Frequently Asked Questions

What is STEP?

STEP stands for the Swallowing Training and Education Portal, where our mission is to make swallowing training and education affordable and accessible to all. It is a subscription-based dysphagia course library and your all-in-one learning solution for swallowing training and education. STEP offers unlimited access to 75+ hours of low-cost, high-quality, evidence-based courses and resources created by experts, on a wide variety of topics ranging from the normal swallow to swallowing assessment and treatment, as well as professional issues in dysphagia management. Visit the ABOUT page to learn more. 

Who is STEP for?

STEP courses are for anyone wanting to advance their knowledge and understanding of swallowing and swallowing disorders. STEP is for students, professors, clinical supervisors, clinical fellows, new grads, seasoned clinicians and everyone else in between. Our goal is to help each of you improve your own knowledge and skills in the area of swallowing disorders, irrespective of your level or setting, to ultimately help improve patient outcomes and lives. 

Why was STEP created?

Formal and informal academic training in the area of dysphagia is not entirely comprehensive. An increasing number of students and clinicians have reported feeling inadequately prepared to provide competent care to patients with swallowing impairments. STEP was created by renowned swallowing researcher Dr. Ianessa Humbert and medical speech-language pathologist Rinki Varindani Desai in 2018, to serve as an affordable all-in-one evidence-based learning solution - filling the gap between knowledge and practice for all those involved in dysphagia management.

What are the different "STEPS"?

STEP offers a wide variety of swallowing-related educational courses organized into different STEPS (course types) such as: Swallowing Neuro Anatomy and Physiology Shorts (SNAPS), Foundations, Critical Thinking in Dysphagia Management (CTDM), Dysphagia Grand Rounds (DGR), Dysphagia Cafe (DC), Down the Hatch (DtH) and STEP Snippets (mini-tutorials). These are further organized by content into four learning modules namely: Normal Swallowing, Swallowing Assessment, Dysphagia Treatment, and Professional Issues. Visit the ABOUT page to learn more. Visit the COURSES page to view the curriculum for our four learning modules or to sign up for our STEP membership bundle.

Is STEP evidence-based?

We wouldn't have created it any other way! Evidence-based practice (EBP) is central to creating and curating all course content and resources for STEP.

What formats are STEP courses available in?

STEP offers courses under each learning module in MULTIPLE FORMATS including: audio, text-based and video courses. Once you sign up, STEP courses can be viewed across most computers, tablets and mobile devices with ease.

How can I join STEP?

You have unlimited access to STEP COURSES for a flat subscription rate of $15/month. There are no membership commitments. If you don’t like what you see, you can CANCEL ANYTIME

Besides our monthly subscription, you can also learn about our additional offerings such as the Swallow Physiology Masterclass, Swallowing Symposium 2020 or buy some swallow anatomy posters on STEP Merch

I teach a course in dysphagia. How can I incorporate STEP in my class?

We recognize how challenging it can be to cover all of swallowing and dysphagia in one or two semesters. Teaching swallow anatomy and physiology too can be hard, without detailed and engaging video tutorials. This is where STEP comes in as a resource! STEP is ideal for use as a teaching tool in your in-person or online dysphagia coursework. Instructors can have students sign up individually or contact us for bulk pricing options. All instructors who use STEP in their class will receive a FREE subscription for that duration. If you are an instructor, supervisor, or clinical team lead wanting to learn more about STEP bulk licenses, please email us at

How can I cancel my STEP monthly subscription?

Members can cancel their STEP subscription anytime. Follow these steps to end your active subscriptions. Sign in to your STEP account and select My Account (top right corner). Select the Billing tab. To end recurring payments, from My Account > Billing, click Cancel to end your current subscription. Email us at with any questions. 

Can I participate in STEP if I live outside the US?

Absolutely! STEP courses were created to be accessible to everyone, around the globe. Anyone can participate and learn on STEP, as long as you have internet access and a viewing device. 

Who created STEP?

STEP is the brainchild of swallowing researcher Dr. Ianessa Humbert and speech-language pathologist Rinki Varindani Desai, who saw a critical need to create a low-cost, high-quality, all-in-one learning platform for swallowing training and education, that was evidence-based and engaging. Visit About STEP and scroll to the bottom to learn more about our founders. 

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