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Tennessee Support Personnel Requirements

The following information includes speech-language pathology and audiology support personnel requirements in educational and other practice settings. The information is reviewed on an annual basis. Please be advised that regulations and policy may change at any time, so always check with your state for the most up-to-date information.

Speech-Language Pathology

School Setting Requirements

Support personnel are not regulated in the Tennessee schools.

Statutory and Regulatory Requirements

  1. Speech-language pathology assistants (SLPA) must register with the Tennessee Board of Communications Disorders and Sciences through their supervising licensee; registration is valid for two years.
  2. Speech-language pathology assistants (SLPA) must have completed a program of study designed to prepare the student to be a speech language pathology assistant.
  3. The applicant must have earned 60 college-level semester credit hours in a program of study that includes general education and the specific knowledge and skills for a SLPA. The training program shall include a minimum of 100 clock hours of field experiences supervised by a licensed speech-language pathologist (SLP).
  4. The 100 hours of supervised field work experiences must provide appropriate experiences for learning the job responsibilities and workplace behaviors of an SLPA. These experiences are not intended to develop independent practice.
  5. If the applicant's academic institution doesn't provide the full 100 hours of supervised field work experience by a licensed SLP, then the applicant must register with the licensure Board. They then have 30–90 days to acquire the full 100 clock hours of field experience needed to become a fully credentialed SLPA.
  6. An SLPA shall be clearly identified as such by a badge worn during all contact with the client.
  7. The supervising licensee shall provide 15 hours of training for tasks assigned the SLPA during the first 30 days.
  8. Any licensed SLP may delegate specific clinical tasks to a registered SLPA who has completed sufficient training.
  9. The supervising licensee must provide direct observation during the first 10 hours of client contact and direct supervision of not less than 10% of an SLPA's time each week; the supervising licensee shall provide indirect supervision of not less than 20% of the SLPA's time each week.
  10. At all times, the supervising licensee shall be available at a minimum by telephone whenever the SLPA is performing clinical activities.
  11. SLPAs must complete a minimum of five hours of continuing education each calendar year.
  12. Supervising licensees shall supervise no more than 2 SLPAs concurrently.


School Setting Requirements

Audiology support personnel are not regulated in school settings.

Statutory and Regulatory Requirements

Audiology support personnel are not regulated.


For further information on laws and regulations for speech-language pathology and audiology support personnel in educational and other practice settings, please visit this website:

To see where your state stands on support personnel licensure trends, please view the trends charts which are updated annually:

Questions regarding state advocacy issues? Call ASHA at 800-498-2071 and ask for the State Advocacy Team.

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