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FAQs: Contact Hours (CNE Credit)


How To Award Contact Hours (CNE Credit)
There are three ways to award ANCC contact hours (continuing nursing education (CNE) credit) for successful completion of continuing nursing education activities. An organization can:

  • become an Accredited Provider of continuing nursing education,
  • become an Approved Provider through a constituent and state nursing association, or
  • seek and receive Individual Activity Approval for an educational activity from an ANCC Accredited Approver.

Note: A commercial interest organization is not eligible to award CNE credit. To determine if your organization holds a commercial interest download Evaluation of an Organization as a Commercial Interest [pdf]

Accredited Provider
Organizations may apply to become an Accredited Provider of continuing nursing education. This organizational credential enables an organization to plan and present as many educational activities as it chooses throughout the period of accreditation, domestically and internationally.

An Accredited Provider must have a currently licensed registered nurse who holds a graduate degree, and either the graduate degree or baccalaureate degree must be in nursing. Initial applicants may receive accreditation for up to two years, and re-accrediting applicants may receive accreditation for up to four years. View fee schedule. Complete application and 2015 accreditation criteria are available our manuals. Downloadable here:
ANCC Primary Accreditation Provider Application Manual

ANCC Primary Accreditation Approver Application Manual

Find ANCC Accredited Providers

Approved Provider
Organizations may apply to become an Approved Provider through a constituent or state nurses association (C/SNA) that is an ANCC Accredited Approver. This organizational credential enables an organization to plan and present as many educational activities as it chooses throughout the period of approval. An Approved Provider is required to have a currently licensed registered nurse who holds a baccalaureate or higher degree in nursing.

An Approved Provider must target at least 50% of its educational activities within its local geographic region (see Boundary Rule for Approved Providers). Each C/SNA has its own application process and fee schedule. An approval period is no longer than 3 years.s

Find ANCC Accredited Approvers
Organizations listed as state nurses associations may approve providers.

Individual Activity Approval
Organizations may submit individual activities to an ANCC Accredited Approver to have a specific educational activity approved for two years. Each Accredited Approver sets fees and review time. Some Accredited Approvers offer an expedited review process for a higher fee. 

Each educational activity must include a qualified nurse (Nurse Planner) in planning, implementing, and evaluating the educational activity. The qualified nurse must hold a current, valid nursing license as an RN and a baccalaureate degree or higher in nursing.

Find ANCC Accredited Approvers
Any organization listed as an ANCC Accredited Approver can approve an individual activity.


How to Find Organizations that Award CNE?
An organization accredited or approved to award ANCC continuing education credit must use the appropriate ANCC accreditation statement on its materials for learners. To determine if an organization is awarding ANCC continuing education credit:

Contact the provider of the educational activity and ask if the provider is awarding ANCC contact hours.

Look for an ANCC Accreditation statement, such as:

  • Company ABC is accredited as a provider of continuing nursing education by the American Nurses Credentialing Center's Commission on Accreditation.
  • Company ABC is an approved provider of continuing nursing education by (name of Accredited Approver) an accredited approver by the American Nurses Credentialing Center's Commission on Accreditation.
  • This activity has been submitted to the (name of Accredited Approver) for approval to award contact hours. The (name of Accredited Approver) is accredited an approver of continuing nursing education by the American Nurses Credentialing Center's Commission on Accreditation.
  • This continuing nursing education activity was approved by (name of Accredited Approver), an accredited approver by the American Nurses Credentialing Center's Commission on Accreditation.

Find an ANCC Accredited Organization


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