Independent Study

Stephanie Noeller standing next to a poster presentation
Stephanie Noeller ’18

At Wooster, Independent Study (I.S.) provides all students the opportunity to engage in an activity both personally meaningul and appropriate to their individual fields and interests. Students work closely with their faculty advisors through regularly scheduled conferences and seminars that are designed to assist, encourage, and challenge the participants and to afford both students and advisors an opportunity to share the excitement of discovery and expression in areas of mutual interest.

CSD I.S. Guide

Junior I.S.

In the Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders, many students have revised their Junior I.S. theses and submitted them for consideration to professional conferences. Indeed, over 20 students since 1996 have had their Junior I.S. thesis or course paper accepted in competitive reviews. Students have delivered the results of their research at the DePauw University Undergraduate Honors Conference, the National Conference of Undergraduate Research, and the Ohio Speech and Hearing Association. At these conferences, students have received helpful feedback from well-known scholars and had the opportunity to share research insights with others. Both graduate schools and prospective employers view the competitive review and presentation of original research as a positive sign of an individual's intellect, research and analysis skills, and initiative. Perhaps equally compelling reasons for students to submit their I.S. theses to conferences, though, are getting to know new people and bonding with peers from Wooster in a different setting. In a word, conferences are fun.

Senior I.S.

In the senior year, each student, under the guidance of his or her advisor, spends two semesters working on a major investigative project that culminates in the writing of a thesis. Recent majors have studied:

  • An Investigation of the Potential Relationship Between Hearing Loss and Alzheimer's Disease
  • An Analysis of the Diagnostic Assessment Procedures AudiologistsUse When Determining Candidacy for Cochlear Implants in Children With Multiple Disabilities
  • Professional Perceptions of Auditory Rehabilitation Specialists Regarding Which Components of Music Training Programs Designed for Adult Chochlear Implant Recipients are Most Effective In Improving Music Enjoyment
  • Professionals' Perception Regarding the Knowledge, Components, and Materials for Audiologic Rehabilitation With Adult Cochlear Implant Recipients
  • Bilateral Sequential Cochlear Implant Thereapy Practices: Parents and Therapists Perspective
  • Parents' Perception of Their Children's Health-Related Quality of Life: A Study of Pediatric Cochlear Implants and Listening and Spoken Language Thereapy
  • Music Therapy Be the Next Breakthrough in Therapy for Pediatric Cochlear Implant Recipients? Analysis of the Integration of Music Therapy into Cochlear Implant Teams
  • Policies and Clinical Practices Regarding Candidacy & Auditory Treatment for Hispanic Pediatric Patients in Cochlear Implant Centers in the United States
  • The Investigation of Concurrent Validity of the Baby SPEAK Measure and Parental Knowledge of Early Language Development
  • Two Ears Are Better Than One: An Examination of the Decision-Making Process of Chochlear Implant Audiologists When Deciding on Bilateral Sequential or Bilateral Simultaneous Chochlear Implants or Their Pediatric Patients
  • Factors That Infleunce Device Selection by Parents of Pediatric Chochlear Implant Candidates
  • Inclusive Transition: A Study Evaluating the Perceived Level of Prepardness and Procedures Involved In Children's Transition From An OPTION School To A Mainstream Classroom
  • Is This Thing ON? An Investigation of School-Based Speech-Language Pathologists's Knowledge of Hearing Technology
  • To All Who Come to This Happy Place: An Exploration of Hearing Assistive Technology & Accommodations at U.S. Theme Parks
  • Horses Are Worth More Than Riches: Parental Perceptions of the Relationship Between Equine Assisted Activities/Thearapy & Listening and Spoken Language
  • The Status of Audiologic Rehabilitation for Adult Patients with Cochlear Implants
    Verbal Communication in Traditional and Open Structured Classrooms: The Ways in Which Discipline, Support, and Instruction Differ
  • A Social Skills Group for Adolescents with Asperger’s Syndrome
  • The Effectiveness of Tympanoplasty Surgeries Using Alloderm TM
  • A Study of Speech-Language Pathologists’ and Audiologists’ Views on Formal Counseling Coursework in Master’s Degree Programs

On graduation weekend, the Department holds a Senior Open House where faculty, students, their families, and other members of the College community celebrate the new graduates' research achievements.