Is the DSE speech and language online course a professional development activity for the purposes of maintaining ASHA Certificates of Clinical Competence?

DSE's online speech and language course is designed for speech and language pathologists and offers a comprehensive research review and in-depth guidance on evidence-based speech and language therapy for individuals with Down syndrome. Our understanding is that this course falls within ASHA's definition of professional development and is consistent with ASHA's examples of generally accepted activities.

DSE's online course entitled "Improving speech and language development for children and young people with Down syndrome" is designed for speech and language pathologists and offers a comprehensive research review and in-depth guidance on evidence-based speech and language therapy for individuals with Down syndrome.

The course is comprised of 10 modules, each including a detailed presentation (each between 1h 20m and 2h 50m in length), a checklist to help evaluate the implications for effective practice, a further reading and references list, and an assessment to confirm understanding of some of the key content.

The course was developed and is led by Professor Sue Buckley OBE - a recognized leader in education research for children with Down syndrome - and is rigorously grounded in the scientific understanding of the learning needs of children with Down syndrome.

A photograph of a speech pathologist working with children with Down syndrome

The American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA) provides guidance on its requirements for maintaining certification on its web site, including a definition of professional development and acceptable activities.

Our understanding is that this course falls within ASHA's definition of professional development and is consistent with ASHA's examples of generally accepted activities. However, we note that ASHA states that "the certificate holder is responsible for determining that the professional development activity is appropriate, relevant, and meaningful to any practice setting and area of practice."

Documentation

Participants who successfully complete our online courses receive a certificate of completion and may retain handouts (which include copies of all presentation slides), checklists and reading and reference lists. Our understanding is that this meets ASHA's record-keeping requirements.

Certification Maintenance Hours (CMHs)

A participant who completes every module in the course, including working through each checklist and selected supplementary reading, can expect to spend a minimum of 30 hours studying the content and considering the implications for effective practice. We would estimate that participants taking the supplementary reading further can expect to spend more than 40 hours studying the course.


Last reviewed: January 11, 2018