Initial CCRN-E Certification

Congratulations! You have taken your first step toward becoming a certified nurse. By demonstrating you have mastered certain skills, knowledge and abilities, you can distinguish yourself as a leader in care of acutely and criticlly ill adult patients.

The Certification Exam Policy Handbook will provide you with detailed testing and policy information. The CCRN-E Exam Handbook includes exam-specific information, including the CCRN-E application/honor statement and the CCRN-E test plan.

Once you have reviewed all available information and are ready to sit for the CCRN-E exam, we recommend you submit your application online. 

CCRN-E Exam Content

  • The CCRN-E exam is a 3-hour test consisting of 150 multiple-choice items.
    • Of the 150 items, 125  are scored and 25 are used to gather statistical data on item performance for future exams.
  • The CCRN-E exam focuses on the adult patient population.
  • The CCRN-E test plan includes detailed exam content, organized by body system, with a percentage breakdown for each topic area. 
    • The majority of the exam is age-specific for the adult patient population, while a portion of the exam covers content that may address any age across the life span. 

Exam Eligibility Requirements

  • Current unencumbered licensure as an RN or APRN in the U.S. is required.
    • An unencumbered license is not currently being subjected to formal discipline by any board of nursing and has no provisions or conditions that limit the nurse's practice in any way.
  • Candidates must meet one of the following clinical practice requirement options:
    • Option 1: Practice as an RN or APRN for 1,750 hours in the care of acutely and/or critically ill adult patients in a tele-ICU or in a combination of tele-ICU and direct bedside care during the previous two years, with 875 of those hours accrued in the most recent year preceding application.
    • Option 2: Practice as an RN or APRN for at least five years with a minimum of  2,000 hours in the care of acutely and/or critically ill adult patients in a tele-ICU or in a combination of tele-ICU and direct bedside care, with 144 of those hours accrued in the most recent year preceding application.
  • Nurses serving as a manager, educator (in-service or academic), APRN or preceptor may apply their hours spent supervising nurses or nursing students in the tele-ICU
  • Eligible clinical practice hours are those completed in a U.S.-based facility or in a facility determined to be comparable to the U.S. standard of acute/critical care tele-ICU nursing practice.
  • The name and address of a professional associate must be given for verification of clinical practice.
    • A professional associate is defined as either a clinical supervisor or colleague (RN or physician) with whom you work.

CCRN-E Exam Fees

CCRN-E Exam  
AACN Members $225
Nonmembers $330
CCRN-E Exam Retest or Renewal by Exam  
AACN Members $170
Nonmembers $275

Payable in U.S. Funds. Fees are subject to change without notice.