Speech-Language Pathology Program Admissions


All applicants (domestic and international) must apply through the Ontario Rehabilitation Science Programs (ORPAS). Incomplete files will not be reviewed.

The admissions process and requirements undergoes annual review and is subject to change. The School of Rehabilitation Science reserves the right to change the admission process and requirements at any time without notice. Every effort will be made to inform prospective applicants of any changes in a timely manner.  It is expected that there will be changes to the prerequisites and the minimum TOEFL scores for 2019.

We will be available for questions at the FHS Open House
Date: October 25th, 2018
Time: 11:00 am to 2:00 pm
Location: MUSC Marketplace, McMaster University

The ORPAS application site for 2019 opens October 18th

***Please note that all admission requirements must be met. Applications that do not meet ALL of the requirements will not be reviewed. The requirements are the same for all applicants, including mature, and international applicants. The number of seats in the Speech-Language Pathology program is limited, therefore, possession of published minimum requirements does not guarantee admission.***

Target Enrollment = 32 students

General Admission Requirements

Applicants must achieve a four-year baccalaureate degree (120 units/credits) in any discipline, and will require a minimum sub-GPA of 3.3/4.0.  Applicants may apply in the 4th year of their degree.
* Click here for full details about how a sub-GPA is calculated.

Letters of reference and letters of intent are NOT required for McMaster and will not be viewed if submitted.  This section in ORPAS should be left blank.

Prerequisite Courses

Biological Science

Biological Science

One biological-science course (full or half) at any level with a grade of B or higher is required.  Examples of acceptable courses include:

  • Human Anatomy and/or Physiology
  • Anatomy and/or Physiology of Speech and Hearing
  • Neurosciences
  • Neuroanatomy
  • Introductory Biology



One linguistics course (full or half), in the area of fundamental information pertaining to the use of speech and language processes, at any level with a grade of B or higher is required.  Examples of acceptable courses include:

  • Introductory Linguistics
  • Normal Acquisition of Speech and Language
  • Phonetics/Phonology/Syntax/Morphology



One psychology course (full or half), pertinent to communication disorders, at a second-year level or higher with a grade of B or higher is required.  Examples of acceptable courses include:

  • Developmental psychology
  • Aging and perception
  • Theories of learning and behaviour that have application to communication disorders (e.g. verbal learning, behaviour modification, neuropsychology)
  • Study of personality development, abnormal behaviour (e.g. Abnormal psychology, Child Development)
  • Study of the development and education of special populations

Statistics or Research Methods

Statistics or Research Methods

One research methods or statistics course (full or half), in the area of basic principles and methods involved in conducting research in human behaviour, at any level with a grade of B or higher is required.  Examples of acceptable courses include:

  • Critical Thinking & Research Methods
  • Introduction to Statistics
  • Quantitative Methods for Health Science
  • Data Analysis in Psychology
  • Research Methods in Psychology
  • Qualitative Research Methods in Health

English-Language Proficiency

You must be proficient in spoken and written English. If English is not your first language, you must provide evidence of English-language proficiency. The only exception to this requirement is for those who have completed an entire university degree in Canada, USA, United Kingdom, Australia or New Zealand.

The Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) is the only acceptable evidence.

  • A score of  92 (iBT) must be achieved on the TOEFL test (reading‑22, speaking‑24, listening‑24, writing‑22).
  • The TOEFL score must not be more than 2 years old at the time of the ORPAS application deadline.
  • The TOEFL code for McMaster is 0936. The department code for MSc (SLP) is 55.

How to Apply

Please carefully read the ORPAS application Guide before completing your application - ORPAS Application Guide
All applicants (domestic and international) must apply through the Ontario Rehabilitation Science Programs (ORPAS) online application service - ORPAS Application.

Fee Information

  • The ORPAS application service fee is $190
  • If you apply to only one (1) program at the School of Rehabilitation Science (either Speech-Language Pathology, Occupational Therapy or Physiotherapy), a $100 university fee is payable at the time of ORPAS online application payment submission.
  • If you apply to any combination of more than one (1) program at the School of Rehabilitation Science (i.e., SLP and OT or PT, or SLP, OT and PT), you will be charged an additional $100 university fee payable at the time of the ORPAS online application submission.
  • It is the applicant’s responsibility to ensure that ORPAS receives the application and all required supporting documentation by the required deadlines. If the application is not complete or if supporting documentation is not received within the required deadlines, the application will not be considered.
  • Application fees are non-refundable.

Make McMaster a SafeSender

Email is the primary communication tool for Admissions at McMaster University.  Important messages outlining the next steps required to complete your application and other important information will be sent to the email address associated with your application.  So after submitting an online application, please add the mcmaster.ca domain to your email ‘safe senders’ list and check your junk email box regularly.

Hotmail / Outlook users:
In order to ensure McMaster University can successfully send emails, please add us to your ‘Safe Senders List’ by using these directions:

  1. 1.  Log into Hotmail
  2. 2.  In the top right of your inbox, click “Options” and then select “More Options”
  3. 3.  Under “Junk Email” click “Safe and Blocked Senders”
  4. 4.  Under “Safe and Blocked Senders” click “Safe Senders”
  5. 5.  Type in sgswbsv@mcmaster.ca in the “Sender or domain to mark as safe” entry field and click “Add to List”

Gmail users:
Gmail accounts have been redesigned to automatically filter communications from large institutions like McMaster and categorize them as ‘Promotions’.  By creating a filter for emails from mcmaster.ca, you will ensure that all correspondence with our office is delivered to your primary inbox.  Please add  mcmaster.ca  to your ‘safe sender’ list in Gmail by following these instructions:

  1. 1.  Log into Gmail
  2. 2.  Click on the Settings icon (top right of screen – it looks like a gear).
  3. 3.  Choose “Settings” from the list.
  4. 4.  Click “Filters” at the top of the page.
  5. 5.  Click “Create a new filter”.
  6. 6.  In the “From” box in the next window, type mcmaster.ca.
  7. 7.  Click “Create filter with this search” at the bottom of the page.
  8. 8.  Click “Never send it to Spam” and “Always mark it as important”.
  9. 9.  Click “Create filter” button.

Selection Process

The top-ranked (approximately 125) applicants will be invited to participate in an in-person mini multiple interview (MMI). Personal qualities and life experiences are assessed at these “mini” interviews, two of which are written stations. These interviews will take place in person at McMaster University Campus.  Final offers of admission will be based on a combination of pre-admission GPA and MMI score. Interview dates and Offer dates can be found on the program’s website http://srs-mcmaster.ca/slp-program-information/.

Multiple Mini-Interview (MMI)
Health professionals are expected to conduct themselves in a manner that maintains public confidence in the integrity and dignity of our professions. In selecting students, we are looking for individuals who will conduct themselves in a manner befitting our professions. As such, any and all communications and interactions with the Faculty before and during admission are considered part of the admission process and may be taken into account during admission deliberations. Admission may be denied to applicants who communicate or act in a manner that may be considered inappropriate or unprofessional regardless of academic standing.

What are Multiple Mini-Interviews (MMIs)?*
McMaster has always been an innovator in the field of medical education. The Multiple Mini-Interview, or MMI, is one example of how McMaster has approached an accepted process, like the traditional interview, and revolutionized it. Researchers at McMaster hypothesized that increasing the number of encounters for each interviewed applicant would lead to a more reliable assessment of the individual. This proved to be exactly the case. The MMI increases the overall reliability of the interview in judging an applicant's merits. It also dilutes the effect of a single misrepresentative showing by an applicant in any one interaction. Pioneered at McMaster in 2002, the MMI has been adopted at other schools across both Canada and the United States and internationally.

What can I Expect from an MMI?
The MMI consists of a series of short, carefully timed interview stations in an attempt to draw multiple samples of applicants’ ability to think on their feet, critically appraise information, communicate their ideas, and demonstrate that they have thought about some of the issues that are relevant to healthcare practice.

During the MMI, applicants will move between interview "stations" in a multi-station circuit. Each station lasts eight minutes and there is a two-minute break between each one. At each station, applicants will interact with a single rater. Topics to be discussed in interviews may include but are not limited to, communication, collaboration, ethics, health policy, critical thinking, awareness of health issues in Canada, and personal qualities.

Applicants have reached this stage of the admissions process because their academic performance has been sufficiently high. For this reason we will not test applicants’ specific knowledge in any given subject. We are, however, trying to assess the applicant’s ability to apply general knowledge to issues relevant to the culture and society in which they will be practicing should they gain admission to (and graduate from) the Speech-Language Pathology program. Equally important is the applicant’s ability to communicate and defend his or her personal opinions.

* Adapted from McMaster University School of Medicine

Policy and Procedures

  • As per the McMaster University School of Graduate Studies Calendar, admission is competitive; meeting the minimum requirements does not guarantee admission.  The admission decision is not subject to appeal.
  • The School of Rehabilitation Science does not provide feedback to applicants concerning their performance on the multiple mini interview.
  • Applications from one year are not held over to another year.
  • The MSc Speech-Language Pathology Program does not allow successful applicants to defer their start date.
  • There is no provision for advance standing or transfer into the MSc Speech-Language Pathology Program.
  • Applicants should understand that where it is discovered that any application information is false or misleading, or has been concealed or withheld, the application will be deemed invalid, and the matter will be forwarded to the Office of Academic Integrity.  If the student has already been admitted and registered, withdrawal from the university may be required, pending a university investigation.

Professionalism is an important requirement of the McMaster Speech-Language Pathology Program.  In keeping with the standard of excellence required in our program, we expect applicants to the MSc(SLP) program to conduct themselves in a professional manner throughout all phases of the application process. Any and all interactions throughout the admissions process, where applicants are engaged with Speech-Language Pathology program staff, faculty, students, and/or community volunteers may be taken into consideration in making admissions decisions. Admission may be denied to applicants who, among other critical determinants, behave in a manner that is considered below the level of professionalism expected of similarly situated candidates, regardless of their academic standing or interview performance.

For further information, please contact:
Email: askSLP@mcmaster.ca

Assessment of Foreign Transcripts & TOEFL Requirements

Applicants with foreign transcripts, excluding the United States, United Kingdom, Australia or New Zealand are required to submit the following:

    1. Original Documents
    2. Notarized English copies of all degree course work completed to date, including the diploma or degree awarded.
    3. If possible, a legend from the university explaining the grading scale should also be submitted
    4. If your first language is not English, a TOEFL score of 92 (iBT) (reading-22, speaking-24, listening-24, writing-22) is required. The only exception to this requirement is for those who have completed an entire university degree in Canada, U.S.A, United Kingdom, Australia or New Zealand. The TOEFL score must be sent directly from the TOEFL Centre to McMaster University (McMaster code: 0936, Department codes: SLP - 55) Scores that are more than two years old are not valid.

NOTE: All non‑English documentation must be accompanied by an official English translation completed by a certified translator. All other criteria for international applicants are the same as those identified in the admission requirements.

For further information, please contact:
Email: askSLP@mcmaster.ca

Indigenous Applicants - New Application Procedures for 2019

Indigenous Specific Criteria for Admissions to the SLP Program

  • four-year baccalaureate degree (120 units/credits) with a minimum average of B+ or 3.3/4.0 or 9.0/12.0, calculated over the last 60 units of university course work. Applicants may apply in the 4th year of their degree.
  • one linguistics course at any level with a grade of B or higher;
  • one relevant course in psychology at a second-year levelor higher (e.g., child development, developmental psychology, aging and perception, cognition) with a grade of B or higher;
  • one biological-science course at any level with a grade of B or higher; and
  • one research methods or statistics course at any level with a grade of B or higher.

Applicants wishing to apply to the SLP program with the Indigenous specific requirements, must complete the following:

  1. Go to the ORPAS Website to complete your application and submit the required fees
  2. Go to McMaster University’s Facilitated Indigenous Admissions Program (FIAP) webpage,  read & complete the supplemental Self-Identification Application https://ishs.mcmaster.ca/admissions/self-identification, and submit to the Indigenous Students Health Sciences Office by Friday, January 4th, 2019.

Indigenous applicants who meet the above criteria and have a FIAP endorsed application will be automatically invited to come for an interview (MMI).

Please note, only endorsed FIAP applications will be reviewed under the Indigenous specific criteria for admissions to the SLP program.

Email: askSLP@mcmaster.ca

Please click here to visit Indigenous Students Health Sciences.

Please note that we will be available for questions at the FHS Open House
Date: October 25th, 2018
Time: 11:00 am to 2:00 pm
Location: MUSC Marketplace, McMaster University

  • October 18, 2019 - ORPAS opens for applications
  • January 4, 2019 - ORPAS application deadline
  • January 30, 2019 - initial transcripts due to ORPAS
  • March 1, 2019 - MMI offers sent out  ---- Please add sgswbsv@mcmaster.ca to your safe senders list to ensure that you receive our emails.
  • March 9, 2019 - MMIs take place
  • April 2, 2019 - Offers of admission sent out  ---- Please add sgswbsv@mcmaster.ca to your safe senders list to ensure that you receive our emails.
  • April 16: Expiry date for first-round offers
  • April 30 - Provisional acceptances become firm

Important Dates & FAQs

Will you be holding an Open House event for new students?
We will be available for questions at the FHS Open House
Date: October 25th, 2018
Time: 11:00 am to 2:00 pm
Location: MUSC Marketplace, McMaster University
We welcome questions via email at askslp@mcmaster.ca

Are letters of reference required to apply?
Reference letters are not required to apply and will not be reviewed if submitted with the application.

Can my prerequisite course(s) be in progress at the time of application?
Yes, if a prerequisite course is in progress at the time of your application, it will need to meet the following criteria:

  • Be indicated on your transcripts as in progress at the time of application
  • Be completed by with a minimum grade of B, and shown on your final transcripts, submitted by June 30th.

When will the SLP program become Accredited?
In accordance with guidelines from the Council for Accreditation of Canadian University Programs in Speech-Language Pathology (CACUP), we will be applying for Candidacy prior to graduation of the first cohort of students. Students graduating from a Candidate program are entitled to register to practice in Ontario. We have designed the program to meet national standards for accreditation and provincial standards for registration and licensure in Ontario, so we expect that the program will receive Candidate status. As required by CACUP, within three years, the program will apply for Accreditation.

What are the fees/tuition for the SLP program.
The fee information is updated annually and can be found here 2018-19 SLP Program Fees

How is my sub-GPA calculated?
The process ORPAS uses to calculate sub-GPAs, including courses that are and are not included, can be found here https://www.ouac.on.ca/faq/how-is-my-sub-gpa-calculated/

I do not live in Hamilton, can the MMIs be offered by phone/on-line?
At this time, MMIs are only available in person, as scheduled.

What are the admission dates & deadlines?
Please see our SLP Admissions page for full details, including the 2019 Admission Dates

General Information

Mailing Address:

School of Rehabilitation Sciences
Faculty of Health Sciences, McMaster University
Institute of Applied Health Sciences,
Room 403, 1400 Main St. W. Hamilton, ON L8S 1C7


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