Frequently Asked Questions about Certification and Related Activities

Frequently Asked Questions

LSLS Certification: Frequently Asked Questions

10 Benefits of Certification

General Certification Information

How do I meet the eligibility requirements to take the LSLS certification examination?

All professionals who are just beginning the process towards certification as a LSLS Certified Auditory-Verbal Therapist® (LSLS Cert. AVT) or LSLS Certified Auditory-Verbal Educator® (LSLS Cert. AVEd) must first apply for enrollment in the LSL Registry before engaging in any certification-related activities. The Academy encouraged anyone who is already in the process of seeking certification to be enrolled in the Registry by January 31, 2022, but is taking enrollees at any time. Enrollment in the Registry allows those professionals to receive quick updates about certification and related activities. Once approved for enrollment in the Registry, a professional is eligible to take the certification exam. In other words, a professional must be enrolled in order to take the exam and can take the exam at any time during their certification process. Current requirements for eligibility to take the Certification Examination can be found in the AG Bell Academy Certification Handbook.

Prior to being accepted as a candidate to sit for the certification exam, professionals must have gone through a 3 to 5-year certification period at which time they complete all requirements of the certification process, with the exception of taking the exam. Completion and passing of the LSLS certification exam is the last step of the certification process. Once the exam is completed and passed, that candidate is able to use the LSLS credential for which they applied (LSLS Cert. AVT or LSLS Cert. AVEd).

How should candidates prepare for the examination?

Know that all nine Domains of Knowledge for LSLS Certification are included on the certification exam. Domains (and subdomains) of Knowledge for LSLS Certification include:

  1. Hearing and Hearing Technology (14.3% of exam)
    1. a. Hearing Science
    2. b. Hearing Assessment
    3. c. Hearing Technology
  2. Auditory Functioning (18.9% of exam)
  3. Spoken Language Communication (14.9% of exam)
    1. a. Speech Development
    2. b. Receptive and Expressive Language
  4. Child Development (8.6% of exam)
  5. Parent Guidance/Coaching, Education, and Support (13.1% of exam)
  6. Strategies for Listening and Spoken Language Development (14.9% of exam)
  7. History, Philosophy, and Professional Issues (2.9% of exam)
  8. Education (6.2% of exam)
  9. Emergent Literacy (6.2% of exam)


Use the LSL Specialist Exam Blueprint to view the Knowledge and Skills Statements that are included in the nine Domains of Knowledge for Listening and Spoken Language Certification. The exam does not include content from every knowledge and skills statement. However, the Blueprint reflects the comprehensive knowledge and skills needed by a Listening and Spoken Language Specialist (Cert AVT and Cert AVEd) as confirmed through as indicated through a practice analysis survey of certified Listening and Spoken Language professionals.

View the AG Bell Academy Suggested References for LSLS Certification Examination Preparation.  The AG Bell Academy for Listening and Spoken Language recognizes that there is an extensive body of excellent resources now available to Listening and Spoken Language Specialists. The suggested references list includes general overview sources for professionals who are preparing to take the examination. This list may be updated as new editions or comparative sources become available. Note: The listing of these references is intended for use as study aids only. The Academy does not intend for this list to be exhaustive or to imply endorsement of these specific references, nor are all test items taken from these sources.

Make the most of working with your certified LSLS mentor or mentors by receiving  feedback via the Attachment F-1 for each of your twenty required one-hour mentored sessions. The twenty sessions should be equally spread across your certification period with a minimum of 3 mentored and documented (F-1) sessions per year. Apply that feedback by being intentional about developing your LSL practice knowledge and skills across your certification period.

Consider taking the AG Bell Academy Practice Examination. The Practice Examination is designed to mirror the LSLS certification exam in style and question format as well as LSLS domain content.  The test is helpful in providing the test taker familiarity with the exam format, but should not be viewed as an indicator as an indicator of a candidate’s overall preparedness for the real LSLS exam. Contact the AG Bell Academy to access the Practice Examination.

hat do candidates need to know about the exam itself?

The exam contains 200 questions. Candidates have four hours to take the exam. 175 specific questions are scored to calculate the final exam score. The 25 remaining questions are beta/test questions that are intermittently listed across the exam. Beta questions are undifferentiated from regular questions, therefore candidates should plan to respond to all 200 questions. Beta questions responses do not count towards the final exam score.

The following suggestions are designed to help applicants prepare for the LSLS examination.

  1. Each question on the test is in a four-option, multiple-choice format with one correct answer.
  2. Read each question carefully.
  3. The LSLS examination is timed. You will have four hours to complete the exam. If you are not sure of an answer, do not spend a great deal of time on it. It may be better to select the best answer or make a note of the question and come back to it later.
  4. Find the response that best answers the question; there are no “trick questions” on the exam.
  5. Answer every question. If you have time to check your answers, you will be able to so on the online exam. The answers you select before you submit your test determine your final score. If you are unsure of an answer, it may be better to guess. You will not receive credit for any question left blank or marked with more than one answer.
  6. Qualifying words, such as FIRST, MOST, LEAST and BEST are often critical in determining the correct answer.

How is a passing score determined?

A passing score is determined on the number of items answered correctly on the 175 multiple choice regular test questions on the exam. There is not a certain minimum weighted percentage that a candidate must achieve on each domain. In fact, a candidate may not perform well on a domain and still pass the overall exam because they have passed enough of the test’s 175 regular questions for a passing score. The passing score of each exam is in no way affected by the number of individuals who have taken the exam.

A “cut score” for passing the exam was established by having a group of subject matter experts in listening and spoken language examine a test form and rated the items according to how likely a candidate would be to answer the item correctly. The cut score was derived by aggregating those probabilities to establish an estimated expected score on the exam for a candidate who is qualified enough to pass.

Each candidate’s performance is evaluated only in the context of the cut (passing) score, and is not compared to any other candidate’s performance.

If I request re-scoring, would that allow me to see which questions I got right/wrong?

No. The examination questions are confidential, and will not be included on any report to examinees.

If I don’t pass the exam, when may I take it again?

In order to re-take the examination, you must complete the service form requesting to retake the exam and submit the appropriate fee using this form. After your initial acceptance to sit for the LSLS examination, you may take the test up to three (3) times before you must resubmit an application. There is a minimum 3 month (90 day) waiting period in between each exam attempt. Each retest request should be made and requires a US$250 retest fee for AG Bell members, and a US$350 fee for nonmembers. We strongly encourage attempting the exam again, as many examinees are successful after their first attempt, and after reviewing and preparing based on the performance result reports from Kryterion. Examinees who do not pass the exam receive performance percentages for each domain. This information is provided for the purpose of providing feedback to the examinee as they prepare to re-take the exam. Requests to take the exam must be submitted to at least fourteen (14) days prior to your planned examination date.

What is the Academy’s policy regarding exam deferrals?

If the candidate cannot take exam during the quarter for which they have applied, they may request to be allowed to sit for their initial exam administration up to one year from the acceptance date. Deferrals require a US$50 processing fee. Again, professionals who have been accepted to sit for the exam may defer taking the examination for only one year from their acceptance date. Your request to take the exam must be received in writing (email or mail) at least fourteen (14) days prior to your planned examination date.

Should professionals seeking certification defer, the Academy will hold the application fee until the following year. If an exam professional seeking certification does not take the exam within the 12-month deferment period, they will forfeit their application fee. Professionals seeking certification who do not sit for the exam after the 12-month deferment period and wish to take the exam at a later date must submit a new application, including all fees and documentation required at the time of resubmission.

What is the Academy’s policy regarding exam cancellations?

The online examination facility allows the candidate to cancel and reschedule their testing session 72 hours or more prior to the scheduled exam date without financial penalty. Should the candidate cancel their scheduled exam date and/or time less than 72 hours prior to the scheduled time, a fee of approximately U.S. $100 (or the current test proctor fee) will be charged. The candidate will not be able to move forward with a rescheduled time until that fee is paid.