Recognition of Certification and Use of Credentials

AACN certifications are not punctuated with periods. AACN credentials are registered service marks or trademarks of AACN Certification Corporation. 

The specific program of certification (e.g., CCRN, ACNPC-AG, CMC) and patient population (i.e., neonatal, pediatric, adult or adult-gerontology) will be noted on your wall certificate.

AACN Certification Corporation maintains a list of nurses it has certified and may report the list in its publications.

Use of Specialty Credentials

Candidates who meet all eligibility requirements and pass a specialty certification exam may use the corresponding credential after their licensing title.

  • An example of proper use is as follows: Chris Smith, RN, CCRN.

Use of Subspecialty Credentials

Candidates who meet all eligibility requirements and pass the CMC and/or CSC subspecialty certification exam may use the corresponding credential(s) after their licensing title, linked to a nationally accredited clinical nursing specialty certification. Candidates must inform AACN to which certification they wish to attach their subspecialty certification.

  • An example of proper use is as follows: Chris Smith, RN, CCRN-CMC.
  • If you were to obtain both subspecialty certifications you could attach the credentials to the same nursing specialty certification
    • For example: Chris Smith, CCRN-CMC-CSC.

Misrepresentation of Credentials

AACN Certification Corporation may deny or revoke certification for misrepresentation of certification status.

In the event of denial or revocation, notification may be sent to your employer and state board of nursing, where appropriate. You may be prohibited from reapplying for the exam for a period of up to three years.

For more details, refer to the Certification Exam Policy Handbook.

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