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General Requirements for Initial Certification

You must meet all the eligibility requirements for the certification exam you are seeking to take. If you do not meet all the eligibility requirements when you apply, you will not be permitted to take a certification examination. The specific eligibility requirements for your certification are available at www.nursecredentialing.org/certification.aspx#specialty.

For exams that require academic transcripts for eligibility: transcripts must be original documents, in sealed envelopes directly from the university registrar's office, and must include the degree-awarded date (degree-conferral date). Transcripts may be sent electronically directly from the university registrar's office to certification@ana.org.

All practice requirements must have been met while holding an active registered nurse license in a U.S. state or territory or the professional, legally recognized equivalent in another country. Any hours of practice as a licensed practical nurse OR a licensed vocational nurse OR working outside of the nursing field do not qualify as part of the practice hour requirement. Practice hours may be either part of your employment or voluntary.

All fees must be paid at the time your application is submitted to ANCC. Applications received with insufficient funds delay the review of your application for eligibility and delay your ability to schedule and take a certification examination.

Applications received with missing documentation (including signatures) delay the review of your application for eligibility and delay your ability to schedule and take a certification examination.