors
  • L1.2 – Gain approval of the new course as meeting General Education requirement
  • L1.3 – Increase outreach between the department and local high school and community college populations
  • L1.4 – Increase CSD recruitment out-of-state
  • L1.5 – Involve alumni and CSD graduates of targeted schools in efforts to recruit new and transfer students
  • L1.6 – Participate in CLAS recruiting events and offer tours of CSD department
  • L1.7 – Make increased use of social media outreach
  • L1.8 – Increase opportunities for undergraduate students to participate in CSD research

Metric 1: We will increase WSU enrollment by adding new high school and undergraduate non-major students to new CSD course(s).

Long Term Goal #2: Maintain and Improve Recruitment to CSD Graduate Programs

This goal addresses increasing competition from other CSD programs in the region.

  • L2.1 – Increase visibility of WSU graduate programs regionally and nationally
  • L2.2 – Provide strong support for student applicants during the admissions process
  • L2.3 – Continue to strengthen cutting-edge clinical training programs
  • L2.4 – Increase funding for student scholarships

Metric 1: We will maintain full enrollment in the M.A. and Au.D. programs, and will increase enrollment in the Ph.D. program as faculty size allows.

Metric 2: In the face of increasing competition for graduate students, we will nonetheless raise the selection criteria for students enrolled in our graduate programs.

Long Term Goal #3: Increase Number of CSD Faculty Members

  • L3.1 – Fill tenure-track faculty position in SLP to decrease part-time faculty, increase CSD research productivity, and increase recruitment of new Ph.D. students
  • L3.2 – Fill tenure-track faculty position in AUD to decrease part-time faculty, increase CSD research productivity, and increase recruitment of new Ph.D. students

Metric 1: We will increase our faculty size by filling the two tenure-track lines.

Long Term Goal #4: Maintain and Improve High Quality of Graduate Programs

  • L4.1 – Strengthen the on-site clinical training programs and facilities in the WSU Speech and Language Center and the WSU Audiology Clinic
  • L4.2 – Maximize off-site clinical training opportunities and further enhance relationships with off-site clinical supervisors
  • L4.3 – Provide continuing education opportunities for internal and external clinical supervisors
  • L4.4 – Continue to develop the multicultural/bilingual emphasis in speech-language pathology and extend to the doctor of audiology program
  • L4.5 – Build the multi-professional and inter-professional aspects of our graduate clinical training programs
  • L4.6 – Increase participation of Ph.D. students in department research events and programs
  • L4.7 – Increase opportunities for CSD students to participate in collaborative research
  • L4.8 – Complete ongoing assessment of curricula and modify if needed to promote the highest quality undergraduate and graduate programs.
  • L4.9 – Increase faculty participation and leadership in professional organizations

Metric 1: We will document high levels of student performance and satisfaction in our clinical training programs, both in our two in-house clinics (Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology) and in our off-site clinical placements.

Metric 2: We will promote and measure faculty and student learning in multicultural and linguistic diversity in communication sciences and disorders

Metric 3: We will increase the frequency of research events and programs that bring Ph.D. students and other CSD students together to discuss and participate in collaborative research.

Long-Term Goal #5: Increase Faculty Research Productivity

  • L5.1 – Implement a CSD research strategic plan
  • L5.2 – Review and update the CSD Research Strategic Plan annually

Metric 1: We will increase the number of CSD faculty publications annually, especially in refereed journals

Metric 2: We will increase the number of CSD faculty external grant submissions annually

Metric 3: We will increase the amount of extramural funding per tenure-track or tenured CSD faculty member

Long-Term Goal #6: Nurture an environment that embraces and enhances faculty and student diversity and inclusivity.

  • L6.1 – Identify successful practices at other institutions for recruiting a higher number of qualified underrepresented students to our CSD programs
  • L6.2 – Enhance study of cultural and linguistic diversity in CSD programs
  • L6.3 – Continue to follow hiring guidelines of the WSU Office of Equal Opportunity

Metric 1: We will re-activate our CSD Minority Recruitment Committee to make annual recommendations to the Chair and faculty concerning these issues.

Metric 2: We will promote and measure faculty and student learning in multicultural and linguistic diversity.

Long-Term Goal #7: Increase Fundraising to Support CSD Initiatives.

  • L7.1 – Identify and prioritize CSD causes to market to potential donors
  • L7.2 – Work with the Development Office and the college to speak with as many prospective CSD donors as possible
  • L7.3 – Achieve donations sufficient to fund endowments (e.g., Gaeth fund)

Metric 1: We will establish and implement a comprehensive marketing plan in coordination with the development office and CLAS.