Registered Professional Land Surveyor (RPLS)

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Application Process Exam

If you are interested in land surveying, to become a Registered Professional Land Surveying (RPLS) in Texas please submit all documents in a hard copy format with original signatures (by mail or hand delivered). Each document has instructions on how to complete it. Applications must be complete by January 15th to be considered for the April examination and by July 15th to be considered for the October examination.

Only after all documents required are completed and submitted to the Board can an applicant be reviewed for approval. Once a decision has been reached by the Board in regard to an application, the applicant will be emailed the results of the review. If the application is rejected, the applicant will be told what they must supply to the Board in order for their application to become approved. Incomplete applications, miscellaneous application materials that have been sent to the Board and rejected applications will be held for a period of one year at the Board office before being discarded. Please contact licensing at the Board office if you should need any assistance.

There are two different ways to qualify to take the exam to become an RPLS:

  1. Hold a surveying degree. The Act does allow associates and bachelor degrees with acceptable coursework to qualify for registration.
  2. Completion of 32 hours of Board-approved course work.

Application Process

The following documents/items are required to take the RPLS Exam:

1. RPLS Application

All questions must be answered. A Failure to complete any portion of the application form will disqualify your application for the Board review.  This application must be accompanied by a check or money order (unless application is a military service member – see section 2).

Application Form

2. Application Payment

The application fee of $125.00 must be submitted with the application.  This payment must be in the form of a personal check, cashier’s check or money order. No cash is accepted.

3. Compliance Verification Forms

There are five parts which must total 4,000 hours minimum.  All parts must be submitted.

Research (minimum of 3 months) Legal Principles/Boundary Reconciliations and Deed Sketches (minimum of 3 months) Computations/Traverse Accuracy Analysis (minimum of 3 months) Documentation/Descriptions/Monumentation/Preparing Final Surveys (minimum of 3 months) Field Experience (only one (1) year maximum will be accepted)

4. Transcripts

The applicant must submit certified college transcripts and any certificates of completion from other seminars/course taken.  Only transcripts in sealed envelopes from the collegiate institution will be accepted as ‘certified’.

5. Approved Course Checklist

This form must be accompanied by course descriptions for each course from your collegiate catalog; not required if applying under section 1071.253 (1) All courses must be conferred by an official transcript.  If your education experience has not changed since applying for the SIT, you are not required to resubmit your transcripts or the Approved Course Checklist.  You are also not required to submit the Approved Course Checklist if you have a bachelor or associates degree in Land Surveying.

Checklist Document

6. Rural Sample Survey (metes and bounds) / Metes and Bounds Description / Research Document Listing

Along with the sample surveys, the applicant must submit a listing of all research documentation used to construct the surveys (Do Not Send the Documents Themselves) and separate metes and bounds description (for rural survey).

7. Urban Sample Survey (lot and block) / Research Document Listing

The applicant must submit two (2) sample boundary survey reports (sketch, map, or plat) completed under RPLS supervision. Submission must be paper, not to exceed 11” X 17”, and digital (CD, USB, or email – licensing@pels.texas.gov ; PDF only).  One report must be Urban (lot and block), and one report must be Rural (metes and bounds).  These surveys must meet the minimum standards set by the Board. 

Please use the Application Checklist: Sample Surveys to help you in meeting the minimum standards.

Review Checklist: RPLS Application Sample Survey Plats and Descriptions

Exam

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Surveying Exams Info