Speech-Language Pathology Prerequisite (SLPP) Program

Coming soon! This program launches in Fall 2023. We are now accepting applications, see details. 

Join us at our Virtual Open House
Tuesday, February 7, 2023 at 4:00 p.m.
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Do you have a bachelor’s degree in a field other than communication disorders but want to transition into a top-rated career as a Speech-Language Pathologist (SLP)?

The Gwynedd Mercy University Speech-Language Pathology Prerequisite (SLPP) program is designed for college graduates who:

  • Desire a career in the rapidly growing field of speech-language pathology but did not major in communication disorders or speech-language pathology as undergraduates
  • Do not have the prerequisite coursework necessary for admission to a Speech-Language Pathology graduate program 

This one-year online SLPP program prepares students to meet the admissions curriculum criteria for GMercyU's Master of Science in Speech-Language Pathology (MS SLP) program, as well as for other speech-language pathology graduate programs with similar requirements.


The Speech-Language Pathology Prerequisite (SLPP) program aligns with the university mission as it prepares students to enter a graduate program which will lead to successful careers and meaningful lives in a global society as speech-language pathologists.

About the Program 

The Speech-Language Pathology Prerequisite (SLPP) Program consists of 21 credits of undergraduate, upper-level Speech-Language Pathology & Audiology core coursework which can be completed in as few as three semesters (3 courses in fall, 3 courses in spring & 1 course in summer).

The classes align with the GMercyU semester terms, but take place during 7-week intervals (i.e., two courses in the first 7 weeks of fall & spring semesters, and one course held during the second 7 weeks of fall & spring semesters). Each course is offered one time per year.

The Speech-Language Pathology Prerequisite (SLPP) program is designed to accommodate students who may be working or have other regular commitments while still offering personal attention and opportunities to get to know the GMercyU SLP faculty. All SLPP classes will be held online and take place in a combination of synchronous and asynchronous formats. Each course will have two-to-three pre-scheduled synchronous class meetings spaced out over the semester calendar. The remainder of the course will be delivered asynchronously. Course instructors will also be available through regularly scheduled virtual office hours.

Students who enroll in the Speech-Language Pathology Prerequisite (SLPP) program will be eligible to submit an application to GMercyU's and other SLP master’s programs after the first fall semester of the SLPP program and enroll in an SLP graduate program the following fall semester (assuming an offer of admission and completion of all prerequisite courses).

Students may also tailor the program to fit their needs such as electing to take fewer courses each semester (1-2 courses/semester) or to begin the program during the spring or summer semester. Students who have completed one or more of the courses at a different institution may elect to enroll in only the courses they need to build eligibility for graduate school applications.

The typical course sequence for students completing the full Speech-Language Pathology Prerequisite (SLPP) program in one year:

Fall - First 7 weeks of Semester

  • SLP 410: Language Development (3 credits)
  • SLP 420: Anatomy & Physiology of Speech, Language, & Swallowing (3 credits)

Fall – Second 7 weeks of Semester

  • SLP 400: Phonetics (3 credits)

Spring – First 7 weeks of Semester

  • SLP 430: Introduction to Audiology & Aural Rehabilitation (3 credits)
  • SLP 440: Introduction to Language Disorders (3 credits)

Spring – Second 7 weeks of Semester

  • SLP 450: Speech & Hearing Science (3 credits)

Summer – First Session – 7 Weeks

  • SLP 460: Clinical Observation & Techniques (3 credits)

  • Students who complete at least three of the seven online courses will be given a preferred application status to the GMercyU MS SLP program.
  • Classes are offered completely online.
  • Designed to be completed in one year.
  • Mixed course format allows for student convenience while facilitating the development of networking relationships with peers and maximizing interaction with GMercyU faculty.

The following provides a detailed description of courses offered in the Speech-Language Pathology Prerequisite (SLPP) program. All courses are three credits and taught online in a mixed synchronous & asynchronous format.

SLP 400: Phonetics: Focuses on the typical production of speech sounds, transcribing speech using the International Phonetic Alphabet, and analyzing the acoustic properties of speech sounds. It provides a foundation for understanding typical and atypical speech development and patterns and regional and foreign accents. The course also includes an introduction to speech sound disorders in pediatric populations.

SLP 410: Language Development: Focuses on the development of spoken and written language in humans from birth through early adulthood. The course emphasizes the role of environment and human biological factors utilized in learning to communicate with words, sentences, and narratives. It also covers the development of reading and writing.

SLP 420: Anatomy & Physiology of Speech, Language, & Swallowing: Provides foundational information of the structures(anatomy), function (physiology), and neural controls of the structures used for speech, language, swallowing, respiration, and related behaviors in humans. Particular emphasis will be placed on neurological structures & functions associated with speech, language, and swallowing.

SLP 430: Introduction to Audiology & Aural Rehabilitation: Presents basic principles and techniques of hearing evaluation, including pure-tone, speech, immittance, and advanced audiometry; hearing conservation in hospital, school, and industrial settings. It also covers an introduction to aural rehabilitation including identification, evaluation, and rehabilitation of auditory pathologies.

SLP 440: Introduction to Language Disorders: Provides students with an introductory understanding of the causes, characteristics, assessment, and treatment of spoken and written language disorders. Examines a variety of congenital and acquired language & literacy disorders in preschool, school age, and adolescent populations.

SLP 450: Speech & Hearing Science: Focuses on the primary aspects of the speech and hearing processes including sounds in the environment (physical acoustics), sounds encoded within the auditory system (physiological acoustics), and perception of sound (psychological acoustics).

SLP 460: Clinical Observation & Techniques: Provides students with the knowledge and skills to conduct, record, interpret, and analyze clinical observations of assessment and intervention of clients with communication disorders. Students will complete 25 hours of clinical observation in the field and through Master Clinician Network, an online platform for guided observation and development of clinical skills in speech-language pathology.

Karen A. Fallon, PhD, CCC-SLP
Position: Professor and Director of the Speech-Language Pathology MS Program
Did You Know? Dr. Fallon’s clinical research focuses on supporting children and adolescents with language-based learning disabilities and she has disseminated her scholarly work at international, national, and state conferences and in multiple peer-reviewed journals and book chapters. 
Read bio

Alison N. Boyle, MS, CCC-SLP
Professor of Practice and the Director of Clinical Education of the Speech-Language Pathology MS Program 
Did You Know? Ms. Boyle has been a certified and licensed Speech-Language Pathologist for over 10 years and has expertise working in medical speech-language pathology with the adult population. 
Read bio


Students enrolled in the Speech-Language Pathology Prerequisite (SLPP) program come from a wide range of backgrounds. Applicants are required to have successfully completed a baccalaureate degree, regardless of major, from an accredited college or university before the start of the SLPP program and should hold a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0 (based on a 4.0 scale).

Take the first step in pursuing a meaningful career dedicated to the care and advancement of human communication and swallowing and apply today. 

The GMercyU SLPP program uses a rolling admissions approach with an application deadline of June 1 for enrollment in fall courses. With this method, completed applications are reviewed as they are received, select candidates are invited for an interview, and subsequently, admission decisions are made until the program is full. 

The required materials include:

  • Application 
  • Official transcripts from all undergraduate coursework (minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0 based on a 4.0 scale)
  • Current resume or curriculum vitae (CV)

All application requirements can be emailed to gradadmissions@gmercyu.edu. After all application materials are submitted, students who meet the program requirements will be contacted by a faculty member of the SLPP program to set up an interview. For the 2023-24 application cycle, interviews will be held virtually via Zoom.

Students who complete at least three of the seven online courses will be given preferred application status when applying to the GMercyU MS SLP program.

This status will guarantee SLPP students:

  1. An expedited application process
  2. A guaranteed interview with MS SLP admissions committee
  3. An early admission decision with no obligation to respond to the offer of admission until April 15
Students who have completed fewer than three SLPP courses may apply through the normal GMercyU graduate online application. SLP application coming soon!

The following are the 2023-2024 rates for the Speech-Language Pathology Prerequisite (SLPP) program: 

  • SLPP per credit: $396.00
  • Each SLPP 3-credit course: $1,188.00
  • The entire SLPP 7-course (21 credit) program = $8,316.00

Have questions or want to learn more? Contact gradadmissions@gmercyu.edu.