Practicing Speech Pathology


Important: The information on this page is intended to provide you with the basics of the credentialing process. It is your responsibility to contact your provincial regulatory body to ensure you are familiar with the process to return. While we review this content on an annual basis, it is subject to change at any time. Please ensure you review all information provided by the regulatory bodies for the most up-to-date information. OzTREKK is not responsible for your credentialing process.​

Graduate degrees in speech pathology and audiology from Australian universities are recognized by the Speech-Language & Audiology Canada (SAC) and provincial regulatory bodies for practicing in Canada, providing the necessary clinical and coursework hours were completed within the program.

To become licensed in either profession in Canada, you are required to have completed a minimum number of clinical/instruction hours in the other discipline. As an example, to become an speech pathologist in Canada, you must have studied and practiced audiology as well. The total amount of clinical and instruction hours required to become licensed vary depending on the province, and from the requirements to become clinically certified by the SAC (optional), there are a separate list of requirements. Clinical hours may include relevant undergraduate studies, so the number of hours each student will need to take in the program may vary.

It’s the student’s responsibility to contact their provincial regulatory body to ensure they understand the requirements and process to become licensed when they return, and they should track their hours during the program to make sure they have enough for certification.

The process

How do you become a speech pathologist in Canada?

First, you will need to complete a postgraduate degree like a Master of Speech Pathology. To become licensed to practice professionally as a speech pathologist or an audiologist in Canada, you must go through a provincial regulatory board in the province in which you would like to live and work.

Here’s a general breakdown of the process:

1. Meet Clinical Hours
Be sure to advise your faculty of the hours you need to meet licensing requirements for the province in which you would like to work (and optionally SAC requirements for Clinical Certification). Remember, these hours are not tracked for you by the university; however, they will work with you to ensure that your clinical placements align with what you need to return home.

2. Credentialing
After graduation, you will apply for provincial licensure and have your educational background assessed for eligibility. Once approved, you will apply for your Initial Certificate of Registration (or have 2 years’ experience) and complete a six-month clinical mentorship, after which you may apply for full licensure.

3. Canadian Entry to Practice Examination
The CETP Exam is a national, standardized, competency-based entry-to-practice exam for speech-language pathologists and audiologists. It is a regulatory exam based on the competency profiles and sub-competencies recently developed by CAASPR for the purpose of regulation.

Important note: Internationally trained individuals may prepare for the application process while still enrolled in a program of study or while outside Canada by becoming familiar with Canadian registration requirements and upgrading language skills if required.

Tracking your hours

The biggest hurdle you will face is making sure that you have completed the required hours—both face-to-face class time and practical hours—in both your major speech pathology courses and your minor audiology courses.

North American universities employ task-based learning, while Australian unis use practical-based learning. The result is that North American regulatory bodies focus greatly on hours spent in learning while Australian regulatory bodies concentrate more on the quality of the work, not the time spent on it.

So, what do you do?

Get extra hours
It is certainly possible to make up extra time in clinicals and extra courses to make up class time (at your expense). Other OzTREKK alums have been successful in being certified to work as audiologists and speech pathologists in their respective provinces. Work with your faculty advisor, and he or she may be able to help you find additional practice hours.

We recommend you contact your provincial regulatory board (listed below) for the paperwork required to record your class and clinical hours—not only do you need to complete the minimum hours, but you will need to prove it, too.


As an internationally educated graduate, you will also go through a credentialing process to determine your studies are equivalent to Canada’s.

The provincial regulatory body determines the eligibility of all exam applicants who were educated outside Canada. All internationally educated exam candidates must undergo the assessment process established by the regulatory body in the province where they plan to work. Once the provincial regulatory body has completed your assessment, the CETP Exams Manager will receive confirmation of the eligibility and you may proceed with the exam enrollment during the established exam enrollment period.

Newfoundland and Labrador, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Manitoba or Saskatchewan

  • Create an account and application file with CAASPR have a credential assessment completed by a third-party agency and possibly complete language proficiency testing; and
  • Submit all required documents to CAASPR and pay the associated fees.

Quebec, Ontario, Alberta or British Columbia
You should contact the corresponding regulator and follow their process for application and assessment. If your training is assessed to be equivalent to the minimum standard for accredited Canadian training programs, and you are required to successfully complete the CETP exam, you will be advised how to enroll for the exam and pay the exam fee.

Unregulated territories
If you intend to practice in an unregulated territory, you should contact the corresponding provincial/territorial professional association to learn the process for application. Applicants planning to practice in an unregulated jurisdiction are not required to write the CETP exam but may wish to do so if they plan to move to a regulated jurisdiction in the future.

Credentialing results
If deemed successful, you will be directed to enroll for the CETP exam and pay the exam fee. If you are deemed not eligible to proceed to the exam, the regulatory body in the jurisdiction where you intended to practice will provide you specific information regarding your application.

Taking the exam

The Canadian Entry-to-Practice (CEPT) Exam is based on harmonized standards and competencies established by the Canadian Alliance of Audiology and Speech Pathology Regulators (CAASPR). 

If you have been approved to write the CETP Exam, you’ll be directed to enroll for the exam with the exam provider, Speech-Language & Audiology Canada (SAC). Some basic information from your CAASPR account will be securely transferred electronically to the exam enrollment page and you will be required to provide additional information regarding preferred examination location and language, etc., and pay the exam fee. You will have 2 years, from the date of your written eligibility confirmation, and 3 attempts to successfully complete the CETP Exam.

Important Note: Certain provinces and regulators do not require applicants to sit the CETP Exam. Applicants may, however, voluntarily undertake the exam.

Please see the CETP exam FAQs for information.

Federal organization benefits

Graduates may also join Speech Language & Audiology Canada to gain access to professional resources for development, insurance, and other benefits. They may also undertake the SAC’s Clinical Certification process, allowing the use of the S-LP(C) professional designation.

The SAC mutually recognizes master’s-level speech pathology programs at Australian universities, which streamlines the approval process. This mutual recognition does not extend to audiology programs.

Currently in Canada, eight provinces require mandatory registration with a regulatory body.

Regulatory and Licensing Bodies in Canada


Can my partner or family come to Australia with me if I get an offer? 

Many Canadians wish to fulfill their career goals after getting married, having kids, or both! We’ve had plenty of students who have taken their partner and/or children with them.

If you want to take your partner or family with you, you’ll need to add them as a secondary applicant or dependents to your student visa application. Even if you don’t plan on taking them with you, we suggest you add them to your application anyway because it can be complex, expensive, and time-consuming to add them afterwards. You’ll then need to provide additional documentation to support your claims of a relationship or your children’s dependency status.

In addition to looking after the visa, you’ll also need to ensure they’re included on your Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC), you have appropriate accommodation, and if you’re bringing children, you’ll need to enroll them in school.

Visit our Health Insurance page for more information.

When should I apply?

We recommend you begin your OzTREKK application about a year before your program would start. Most programs in Australia start between January and March, so that means you would start your OzTREKK application between January and March the year prior.

Here’s how the typical “cycle” works if your program starts January – March:

March – May: You gather all required documents like passport photo page, transcripts, résumé, personal statement, and send them to our office. Don’t worry, we’ll tell you exactly what we need!

June – August: Interviews (if your program requires one)

September – December: Offer time! If you get an offer, we’ll walk you through the acceptance (or decline) process and give you all the help you need to get ready to go.

January – March: Time to head Down Under!

Can my entire application be submitted through OzTREKK?

Absolutely. We manage and submit your application(s) on your behalf and communicate any updates from the universities.

Applying to an  Australian or New Zealand university starts by filling out our OzTREKK application: You’ll tell us a bit about yourself, like your name, address, date of birth, education history, and what schools you want to apply to!

When you click “Submit,” the application with all your information only comes to us, so there’s no need to worry about making a mistake at this stage. We then create a file for you (based on your name, not a number!) and email you a list of documents required to complete your application—things like passport photo page, transcripts, résumé, personal statement—but it depends on the program, as some programs require more paperwork than others.

If you get an offer, we’ll help you with that part, too! Whether you want to accept or decline, we’ll help you figure out your next steps. If you accept your offer, we’ll even help you get ready to go. We’re here to be an advocate for you, and to walk you through the entire process from start to finish.

Should you have any questions along the way, just send us an email or book a chat. That’s why we’re here!

Are there any scholarships for international students?

Scholarship options in Australia are usually limited for international students as they tend to be reserved for those undertaking postgraduate research degrees; however, we can advise you where to look and whether specific programs have a history of offering scholarships.

Occasionally, scholarships are granted to high achievers—those with very high marks. In previous years, we have seen $5000- to $10,000-scholarships given to OzTREKK students.

Check out OzTREKK’s Financing page to learn more about scholarships and paying for your degree.

Do you have course outlines on file? 

Before sending us outlines, check to see if we’ve already got them. We can save you a lot of time and ensure we’re submitting good outlines on your behalf. Outlines must be within 2 years of the time you took the course (as listed on your transcript).

I received a low mark on my prerequisite course. Will this impact my application? 

To meet the prerequisite subjects, you need to have been granted the credit (passed); the grade isn’t considered in the prerequisite assessment.

What does “rolling admissions” mean?

Rolling admissions means the university assesses applications as they are received, or on a “first come, first served” basis. As soon as they’ve met the quota and the program is filled, they close the applications. So, for a program that has rolling admissions, the earlier you apply the better!

How does OzTREKK know if my application will be competitive?

The majority of Canadians applying to full-degree programs in Australia (i.e., not study abroad courses, which usually only last a semester or two) apply through OzTREKK. They’re studying medicine, dentistry, law, physiotherapy, occupational therapy, etc.

Since they’re using OzTREKK’s services, this gives us a good idea of the starting point of a competitive application each year, allowing us to help you determine which universities/programs are most likely to present you with a letter of offer!

You can get started on determining your chances by reviewing the admissions requirements on each program page. Then, visit our GPA Conversions and Eligibility pages for details and suggestions to help you get into the program of your dreams. Of course, OzTREKK is always here to help if you have questions.

What is a 5.0 GPA in Australia?

Unlike in Canada, GPAs in Australia are simple. They are standardized, so they mean the same thing to everyone.

In Australia, a 5.0 / 7.0 would roughly translate to a 2.7 / 4.0 or approximately 70% – 72%, but keep in mind all universities assess slightly differently.

Learn more on our GPA Conversions page where we list the most common Canadian GPA scales to their corresponding Australian GPA grade.

Which prerequisites do I need?

Prerequisite courses vary by university and by program. We’ve listed university- and program-specific requirements on each program’s page under “Admissions Requirements.”

How do universities calculate GPA?

Calculations differ by university, but most use cumulative (all units within a program) or weighted GPA (typically last 2 or 3 years of study). See GPA Calculations for more information.

What are official transcripts, and how do I send them?

Currently, our Australian universities require original transcripts to assess your application—certified by OzTREKK, which means we have to put our stamp on paper. Literally.

Usually, students order transcripts from their high school, college and/or university and have them mailed to our office. Alternatively, you can pick up your transcripts and mail them to OzTREKK, as long as they remain in their original, sealed envelopes.

You will need to submit final transcripts (showing your degree/diploma is completed) from every institution you have attended. We only require one copy of each transcript, even if you apply to multiple universities or programs.

OzTREKK educational services
301-1 Sherbrooke St. E.
Perth, ON K7H 1A1 CANADA

Alternatively, your high school, college and/or university can email them to

P.S. Try sending your documents via FedEx and Purolator, especially when you need your documents to arrive at our office ASAP. If you use Canada Post’s courier Xpresspost, please don’t request a signature, as this can add unexpected delays!

As soon as your transcript arrives, we’ll let you know!

You don’t meet the required prerequisites

Most Australian graduate-entry speech pathology programs require a student to have completed specific undergraduate subjects.

1. Apply to programs that don’t have prerequisites
Griffith University or Flinders University don’t require prerequisite courses. Alternatively, the University of Sydney Master of Speech Language Pathology program doesn’t have prerequisites; however, you’ll be asked to complete online modules to bring your knowledge up to requirement before the start of the program. Sydney will issue the student a conditional offer with these modules as part of the conditions.

2. Enroll in the missing prerequisite(s) 
Most Australian universities will let you take non-award courses during the application season to make up the prerequisites you’re missing. This means you can submit your application with your interim transcript and proof of enrollment into the prerequisite course. Before enrolling in any prerequisite course, we advise checking with either your admissions officer or with the university to make sure the course will satisfy the prerequisite.

If you haven’t completed the prerequisite course(s) by the time offers are issued, then universities may issue a conditional offer. Please note that not all universities will issue conditional offers and it may vary for each program. It’s always best to check with OzTREKK to see if your program of interest will give conditional offers.

What are course outlines and how should I submit them to OzTREKK?

A course outline includes all the necessary information about a university course. It will include the course title, the year, the learning goals, the professor’s contact information, reading materials and most important, a weekly learning schedule. This will help the universities to see what you studied on a week-to-week basis and assess if you have covered the material they expect you to know.

  • Year and semester date
  • Faculty contact information
  • Course description
  • Hours of study
  • Textbook information
  • Detailed list of topics that are covered in the course; usually found in a detailed lecture schedule or list of chapter readings

Please note, one-paragraph course descriptions will not suffice. The university would like to see course outlines like those handed out at the beginning of the semester, which outline all topics covered within the course. If you do not have copies of these on hand, contact the faculty from which you undertook these courses, as they usually have copies on file.

These course outlines must be attached to the email in PDF (do not send PDF links) and labelled in the following manner:

CAPS 391 Human Anatomy I UBC F2015 (COURSE CODE)(Name of Course)(University)(Semester & Year)

When you do this, it helps us be more efficient and move your application(s) at lightning speed.

What if my transcripts / documents are not in English?

If your documents are not in English, you must provide full translation of each document, either prepared by your university or by a registered translator. You must not translate the documents yourself.

Please note OzTREKK must receive the official translation directly from the university or translator in order to certify the document. Please read How Do I Send My Transcripts for more information.

Can I work as a speech pathologist when I return to Canada?

You should first contact the regulatory body of the Canadian province in which you plan to work upon graduation. It will be your responsibility throughout your studies to ensure you complete the proper requirements to practice in Canada.

You must be aware of the required speech pathology (major) and audiology (minor) clinical hours to practice in your province. Most programs OzTREKK represents with do not meet Canadian certification requirements “as is.” This means you will be required to arrange and undertake additional clinical and course hours as required to meet Canadian standards.

Visit Speech-Language & Audiology Canada (SAC) to familiarize yourself with their requirements for practice in Canada.

I don’t have all the prerequisites. Can I still apply?

Unfortunately, if you do not have the required prerequisites, you are not eligible to apply. If you are missing a course or two, you can enroll in those courses before applying and we will submit your interim transcript with your application. Otherwise, you are welcome to send in a course outline you feel covers the required content. If you’re unsure, please contact OzTREKK for details.

What is the competitive GPA for speech path programs?

Anything above a 75% cGPA is considered competitive for our speech pathology programs. If you have a cGPA of 70% or lower, we don’t recommend applying.