Extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO) therapy continues to increase in use for critically ill patients with severe respiratory or cardiac failure. This intricate form of life support requires specialized training and expertise to implement it safely and effectively. Earning AACN’s ECMO Micro-Credential for critical care nurses validates your specialty knowledge in caring for patients receiving ECMO therapy.

Who Is It For?

This micro-credential supports the clinical practice of critical care nurses and APRNs who are directly involved in caring for patients receiving ECMO therapy. Since ECMO is performed in a variety of emergency scenarios, nurses pursuing this micro-credential are not limited to any particular unit or setting. The only eligibility requirement is that applicants must hold a current, unencumbered U.S. healthcare professional license.

Earning Your ECMO Micro-Credential

Applicants earn their ECMO Micro-Credential by successfully completing an exam that validates their knowledge of nursing care delivery for patients receiving ECMO therapy. The exam:

  • Includes items developed using validated, evidence-based sources on current ECMO practice (see bibliography in the ECMO Micro-Credential Exam Test Plan)
  • Consists of 38 items randomly selected from a bank of questions
  • Requires 28 correct items for a passing score
  • Has a 90-minute time limit
  • Offers 2 CERPs (Category A) upon passing the exam

We encourage you to refer to the ECMO Micro-Credential Exam Test Plan for a comprehensive content overview and references used to develop the exam.

Taking the Exam

The process of applying for and taking the ECMO Micro-Credential exam is streamlined to make it as easy as possible for nurses pursuing this professional achievement.

  • 1No application is necessary; purchase the exam from this webpage.

  • 2Detailed instructions are sent via email after completing your transaction.

  • 3Take the exam online at your convenience, anytime and anywhere.

  • 4Results are shared immediately upon completion of the exam.

  • 5Print your certificate of achievement from your AACN customer dashboard.

  • 6Send a verification letter to your employer through our online verification system.

AACN Members




Exam Preparation Resources

To help you prepare for your ECMO Micro-Credential exam, AACN offers several useful resources.

ECMO Exam Test Plan

This comprehensive outline details content covered in the exam and references used for validation.

The ECMO Course

An online course for clinicians who want to develop their understanding of the fundamental principles of ECMO support.

ECMO Clinical Resources

This collection of AACN resources offers easy access to ECMO-related educational content.

Customer Support

Have questions or need help? Contact AACN Customer Care.