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Licensing Doctors of Optometry and Regulating the Practice of Optometry


Military, Veterans, and Military Spouse
Consult Rule 273.14 first.
 
Applying for Optometry License
STEP 1:  Please read all the information on this page, then use the "Applying for Optometry License" link at the bottom of this page.
 
 
Application Requirements
To apply for a Texas optometry license, an applicant must be either:
Eligibility: a student in the last semester of an approved optometry school in the United States or Canada who can provide a statement of good standing by the dean, or
a graduate of an approved optometry school in the United States or Canada who passed Part III of the NBEO after June 1994 (other graduates may be eligible: use this link)
 
Deadlines:  All applicants must take and pass the Jurisprudence Exam. The exam is given six times each year. Applicants choose one of the exam dates and apply for that date. An application must be received by the Board on or before the application deadline for that examination period. Separately, an applicant must also register (on or before the application deadline) with the NBEO to take the Texas Jurisprudence Exam. This is an on-line exam administered by the NBEO.
IMPORTANT NOTICE: All applicants must register with the NBEO on or before the application deadline. If you do not timely register, you cannot take the Jurisprudence Exam and must reapply, including the submission of a new application fee.
 
--Example:  An applicant looks at the Jurisprudence Exam Schedule and decides to take the July 2012 exam. The application deadline for that exam is May 16, 2012. The Texas Optometry Board must receive a completed application on or before May 16, 2012, and the applicant must also register with the NBEO on or before May 16, 2012 to take the Texas Jurisprudence Exam.
 
--Reminder: All applicants must also register with the NBEO. Use this link to register with the NBEO (on or before the application deadline) to take the Texas Jurisprudence Exam. There is a NBEO registration fee. This registration is separate from any other NBEO exam registration. See "Jurisprudence Exam Information" below for more information on the exam.
 
Forms:  To apply for a Texas optometry license, an application must be received on or before the application deadline. The link below (Applying for Optometry License) connects to the page to download the form and instructions. An acceptable application will include (see the application instructions):
a completely filled out application form,
two affidavits of moral fitness that must be notarized,
two photographs (passport quality),
an official optometry school transcript, or for students in the last semester, a certificate requiring the dean's signature and school seal, and
application fee.
 
 
License Requirements
At the end of the application process, an applicant is eligible for a Texas optometry license if the Optometry Board has received (see downloadable application instructions):
Documents completed application
Required official transcript(s) from optometry school showing awarding of O.D. degree
For License: official transcripts from all colleges attended
official birth certificate
passing scores on NBEO Parts I, II, III and the TMOD
passing scores on the Texas Jurisprudence Exam
fingerprints
if licensed, verifications from states in which licensed
additional explanatory documents, if required
 
Statute The Optometry Act also requires that an applicant has reached majority age and is of good moral character. See Section 351.254 of the Texas Optometry Act and Board Rule 271.2.
 
 
Licensed Applicants Who Did Not Take NBEO Part III After June 1994
Process:  Applicants who were licensed in another state without taking all parts of the NBEO, or who took Part III before June 1994, can apply using a different licensing process. Use the link at the bottom of the page "Applying for Optometry License." Answers to the questions will take you to the correct page.
 
 
Fingerprints
Requirement:  All applicants are required to submit fingerprints so that a criminal history check may be performed. See the application instructions and the link below.
 
 
Application Timelines
..
Time Line - Students (in last semester)
Most students apply to take the April or May Jurisprudence Exam. The application includes documents that may take some time to obtain.
Download application from this website, read instructions, complete and mail to the Board with the appropriate fee to arrive at the Board on or before the application deadline.
Register with the NBEO for the Texas Jurisprudence Exam on or before the application deadline. If you do not timely register, you cannot take the Jurisprudence Exam and must reapply, including the submission of a new application fee.
 
Incomplete applications are returned by mail. Complete and timely applications will be acknowledged by mail (during peak periods it may take several days to acknowledge a complete application).
 
Take Jurisprudence Exam. Study materials for the exam are on this website. Applicants approved to take the exam are notified of the start and finish date of the exam. Applicants passing the Jurisprudence Exam receive a letter stating that the exam has been passed.
 
If the Jurisprudence Exam is taken in April or May, the Board's receipt of NBEO Part III scores will usually determine the date that licenses can be issued. Licenses on average should be available in about three weeks after the NBEO scores are received (provided all other required documents, including a final transcript have been submitted). All documents in the file must be checked, eligibility for license determined, entries must be made in the Texas Optometry Board's computer database, forms generated, the license itself prepared, and all documents for mailing assembled before a license can be issued. The Board cannot guarantee a date of license. Telephone calls asking when licenses will be ready tend to delay the process!
 
Once the NBEO scores and all required documents have been received, applicants are sent a letter stating that the license is being prepared with instructions for submitting the required fee.
 
The initial license fee is received by the Board. A license is mailed to the applicant by U.S. Mail, Certified, Return Receipt Requested.
 
 
Time Line - Applicants Having Graduated Prior to Submitting Application
Download application from this website, read instructions, complete and mail to the Board with the appropriate fee to arrive at the Board on or before the application deadline.
Register with the NBEO for the Texas Jurisprudence Exam on or before the application deadline. If you do not timely register, you cannot take the Jurisprudence Exam and must reapply, including the submission of a new application fee.
 
Incomplete applications are returned by mail. Complete and timely applications will be acknowledged by mail (during peak periods it may take several days to acknowledge a complete application).
 
Take Jurisprudence Exam. Study materials for the exam are on this website. Applicants approved to take the exam are notified of the start and finish date of the exam. Applicants passing the Jurisprudence Exam receive a letter stating that the exam has been passed.
 
After the Optometry Board receives the Jurisprudence Examination score, all documents in the file must be checked, eligibility for license determined, entries must be made in the Texas Optometry Board's computer database, forms generated, the license itself prepared, and all documents for mailing assembled. If all these steps proceed smoothly, and the applicant has furnished all the required documents, licenses on average should be available in about three weeks from the end of the jurisprudence exam period. The Board cannot guarantee a date of license. Telephone calls asking when licenses will be ready tend to delay the process!
 
Successful applicants are sent a letter stating that the license is being prepared with instructions for submitting the required fee.
 
The initial license fee is received by the Board. A license is mailed to the applicant by U.S. Mail, Certified, Return Receipt Requested.
 
 

Jurisprudence Exam Information
Additional Information:  Provided the applicant has timely registered for the exam, an on-line exam administered by the NBEO may be taken at any time during the period beginning with the start date and ending two weeks later. All exams must be completed before the end date. Information regarding the form of the exam is on the NBEO Website.
 
 
Receiving License
Certified Mail:  Licenses are mailed in large cardboard envelopes by U.S. Mail, Certified, Return Receipt Requested. If you are not at your address during the day, the Post Office will leave you a notice that it will be holding mail at the Post Office for your signature. You cannot practice until you have received your license.
 
 
Important Information
 
Deadlines:  The Texas Optometry Board cannot extend deadlines.
 
Address:  Report all address changes immediately (by e-mail, fax or telephone)!
 
Expiration:  Regardless of when you receive your license, all licenses expire on December 31.
 
 
Applying for Optometry License
STEP 2  Select "Applying for Optometry License" below. Use this link to determine what type of application to submit. Answering the questions will direct you to the correct page of the website, where you may download the application form and instructions.
 
Study Materials:  Select "Have Applied, Need Study Materials" below. This will take you to the appropriate page for viewing or downloading the Texas Optometry Act and the Texas Optometry Board Rules.
 


Applying for Optometry License
     
Exam Dates

Have Applied, Need Study Materials
     
Fingerprint Information

     


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The Board and the State of Texas make no warranty as to the accuracy, completeness, reliability or fitness for a particular use of the information on this web site. The user assumes all liability and waives any and all claims or causes of action against the Board and the State of Texas for all uses of, and any reliance on, this information. This paragraph shall accompany all distributions of this information and is incorporated into this information for all purposes.
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Last Updated: 04/05/2016
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