Lifeguard Certification

2023 Certification Dates!

2023 Lifeguard Course Offerings pending.

See specific times and PRE-TEST times by clicking on Lifeguard image above.

Register for a class by clicking image above.

contact Dr. Reed at FMI

Click image above to register for American Red Cross Lifeguard Certification Courses through HSU.

Lifeguard Training Frequently Asked Questions

Please Read Before Registering

How do I pay?

Before being allowed in the pool for the Pre-test, students must pay the $25 NON-REFUNDABLE registration fee. (same fee whether you are re-certifying or are a new candidate)

Once a student passes the Pre-test, they will need to pay the $200 Course fee.  **Re-certification students course fee is $100 if you bring your own full size breathing mask, or $110 if you need a replacement mask).

Payment can be made in person to Abilene Hall 104, the Fletcher Fitness Center Front Desk OR through mail at HSU c/o Dr. Reed, Box 16180 Abilene, TX 79698.  (checks made out to HSU, or cash are the only forms of payment accepted)

What if I just want to certify as a Shallow Water Attendant?

All classes are open to Shallow Water Attendant’s as well as Lifeguard Candidates.  During times of deep water activities, shallow water attendant candidates will refrain from active participation.

What if I just need to re-certify?

All classes are open to Re-certification candidates.  The instructor and the student will work together to schedule specific times/days to meet within the selected course to conduct skill sessions.  We believe NEW Candidates can learn valuable information by working with re-certification candidates so collaboration is encouraged.

Why can we not just come on Saturday and Sunday?

We meet a few days extra instead of all day Saturday and Sunday to give our Instructors as well as our students time to attend their individual Religious opportunities.  Class may not need to meet Sunday at all – it depends on how students are progressing in their skills as well as how many students are in a course. Due to the potential for dangerous weather conditions we reserve Sundays for class always!

How does the online content work?

Upon registration, students will be emailed meeting information concerning the Pre-test. Following the successful completion of the pre-test a link to the online portion of the course will be shared with lifeguard candidates. Students will be directed to create an account using their own email address so that their progress through the online content can be saved and verified. The online content is estimated to take seven hours to complete. Students must complete ALL online content as well as worksheets, and come to the first in-person session prepared to show proof of completion via one of the following methods:

  • Print or take a screen shot of your online course completion record available at the conclusion of the eLearning course and bring it to the first in-person skill session. It will read “Proceed to Skill Session”.
  • Be prepared to login to the eLearning course on the first in-person skill session to display the completion status that appears above the “Launch Course” button.

Students unable to show proof of the completion of the online content will not be allowed to participate in the course and will not receive a refund. The online portion of the course should be completed well ahead of time (at least 48 hours) of the first in-person session.

How can I best prepare for the course?

All participants are assigned to read all chapters of the American Red Cross Lifeguard Manual before attending the first part of the session. Upon successful completion of the pre-test, candidates will be sent their digital textbook as well as a link to complete required worksheets and the digital link for online training.

What if I cannot attend one class time? Can I make it up?

Unfortunately no, the time commitment & staff resources to the entire course would be jeopardized to accommodate the needs of one. However, students may reschedule ahead of time to another open session.

What is your rescheduling policy?

Students can only be transferred into a session that has available openings. We do ask for as much advanced notice as possible (48 hours minimum) so that we can adjust accordingly.

What if I don’t pass the prerequisite? Can I still attend the course?

No, inability to pass the prerequisites set by the American Red Cross would prove a student’s progress in the course to be difficult and possibly dangerous to the student and others. Students are guaranteed only one chance to complete each component of the prerequisite skills evaluated on their first day of class. Students are guaranteed only one chance to complete each component of the perquisite skills evaluation on their first day of class.  Students are strongly encouraged to practice the prerequisite skills ahead of time and come to the first day of class confident in their ability to successfully complete the evaluation.

What do I need to bring to class?

Students need to bring a swimsuit, dry clothes to change into after in-water sessions, goggles (only to be used during the 300-yard swim of the perquisite skills evaluation and for viewing underwater skill demonstrations), contacts case (if students require contacts), writing utensil, snack lunch or money for lunch and additional snacks to eat throughout the day. We do have vending machines on the premises. Snacks are highly encouraged for our long days, and a sweatshirt is recommended as the classroom is air conditioned and much cooler than the pool deck, and towels,  Students may wish to bring an additional swimsuit and towel to avoid having to change back into a wet swimsuit after breaks between in-water sessions each day.

Where do I park and where does the class meet?

Parking is available free of charge to park anywhere on campus. These lots may have certain permits; however, the parking policy is not valid for guest.

The classes will meet their instructor at the outdoor pool under the covered area early to ensure they don’t arrive late and miss information critical to successful course completion.

Please keep in mind that all class ending times may vary significantly due to the individual needs of each class especially regarding testing and potential re-testing on the last day of each session.

Do I need to arrive in my swimsuit and what kind of swimsuit can I wear?

Students should arrive the 1st night with their swimsuit on underneath their clothes. For males, a basic suit or board shorts is acceptable. For females, a one-piece swim suit or a sport two-piece is acceptable. In general, please wear a swimsuit that allows good range of motion and will stay secure and keep you covered during physical activity throughout the course.

How do I pass the course?

To successfully complete the Lifeguard Blended Learning course, the participant must:

  • Attend the entire course and participate in all class sessions.
  • Actively participate in all course activities, including assuming various roles during scenarios.
  • Demonstrate competency in all required skills.
  • Pass the final skills scenarios.
  • Complete all eLearning content, including the eLearning written exam (CPR/AED for professional Rescuers and First Aid).
  • Successfully pass final written exams with a minimum grade of 80 percent. If a participant fails to reach the maximum 80 percent on the final written exam, a retest is allowed using the other version of the exam, provided that the learner has passed the final skills assessment.

There are no refunds for students who fail the course.

If a student has a learning disability, please let us know prior to the course so that we can discuss alternative testing potions.

Are there any other evaluations in the course?

Yes, we are always observing each student’s discipline. This is an intense training course with long hours and we expect all students (regardless of age) to be prepared for that. Lack of discipline or respect of the instructors and fellow classmates could result in dismissal from the course. We want students to understand the important responsibility lifeguards have as first responders. Lifeguards are to ensure patron safety and protect lives. Please keep phones put away.

Will I be certified upon completion of the course? 

Yes, upon successful completion of the course, students are certified lifeguards. Certificates will be distributed within 14 business days of completion. Students will receive their certificates via the email address they provide on the day one of their class. If the certificate is not received within the above time frame, students are encouraged to contact the program supervisor to verify their email was input correctly.

What certifications will I receive? 

American Red Cross Lifeguard/First Aid/CPR/AED- Valid for 2 years. Students will also receive their own mask.

Do you provide job placement? 

No, we do not provide job placement, however many facilities provide us with hiring information to make available to students at the end of training classes. Those job postings will be available upon request.

How do I register?

Just click on the registration form link on our website (picture of lifeguard at top of page), fill out and submit it. We will be in contact with you regarding course links with the American Red Cross.

Call Corrie Reed 325-670-1470 or Email

A student’s spot is reserved in the class once we have received both form and payment of $25 (non-refundable) pre-test fee. Classes fill up very fast the closer we get to summer, so be sure to plan your registration accordingly.

If you have further questions, please don’t hesitate to ask. We look forward to being an important part of your lifeguarding experience!