Master of Deaf Education and Hearing Science

The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio
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Master's programs

The Master of Deaf Education and Hearing Science (MDHES) Program, nationally certified by the Council on Education of the Deaf, was created in 2002 in order to provide graduate students in deaf education and medicine the opportunity to build the relationships needed to provide quality services to children with hearing loss. This program is one of only a handful in the country that provides intensive training in how to help children with hearing loss develop spoken language through the use of residual hearing, high-powered hearing aids and modern surgical procedures such as cochlear implants. The San Antonio based program holds courses at an approved off campus location, Sunshine Cottage School for Deaf Children. A Houston-based cohort is accepted biannually with synchronous courses held via teleconference at the Center for Hearing and Speech.

Certified teachers for children with hearing loss are in high demand. Every year positions across the nation go unfilled because of the lack of qualified professionals. In Texas alone, 20-30 teacher vacancies go unfilled annually. If you have an interest in children, language and communication, and a bachelor’s degree already, the MDEHS could be the next step in your career. There are generous tuition scholarships available.

For cohorts beginning in May of 2019 and after, the MDEHS Program will consist of 45 credit hours completed in six semesters (24 months).  MDEHS students will take three courses at the University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA) in Educational Psychology (EP).

Admissions Requirements

Application for admission to the Master of Deaf Education and Hearing Science (MDEHS) Program may be completed online at Completed application, application fee, official transcripts, and supporting documents must be submitted between August 1 and February 1.

All required admissions information and documents must be submitted to the department before an applicant is considered for admission. Because applications and documents are reviewed as they are received, applicants are encouraged to apply early in the application period. Classes begin in the summer semester each year.

Admission Factors

In addition to the academic factors listed below, the following non-academic factors are considered for selecting students for the MDEHS:

  • Hometown or county of residence that has been designated a medically underserved and/or health professions shortage area, especially South Texas
  • Employment history, especially as it occurred simultaneously with undergraduate academic preparation
  • Positions of leadership held
  • Volunteer activities in education-related areas
  • Prior experience in providing educational-related services
  • Extracurricular activities
  • Commitment/desire to serve in an underserved region of the state following graduation
  • Reference letters or recommendations
  • Future goals
  • Knowledge of, and preparation to enter, the profession of deaf education gained through observing or volunteering in a school setting or other setting

Admission Requirements

To be admitted to the MDEHS Program, applicants must have earned a baccalaureate degree from an accredited college or university, with an overall grade point average of 3.0. Incoming students must have completed a baccalaureate degree in education or a related field (e.g., communication science disorders). Depending on the applicant’s background, collateral coursework in Curriculum and Instruction from another college or university may be required. In addition, 50 hours of classroom observation and 25 hours of field experience may be required for non-education majors.  Observation and field experience hours may be waived based upon review of undergraduate transcripts and experience.

Degree Requirements

State Certification

Deaf Education and Hearing Science is a profession requiring certification in teaching hearing-impaired children. State of Texas Certification examinations are administered through the State Board of Educator Certification (SBEC). All students who enter the program already holding teacher certification must pass the Texas Examinations of Educator Standards (TExES) Deaf and Hard of Hearing #(181). Students who enter the program as non-teachers must also become certified as teachers in Texas and must pass the Pedagogy and Professional Responsibilities Exam, EC–12 (TExES). The MDEHS Program is nationally accredited through the Council on Education of the Deaf (CED). It is highly recommended that students apply for certification through CED as well.

Objectives/Program Outcomes

The MDEHS Program is based on, and committed to, teaching future teachers of the deaf the auditory-oral methods of intervention/education for children with hearing loss, as stated in the Auditory-Verbal Position Statement published by the Board of Directors of Auditory-Verbal International.

In addition, the program’s philosophy encompasses the following educational assumptions:

  • Many profoundly deaf children can obtain an excellent education in an auditory-oral or auditory-verbal environment;
  • At some time during the educational years, it is desirable that a child with hearing loss attend school with her/his hearing peers;
  • Applicants with a baccalaureate degree in education or related fields can become effective teachers of the hearing impaired through application of previously gained knowledge and skills plus the acquisition of procedures, techniques, and information unique to the hearing-impaired child. The MDEHS curriculum addresses topics and skills required for Texas teacher certification and national certification.

Each child with a hearing loss is a unique combination of learning styles, degrees of and adjustment to a hearing loss, motivation toward learning, home and community experiences, intellectual abilities, and personal responses to the environment. A dually prepared teacher is in an enviable position of being able to identify these factors and create a learning setting that would permit maximum attainment not only by the child with a hearing loss but also the typically developing children.

Deaf Education Program Grading System


A = Excellent

F = Failure

Grades for courses in which performance is graded an S (Satisfactory) or U (Unsatisfactory) are not used in computing the grade point average. The symbol I (incomplete) may be recorded for a student who has not completed course assignments at the conclusion of the course.

In some programs, students have the option of seeking exemption from certain courses in the curriculum if they have successfully completed an equivalent course in the curriculum at another college or university or content in an examination. The symbol CR (Credit) is recorded for a course(s) for which the student has been exempted.

Grades in Clinical Rotations, Practicums, and Fieldwork Courses

Clinical Rotations, Practicums, and Fieldwork Courses may be graded S (Satisfactory) or U (Unsatisfactory), or may be assigned a letter grade, depending on the departmental policy.

A grade of S or other designation of an acceptable grade is assigned if the student successfully satisfies the criteria for clinical courses. Failure to successfully satisfy the course criteria may result in an I (Incomplete) or a U (Unsatisfactory) or a letter grade considered unsatisfactory based on departmental policy.

Criteria and time frame for removal of an I or U or other unsatisfactory grade in clinical courses are determined based on clinical documentation and consultation with the clinical supervisor/clinical instructor, not to exceed one full calendar year. An I or Uor other unsatisfactory grade may require that the student complete an additional clinical affiliation or other remediation that could extend the professional curriculum beyond the expected graduation date. More than one unsatisfactory grade is not allowed within the total clinical course sequence.

DEHS 5001. Foundations of Ed for the Deaf. 2.5 Credit Hours.

History of the education of the hearing impaired including Deaf Culture and American Sign Language (ASL). Impact of hearing loss on academic access, vocational choice, and personal development. Current trends in academic programming, parent-infant through college, and provisions for multicultural populations.

DEHS 5003. Speech Mech-Anatomy/Physiology/Acoustics. 2.5 Credit Hours.

This course is a study of the component parts of the speech mechanisms and their coordination to permit functional speech, physiology and acoustics of speech, impact of hearing loss on development and maintenance of functional speech skills, and individual assessment procedures. Practicum included.

DEHS 5005. Factors In Child Language Acquisition. 2.5 Credit Hours.

Course content includes the normal progression of language, cognition and social development, and how hearing loss impacts on development; an overview of acquisition of language by children who may have more than one handicapping condition; the nature of bilingual and ESL language learning in relation to hearing loss, including the impact of visual language learning through speech reading and signing systems; and the nature of language development as related to learning theories, communicative functions, and culture. Practicum included.

DEHS 5007. Introduction to Audiology. 3 Credit Hours.

Nature of sound, anatomy, and physiology of hearing; types of testing for hearing loss; analysis of audiograms; fitting of ear molds; operation and design of hearing aids; use and maintenance of FM units; and Cochlear implants and assistive technology. Practicum included.

DEHS 5011. Language Development. 3 Credit Hours.

Course content includes the assessment of present language and listening levels in hearing impaired children and methods of aural habilitation and language instruction/therapy. Practicum included.

DEHS 5021. Teaching/Management Apprenticeship 1. 4 Credit Hours.

Students spend time in the education and management/coordination of services for the hearing impaired. Students spend time teaching both hearing and hearing-impaired students and in managing and coordinating social, education, and health services for the hearing impaired. Course fees: Practicum $10.

DEHS 6002. Comp Assessment, Counseling, Management. 1.5 Credit Hour.

The impact of a hearing loss upon the child, the family, and the community; reactions and adjustments identified and evaluated; delivery of services from birth through adulthood; and newborn screening are included. Crisis periods are identified and coping mechanisms evaluated. Also included are the role of classroom teacher and health professional in providing support to the family, and a multi-professional team approach to long-term management for the hearing impaired.

DEHS 6004. Curriculum Mod-Child W/Hear Loss. 2.5 Credit Hours.

Course content includes the development and adaptation of curricular materials and instructional procedures for the child with hearing impairment; selection and writing of objectives for speech, language, and listening within the content of early childhood education best practices; impact of current research in the effective teaching of reading and the language arts for children with hearing loss, including the identification of techniques and materials useful in meeting the individual needs of each student. Students will have the opportunity to learn adaptive strategies to address the needs of students with multiple handicaps. Practicum included.

DEHS 6006. Best Practices in Early Intervention. 2.5 Credit Hours.

Provision of services to infants, toddlers and preschoolers and their families through public and private agencies. Use of the Auditory-Verbal Therapy approach emphasizing the development of optimum listening skills in children with hearing impairment and the recognition of caregivers as the primary models of spoken language. Includes parent guidance, counseling, education and support. Practicum is included.

DEHS 6008. Speech for Hearing Impaired Student. 2.5 Credit Hours.

This course addresses: specific development and remedial techniques for articulation therapy; assessment of phonetic and phonologic level skills; strategies for elicitation, development; transfer and maintenance of all English phonemes and suprasegmentals; and choosing techniques appropriate to auditory/visual/tactile modalities available to the child with hearing loss. Practicum included.

DEHS 6009. Aural (Re) Habilitation. 2.5 Credit Hours.

This course is designed to study methods of pediatrics aural rehabilitation available for children with hearing loss and the impact of new technologies on therapy and teaching.

DEHS 6022. Teaching/Management Apprenticeship 2. 4 Credit Hours.

Continuation of Teaching/Management Apprenticeship I. Students will be required to develop a comprehensive portfolio of their experiences and abilities. Outcomes of their knowledge and skills gained in the program are emphasized. Course fees: Practicum $10.

DEHS 6099. Comprehensive Examination. 0 Credit Hours.

The comprehensive examination is required prior to graduation. The examination, which incorporates all critical elements of the curriculum, tests for mastery of knowledge as well as professional skills.

INTD 5064. Applied Statistics for Health Care Practitioners. 3 Credit Hours.

This online course focuses on the application of descriptive and inferential statistics in research studies. Students are expected to gain knowledge and skills that will enable them to understand, interpret, and evaluate statistical results; work with a consultant statistician; and use software to enter, analyze, and summarize data. Course requirements include homework assignments, online discussions and/or chats, and periodic projects.

More Information

Posted on:

Application Deadline:



Master's programs


San Antonio , United States