Students Preparing for Academic-Research Careers (SPARC) Award


The Students Preparing for Academic-Research Careers (SPARC) Award aims to cultivate student interest in pursuing

  • a research doctorate (PhD) in communication sciences and disorders (CSD) and
  • a career as a faculty-researcher in CSD

Up to two awards will be dedicated to students attending master’s and baccalaureate universities.

Program Benefits and Offerings

The SPARC Award provides unique opportunities by offering the following:

  1. Financial resources ($1,000) to pursue individualized mentored teaching and research activities.
  2. Structured networking opportunities at the ASHA Convention (e.g., meeting fellow SPARC awardees, attending a reception with participants of ASHA's other research education programs).
  3. Formal recognition on the ASHA website.

View current and former SPARC Award recipients.

Eligibility Requirements

Because the SPARC Award is intended to foster student interest in pursuing a PhD, only those students who have been enrolled in or accepted into the following degree program types are eligible:

  • Undergraduate CSD programs (current juniors and seniors only)
  • CAA-accredited master’s degree programs in speech-language pathology (accepted students or current 1st year students only)
  • CAA-accredited entry-level clinical doctor of audiology (e.g., AuD) programs (accepted students or current 1st or 2nd year students only)

You are not eligible for the SPARC award if you meet the following exclusionary criteria:

  • Students who have been admitted to, are enrolled in, or have graduated from a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) program, including dual-degree programs (e.g., AuD/PhD combined program
  • Students admitted to or enrolled in a clinical doctoral degree program in speech-language pathology (e.g., SLPD, CScD) 

Participant Requirements

Awardees must be

  • enrolled in the respective CSD program, full time or part time, for the 2018–2019 academic year and
  • national NSSLHA members (at time of disbursement of funds).

How to Apply

Applicants must do the following:

  • complete an online application;
  • upload required PDF documents;
  • submit the entire application package by the deadline. 

Questions? Please refer to the SPARC FAQs.

Still have questions? Please contact Academic Affairs and Research Education at

How to Serve as a Reviewer

If interested in serving as a reviewer, contact

Reviewers must

  • hold a research doctoral degree (e.g., PhD) in CSD or a related discipline and
  • have a faculty appointment.

Additional requirements may apply. 

ASHA Corporate Partners