Athletic Trainers Frequently Asked Questions

Transition from DSHS to TDLR

  1. When did the transfer happen?
  2. Now that the transfer is complete, will I need to get a new license issued by TDLR?
  3. Have the rules changed?
  4. Have continuing education requirements for the renewal of my athletic trainer license changed?
  5. What happened with open complaints and cases?
  6. How do I stay informed about changes impacting me?
  7. Why was my license expiration date extended? Will I have the same expiration date in the future?
  8. Will I have to renew on a different schedule?
  9. Why were licensing programs transferred from DSHS to TDLR?

Fees

  1. What are the license fees?

General

  1. What does a licensed athletic trainer do?
  2. Where do licensed athletic trainers work?
  3. Which law regulates athletic trainers in Texas?

Licensing

  1. Is licensure required?
  2. Is there reciprocity for licensure from other states?
  3. What are the requirements to become a licensed athletic trainer?
  4. Are athletic trainers required to hold a license in Texas?

License Renewal

  1. How does a licensed athletic trainer maintain his or her license?
  2. I need to renew my license. Where do I send my renewal application and payment?
  3. My license expired. How long do I have to renew my license?
  4. Should I wait to submit my license renewal application until after I have completed my continuing education?

Continuing Education

  1. How does a licensed athletic trainer report continuing education to the TDLR?
  2. Are licensed athletic trainers required to attend continuing education classes?

Written Examination

  1. How will I be notified when I am eligible to take the written exam?
  2. When and where are the Athletic Trainer written exams administered?
  3. How much does the written exam cost?
  4. If I fail the written exam, how soon can I schedule a retake?
  5. How many times may I retake the written exam?
  6. What is a passing score for the written exam?
  7. Will there be a study guide?

Practical Examination

  1. Do I have to pass the written exam to be eligible to take the practical exam?
  2. How will I be notified when I am eligible to take the practical exam?
  3. When and where are the Athletic Trainer practical exams administered?
  4. How much does the practical exam cost?
  5. How many times may I retake the practical exam?
  6. What is a passing score for the practical exam?
  7. Am I required to bring anything to the exam site?

Jurisprudence Examination

  1. Will the jurisprudence exams be administered in the same way?
  2. I took the jurisprudence exam for my DSHS license. Do I have to retake the jurisprudence exam?

Enforcement

  1. How do I file a complaint against a licensed athletic trainer or report unlicensed activity?

Communication

  1. How do I stay informed about changes impacting me?

Filing a Complaint

  1. How soon do I have to file a complaint?
  2. I don’t want the licensee to know I filed a complaint. May I file a complaint anonymously?
  3. Does TDLR open and investigate every complaint received?
  4. What happens after I file my complaint?
  5. What is the status of a complaint I filed?
  6. How do I know if disciplinary action was taken against a licensee or an unlicensed person or business?

Transition from DSHS to TDLR

1. When did the transfer happen?
The Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation (TDLR) assumed all activities relating to the Athletic Trainers program-including licenses and renewals, customer service and enforcement-on October 3, 2016.

2. Now that the transfer is complete, will I need to get a new license issued by TDLR?
No. The license you have now-issued by the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS)-remains valid until its expiration date. When you renew, you will receive a TDLR license.

3. Have the rules changed?
Yes, TDLR adopted rules for all of the transferred programs. Most of the newly adopted rules are very similar, but some changes have been made. The TDLR health profession rules became effective on October 1, 2016. View the rule changes and links to the TDLR rules

4. Have continuing education requirements for the renewal of my athletic trainer license changed?
Most of the requirements remain similar, but some changes have been made to the rules. DSHS limited the amount of online education that could be used for license renewal to 8 hours. TDLR rules have removed the limit to online education by allowing unlimited online continuing education hours.

5. What happened with open complaints and cases?
If you filed a complaint with DSHS or had a complaint filed against your license and it was not resolved by the transfer date, TDLR assumed responsibility for the case. You should have already received notification by mail that your complaint was transferred to TDLR.

6. How do I stay informed about changes impacting me?

You have several options to stay connected:

  • Email updates - Sign up for email updates to receive notices about rules, the law, fees, examination requirements, meetings and more. Email updates are the best way for you to stay informed.
  • Meetings - TDLR’s advisory board and Commission meetings are available to watch online live or later at your convenience.
  • Facebook and Twitter - TDLR has a Facebook page and Twitter account dedicated to TDLR Health Professions.

7. Why was my license expiration date extended? Will I have the same expiration date in the future?
To ease the transition, DSHS extended the expiration date by two months for licenses previously set to expire in August, September, and October 2016. For example, if your original expiration date was September 30, your new expiration date is November 30. If your license was extended, you will continue to renew your license in the new expiration month in the future.

8. Will I have to renew on a different schedule?
You will renew on the same schedule unless your license expired in August, September or October 2016. Licenses expiring in those months were extended for two months to ease the transition from DSHS to TDLR. If your license was extended, you will now renew in your new expiration month for future renewals. Your license expiration date will not return to your original expiration month.

9. Why were licensing programs transferred from DSHS to TDLR?
The transfer is the result of a change to Texas law. In 2015, the Texas Legislature passed Senate Bill 202, which transferred several licensing programs from the DSHS to TDLR.

Fees

1. What are the license fees?

All fees paid to TDLR are nonrefundable.

  • Application fee--$60
  • Temporary license fee--$200
  • Written examination fee--$75
  • Practical examination fee--$90
  • Initial license fee--$100
  • Returned check fee--$25
  • Renewal license--$250
  • Jurisprudence exam fee--$35

General

1. What does a licensed athletic trainer do?

A licensed athletic trainer practices a form of health care that includes preventing, recognizing, assessing, managing, treating, disposing of, and reconditioning athletic injuries. An athlete is a person who participates in an organized sport or sport-related exercise or activity. A licensed athletic trainer practices under the direction of a licensed physician.

Before games and sporting events, a licensed athletic trainer carries out injury prevention measures (such as the application of protective devices) to minimize the risk of injury during play. When an athlete is injured, a licensed athletic trainer provides emergency care and/or refers the athlete to a physician or hospital if necessary. When an injured athlete needs rehabilitation before they can return to play, a licensed athletic trainer sets up or carries out the rehabilitation plan.

2. Where do licensed athletic trainers work?
Athletic training services may be provided in any setting. These settings include, but are not limited to, high schools, colleges or universities, professional or amateur athletic organizations, athletic facilities, and health care facilities. Licensed athletic trainers provide health care services under the direction of the treating physician.

3. Which law regulates athletic trainers in Texas?
Texas Civil Statutes, Article 4512d (the Athletic Trainers Act) is the law that regulates the profession of athletic training in Texas. The law was effective on September 1, 1971 and was amended in 1973, 1975, 1981, 1983, 1997, and 1999. Effective September 1, 1999, the Act is codified in Chapter 451 of the Texas Occupations Code, although some recently amended provisions of Article 4512d remain in effect. Licensed athletic trainers are required to comply with the Act and with all state and federal laws applicable to the services they are providing.

Licensing

1. Is licensure required?
A person may not hold himself/herself out as an athletic trainer or perform any activity of an athletic trainer unless he/she holds a license under this chapter.

2. Is there reciprocity for licensure from other states?
No. An out-of-state applicant must satisfy the education requirements and submit proof of active engagement as an athletic trainer in this state to be eligible for licensure in Texas.; however, an out-of-state applicant may be eligible to become licensed without taking the Texas State Athletic Trainers Examination, under certain conditions.

3. What are the requirements to become a licensed athletic trainer?
Licensed athletic trainers must hold a college degree, meet the coursework and apprenticeship requirements set out in the program's rules, complete the application process, and successfully complete the Texas Athletic Trainer Written and Practical Examinations.

4. Are athletic trainers required to hold a license in Texas?
Yes. No person may hold himself out as an athletic trainer or perform any of the activities of an athletic trainer as defined by law without first obtaining a license or a temporary license. Certification by the Board of Certification, Inc. or certification by the State Board of Educator Certification does not meet this requirement of law.

License Renewal

1. How does a licensed athletic trainer maintain his or her license?
Licenses are valid for two years from the date of issuance. A licensee must renew the license on or before the expiration date or pay a late renewal fee. A person whose license has expired may not hold himself or herself out as an athletic trainer; imply that he or she has the title of "licensed athletic trainer," "athletic trainer" or "sports trainer," or use "LAT," "AT," or "LATC" or any facsimile of those titles in any manner. A person whose license has expired may not perform the activities of an athletic trainer. The best way to renew a license is to renew online.

2. I need to renew my license. Where do I send my renewal application and payment?
The best way to renew a license is to renew online.

3. My license expired. How long do I have to renew my license?

A late renewal, if available, means the license holder will have an unlicensed period from the expiration date of the expired license to the issuance date of the renewed license. During the unlicensed period, a person may not perform any act that requires a license under this chapter or the chapter governing the specific program. Licenses may be eligible for late renewal with the following fees:

(a) A person whose license has been expired for 90 days or less may renew the license by paying a late renewal fee equal to 1 and 1/2 times the renewal fee.

(b) A person whose license has been expired for more than 90 days but less than 18 months may renew the license by paying a late renewal fee equal to two times the renewal fee.

(c) A person whose license has been expired for more than 18 months but less than three years may request that the executive director approve the license by submitting information sufficient to show just cause for the late renewal and paying to the department a renewal fee equal to two times the normally required renewal fee.

(d) A person paying a late renewal fee is not required to pay the renewal fee in addition to the late renewal fee.

4. Should I wait to submit my license renewal application until after I have completed my continuing education?
No. You may file your renewal application at any time during your renewal period. We encourage you to file the application early so your license won’t expire and you won’t have to pay late renewal fees. To renew and maintain continuous licensure, the license holder must complete all of the renewal requirements, including continuing education requirements, prior to the expiration of the license. A complete renewal application, along with applicable fees, must be filed with TDLR or postmarked prior to license expiration to avoid payment of a late renewal fee. Any continuing education that is required to be fulfilled as part of the renewal application must be completed prior to the license expiration date to avoid payment of a late renewal fee.

Continuing Education

1. How does a licensed athletic trainer report continuing education to the TDLR?
TDLR uses an audit system for continuing education reporting. The license holder is responsible for maintaining a record of his or her continuing education experiences. The certificates, diplomas, or other documentation verifying continuing education hours should not be forwarded to TDLR at the time of renewal unless the license holder has been selected for audit. If selected for an audit, the licensee shall submit copies of certificates, transcripts or other satisfactory documentation to TDLR, verifying the licensee's attendance, participation and completion of the continuing education. All documentation must be provided at the time of renewal.

2. Are licensed athletic trainers required to attend continuing education classes?
A licensee must complete 40 clock-hours of continuing education during the previous two-year period. The continuing education must include two clock-hours of training in concussion management. In addition to the number of continuing education clock-hours required under this subsection, a licensee must also show proof of current Emergency Cardiac Care certification at the Basic Life Support for Healthcare Providers/Professional Rescuers and Healthcare Providers level or beyond, which shall be maintained throughout each two-year period. The two-year period begins on the first day following the license issuance month and ends upon the expiration date of the license.

Written Examination

1. How will I be notified when I am eligible to take the written exam?
You will receive a postcard in the mail from PSI (the company TDLR currently uses to administer exams). The postcard includes instructions for registering for the exam. PSI mails the postcard once TDLR tells them you are eligible to take the exam.

2. When and where are the Athletic Trainer written exams administered?
Starting on November 1, 2016, TDLR will begin administering computer-based written exams through our third-party vendor, PSI, at any of its many locations around Texas. Eligible candidates may schedule their exam at a time that is convenient to them. A candidate information bulletin (CIB) including the exam sites and scheduling information will be posted on TDLR's web site.

3. How much does the written exam cost?
The fee for the written exam is $75 (the same as it was at DSHS). The fee is payable to TDLR's third-party vendor, PSI.

4. If I fail the written exam, how soon can I schedule a retake?
You may schedule a retake with TDLR's third-party vendor, PSI, within 24-48 hours of your failed exam.

5. How many times may I retake the written exam?
There is no limit to the number of times you can retake the written exam (the same as it was at DSHS).

6. What is a passing score for the written exam?
The passing score is 70% or higher (the same as it was at DSHS).

7. Will there be a study guide?
Yes, a candidate information bulletin (CIB) including the number of questions on the exam, the time allotted to complete the exam, and a list of reference materials will be posted on TDLR's web site.

Practical Examination

1. Do I have to pass the written exam to be eligible to take the practical exam?
To ease the transition to TDLR, you do not have to pass the written exam to be eligible to take the practical exam administered on December 4, 2016. However, you must pass the written exam before taking the April 2017 practical exam and all later practical exams.

2. How will I be notified when I am eligible to take the practical exam?
You will receive a postcard in the mail from PSI (the company TDLR currently uses to administer exams). PSI mails the postcard once TDLR tells them you are eligible to take the exam.

3. When and where are the Athletic Trainer practical exams administered?
The practical exams will be administered on December 4, 2016 in Arlington, Houston, Lubbock, and San Antonio at the same sites used in the past. TDLR will administer the exams through our third-party vendor, PSI. The deadline to register is now November 28, 2016.

4. How much does the practical exam cost?
The fee for the practical exam is $90 (the same as it was at DSHS). The fee is payable to TDLR's third-party vendor, PSI.

5. How many times may I retake the practical exam?
There is no limit to the number of times you can retake the practical exam (the same as it was at DSHS).

6. What is a passing score for the practical exam?
The passing score is 70% or higher (the same as it was at DSHS).

7. Am I required to bring anything to the exam site?
No, you are not required to bring anything to the exam site (the same as it was at DSHS).

Jurisprudence Examination

1. Will the jurisprudence exams be administered in the same way?
The fee for the jurisprudence exam will now be $34 (one dollar less than at DSHS). The jurisprudence exams will continue to be administered by eStrategy Solutions, Inc. and the fee will still be payable to eStrategy Solutions, Inc.

2. I took the jurisprudence exam for my DSHS license. Do I have to retake the jurisprudence exam?
No, if you took the DSHS jurisprudence exam to receive your initial license, you will not need to retake it. However, if your profession requires you to retake the jurisprudence exam for license renewal, you will take the new TDLR version of the jurisprudence exam, which is based on the law and the TDLR rules for your profession.

Enforcement

1. How do I file a complaint against a licensed athletic trainer or report unlicensed activity?
Please file a complaint online.

Communication

1. How do I stay informed about changes impacting me?
Sign up for email updates to receive the latest news and information.

Filing a Complaint

1. How soon do I have to file a complaint?
You must file a complaint within two years of the event described in the complaint. TDLR will not accept complaints filed after two years unless you can show good cause for late filing to TDLR’s Executive Director.

2. I don’t want the licensee to know I filed a complaint. May I file a complaint anonymously?
Yes, TDLR accepts anonymous complaints. To file anonymously, be sure to leave the “Complaining Party” space blank on the complaint form. Keep in mind, if you file anonymously, you will not receive updates from TDLR on the status of your complaint and you will not be able to provide any additional information TDLR may need.

3. Does TDLR open and investigate every complaint received?
No. If the information you provide in your complaint does not contain enough information for TDLR to determine that a violation may have occurred, TDLR will first seek additional information from you (if you did not file anonymously). If TDLR does not receive enough information following that request, your complaint may not be opened for investigation.

4. What happens after I file my complaint?
Please see our Complaint Investigation and Resolution page for a detailed explanation of the complaint process.

5. What is the status of a complaint I filed?
TDLR will mail you quarterly notices and will inform you of the resolution of your complaint. Please keep your address and phone number updated with TDLR.

6. How do I know if disciplinary action was taken against a licensee or an unlicensed person or business?
If a complaint results in disciplinary action taken by TDLR, it will be posted in our Administrative Orders Search for three years following the signed order.