New Option for Initial Exam Eligibility

Over the past several years AACN has fielded many inquiries from nurses who have worked in positions caring for acutely and/or critically ill patients over the span of several years, but for various reasons did not meet existing certification exam eligibility requirements.

As AACN Certification Corporation considered options to allow these nurses to become certified that would support our mission of public protection, we determined it was important to consider longevity as well as current experience for exam eligibility.

Consequently, the AACN Certification Corporation Board of Directors approved an additional option for nurses to meet the eligibility requirements to sit for the CCRN, CCRN-E, PCCN, CMC and CSC certification exams.  

Existing exam eligibility requirements (Option 1) for these certifications remain unchanged. Option 2 will be available July 1, 2013.

  • Option 1: Practice as an RN or APRN for 1,750 hours during the previous two (2) 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 (5) years with a minimum of 2,000 hours, with 144 of those hours accrued in the most recent year preceding application.

Details about the eligibility options, including specific patient populations, can be found on the pages linked below.

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