|(a) This section establishes the requirements and procedures
for continuing education. These requirements are intended to maintain
and improve the quality of their professional services in fitting
and dispensing of hearing instruments that are provided to the public;
to keep the licensee knowledgeable of current research, techniques
and practices; and to provide other resources which will improve skill
and competence in the fitting and dispensing of hearing instruments.
(b) A minimum of 20 contact hours of continuing education
is required to be completed during each two-year renewal period. A
two-year renewal period begins on the first day after the previous
license expiration date and ends on the new license expiration date.
(c) A contact hour shall be 55 minutes of attendance
in an approved continuing education course.
(d) No more than 10 contact hours per renewal period
may be earned from an approved online continuing education course
offered by an approved continuing education sponsor.
(e) No more than 5 contact hours per renewal period
may be earned from an approved continuing education course offered
by an approved manufacturer continuing education sponsor.
(f) On written request to the department, a licensee
may take the state licensing examination. A licensee who pays the
examination fee and passes the examination shall be exempt from the
continuing education requirement for the renewal period in which the
examination is taken.
(g) A licensee may be credited with continuing education
hours for a published book or article written by the licensee that
contributes to the licensee's professional competence. The continuing
education subcommittee may grant credit hours based on the degree
that the published book or article advanced knowledge regarding the
fitting and dispensing of hearing instruments. No more than 5 contact
hours per renewal period may be granted for preparation of a publication.
(h) The committee may renew the license of a licensee
who has not complied with the continuing education requirements if
(1) has served in the regular armed forces of the United
States during any part of the 24 months before the end of the two-year
(2) submits proof from an attending physician that
the licensee suffered a serious disabling illness or physical disability
that prevented compliance with the continuing education requirements
during the 24 months before the end of the two-year renewal period;
(3) was licensed for the first time during the 24 months
before the end of the two-year renewal period.
(i) If selected for audit, a licensee shall provide
written proof of compliance with this section, including written proof
of attendance or completion of approved courses completed during the
(j) Course categories. Continuing education shall be
acceptable if the education is described in subsection (f) or (g)
of this section or falls in one or more of the following categories:
(1) participation in approved continuing education
courses offered by approved continuing education sponsors;
(2) completion of academic courses at an accredited
college or university in areas directly supporting development of
skills and competence in the fitting and dispensing of hearing instruments;
(3) participation or teaching in programs directly
related to the fitting and dispensing of hearing instruments (e.g.,
institutes, seminars, workshops, or conferences) which are approved
or offered by an accredited college or university.
(k) In accordance with the Act, continuing education
courses must be provided by a department-approved continuing education
sponsor. An individual or organization may request approval as a continuing
education sponsor by submitting an application to the department.
The department may consult as needed with a committee member designated
by the presiding officer regarding the approval of continuing education
(l) After review of the continuing education sponsor
application, the applicant may be approved by the department as either
a manufacturer continuing education sponsor or a non-manufacturer
continuing education sponsor.
(m) Upon approval, the continuing education sponsor
applicant shall pay the continuing education sponsor fee as set out
in §141.6 of this title (relating to Application Procedures).
The approved sponsor status shall be effective for one year from the
date of receipt of the sponsor fee.
(n) Continuing education sponsors are required to renew
their approved sponsor status annually by completing and returning
to the department the sponsor renewal form and the continuing education
sponsor fee. If not renewed on or before the annual renewal date,
the continuing education sponsor must reapply for approved sponsor
(o) The definitions of "manufacturer" and "non-manufacturer"
found in §141.2 of this title (relating to Definitions) do not
apply to a continuing education sponsor approved prior to September
1, 2011 and who was designated by the continuing education subcommittee
as either a manufacturer or non-manufacturer sponsor. If a continuing
education sponsor approved prior to September 1, 2011 does not renew
the annual sponsor approval, that sponsor must comply with all requirements
and procedures of this section upon reapplication for approved sponsor
(p) Each continuing education course offered by an
approved sponsor must be submitted to the department on the required
course approval form.
(q) The department shall approve all continuing education
courses submitted by approved sponsors. The department may consult
as needed with a committee member designated by the presiding officer
regarding the approval of continuing education courses.
(r) Each continuing education course will be evaluated
by the department on the basis of the following criteria:
(1) relevance of the subject matter to increase or
support the development of skills and competence in the fitting and
dispensing of hearing instruments or in studies or disciplines related
to fitting and dispensing of hearing instruments;
(2) objectives of specific information and skills to
be learned; and
(3) subject matter, educational methods, materials,
qualifications of instructors and presenters, and facilities utilized,
including the frequency and duration of sessions, and the adequacy
to implement learner objectives.
(s) Approved sponsors who offer online continuing education
must submit each course for approval. Course approval shall not be
given for a website or domain name.
(t) Approved continuing education courses and sponsors
will be listed on the department's website.
(u) An organization or individual who meets the required
criteria and is approved by the department may advertise as an approved
sponsor of continuing education for licensed fitters and dispensers
of hearing instruments.
(v) Each continuing education sponsor shall provide
each participant with a certificate of completion that documents the
participant's name, the continuing education course number, the number
of approved continuing education hours, the title and date(s) of the
program as approved by the department, and the name of the approved
continuing education sponsor.
(w) To receive credit for completion of academic work
the licensee must submit an official transcript(s) from accredited
school(s) showing completion of hours in appropriate areas for which
the licensee received a passing grade.
(x) The committee will not give continuing education
credit to any licensee for:
(1) education incidental to the regular professional
activities of a licensee such as knowledge gained through experience
(2) organization activity such as serving on committees
or councils or as an officer in a professional organization; and
(3) any program which is not described in, or in compliance
with, this section.