Speech-Language Pathologists and Audiologists Frequently Asked Questions

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 Speech-Language Pathologists and Audiologists 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. I was fingerprinted for my DSHS license. Do I have to be fingerprinted again?
No, you do not need to be fingerprinted again.

5. Did the supervision requirements for Licensed Speech-Language Pathology Assistants change?
The new TDLR rule on the supervision of Licensed Speech-Language Pathology Assistants may be found at Title 16, Texas Administrative Code, §111.50 (g). The rule requires:

  • at least eight hours of supervision per month;
  • at least four of the eight hours must be direct supervision;
  • at least two of the four direct supervision hours must be in person and onsite where the assistant is providing therapy; and
  • up to six of the eight hours may be via telepractice/telehealth without applying for an exception.

Direct supervision implies face-to-face observation of direct client contact at the work/clinic site. For two of the required four hours of direct supervision, the supervisor must be physically present where the therapy is occurring. For the remaining two hours, the supervisor may directly supervise the direct client contact via telepractice/telehealth. If a supervisor is not using telepractice/telehealth, all four of the direct supervision hours must be in person and onsite where the assistant is providing therapy.

Examples of in-direct supervision are other monitoring activities, such as telephone conferences with the licensed assistant, evaluating the licensed assistant’s records and correspondence, reviewing videotapes of the licensed assistant’s therapy, and discussing the licensed assistant’s performance with professional colleagues. Telepractice/telehealth may be used for in-direct supervision. For instance, a supervisor may wish to video conference with an assistant to discuss areas for improvement. This would be considered in-direct supervision because it does not occur during actual client contact.

6. Did the written exam process or requirements change?
No, the Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology written exam (praxis exam) will continue to be a national exam administered by the Educational Testing Service (ETS).

7. What is the cost of the jurisprudence exam and who administers it?
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.

8. 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.

9. Did the continuing education process or requirements change?
No, the continuing education process and requirements remain the same.

10. 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.

Applying for a License

1. If I am completing my ASHA CFY do I still need to obtain an Intern License with TDLR?
In order to complete the required 36-week internship in Texas, an Intern in Speech-Language Pathology license is required. An intern may pursue the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association Clinical Fellowship Year (ASHA CFY) simultaneously; however, approval from ASHA to begin the CFY is not a license to practice in Texas.

2. Is there reciprocity with other states?
No. In order to obtain licensure with the state of Texas you must submit an initial license application and meet the requirements for licensure.

3. I graduated with a master’s degree in communication disorders more than ten years ago.  Am I able to obtain an intern in speech-language pathology license?

If you have a master’s degree in communicative sciences or disorders, but the degree was conferred more than ten years ago, you must submit proof of current knowledge of the practice of speech-language pathology with your application.  TDLR will review the documentation to verify that you possess current knowledge of the practice of speech-language pathology.

Examples of proof of current knowledge may include: recently completing continuing education or other courses; holding a current license in another state; holding a current ASHA certification; writing a research paper; having letters of recommendation; having letters of good standing; or showing relevant and related work experience. This list of examples is not an exhaustive list.  TDLR will review the documentation you submit.

Please refer to §111.40(d) regarding the proof of current knowledge requirement.

4. I graduated with a bachelor’s degree in communication disorders more than ten years ago.  Am I able to obtain an assistant in speech-language pathology license?

If you have a baccalaureate degree with an emphasis in communicative sciences or disorders, but the degree was conferred more than ten years ago, you must submit proof of current knowledge of the practice of speech-language pathology with your application.  TDLR will review the documentation to verify that you possess current knowledge of the practice of speech-language pathology. 

Examples of proof of current knowledge may include: recently completing continuing education or other course; holding a current license in another state; writing a research paper; having letters of recommendation; having letters of good standing; or showing relevant and related work experience.  This list of examples is not an exhaustive list.  TDLR will review the documentation submitted. 

Please refer to §111.50(b)(2) regarding the proof of current knowledge requirement.

General

1. What is telehealth?
Telehealth is the use of telecommunications and information technologies for the exchange of information from one site to another for the provision of speech-language pathology or audiology services to a client from a provider.

2. Can I use telehealth to provide client services?
Please refer to TAC 111.212 and 111.213 for the requirements for the use of telehealth and restrictions.

3. What title can I use to shorten my professional title?

Assistants in speech-language pathology may use "Assistant SLP" or “SLP Assistant" to shorten their professional title.

As an Intern in speech-language pathology, you may use “Intern SLP” OR “SLP Intern.”

4. If I change my name or address, do I notify TDLR?
Yes, you need to notify TDLR in writing. Download the Notice of Change and Duplicate License Request form (79KB PDF).

5. Does TDLR prohibit licensees from providing certain services?
A licensee is only authorized to a specific scope of practice as stated in the Speech-Language Pathologists and Audiologists law and rules.

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. I am currently working under contract as a speech-language pathologist in a school district. I accepted a position with a private company and gave my two-week notice to the school district. The school district told me that it is going to file a complaint against my license for client abandonment. Can it do this? Is my license in jeopardy?

TDLR does not regulate employment contracts or employer/employee issues related to speech-language pathology. There is no TDLR rule related to client abandonment due to termination of employment.

Anyone may file a complaint, but if the alleged violation is not an actual violation of program rules, then the complaint should not result in a disciplinary action. Please note that professional associations may have different policies related to client abandonment and they should be contacted directly for more information on their policies.

8. Can I order a new certificate from TDLR to be framed?
Yes. Download the duplicate license request form. Submit the completed form and the fee to the address on the form.

9. Are disciplinary actions posted on the TDLR web site?

Disciplinary actions are posted on our web site once final orders have been processed. View disciplinary actions now.

To view disciplinary actions taken under Department of State Health Services, please submit an open records request.