Everything You Need to Know About the Certified Nurse Educator Examination

Everything You Need to Know About the Certified Nurse Educator Examination



The National League for Nursing created the Certified Nurse Educator Examination as a specialty certification in 2005. It is a credentialing tool for nurses who are have masters and doctoral degree nurse educators. About 1600 currently possess this coveted credential, the rate of passers for the exam is 85%.

Here are the eligibility criteria for initial certification which should be met at the time of application:


For option A, all three of these criteria must be met:

Everything You Need to Know About the Certified Nurse Educator Examination

Everything You Need to Know About the Certified Nurse Educator Examination

• The person must be an active registered nurse as of the moment in the United States

• One should have either a master’s or doctoral nursing degree majoring or emphasizing education for nurses and 9 or more credit hours of graduate level education subjects

• One should also have a two year or more of full-time employment as an academic faculty in schools and this must be within the past five years for eligibility to take the exam.

For option B, these criteria should be met as well:
• Licensure (One should be an active nurse, registered and with a license eligible in the United States)
• Education (A master’s or if possible, doctorate in nursing with a major which emphasizes a role different from nursing education is necessary)
• Experience of 4 years or more employed full time (this is determined by the institution where the person works) in the academic faculty role within the past five years.

The CNE exam does not involve computer-adaptive test like the NCLEX rather, it is a standard multiple-choice assessment in electronic format which is entirely computer-based. The test consists of 150 multiple choice questions and has a time limit of 3 hours. The exam costs about $375 for NLN member and $475 for those who are nonmembers. These examination cost can be reimbursed by some colleges and universities.

As for the result of the exam, the computer displays individual test scores (whether the examinee passed or not) as soon as candidates are finished with the certification exam so there is no fretful waiting for results.

Months before the exam, one should be able to start refreshing and reviewing for the certification test. There are many primer and reviewer booklets and guides that can be purchased in bookstores or other shops in the internet. The National League or Nurses also recommended reviewing of the following materials:

• The test blue print which will help one to understand how each content area is weighted, and to review the percentage of questions that pertain to each area.
• The recommended reference list which gives the references specific to each of the content areas.
• The Sample questions on the candidate handbook

Reviewing for the Certified Nurse Educator Exam is essential and self-assessment examination booklets are invaluable tools in preparing for the CNE examination. Likewise, reviewing the helpful handbooks used during master’s coursework and other nursing textbooks should also be helpful in preparing for the exam.

There are many benefits of CNE certification for the nurse educator and most important among these is becoming highly qualified and competitive in very tight job market.

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Certified Nurse Educator (CNE) Recertification

Certified Nurse Educator (CNE) Re-certification



Being a CNE or a certified nurse educator means that you can coach and train student nurses into becoming skilled, highly qualified and full pledged nurses. In order for you to do this, you need to have a certification. Certification as we all know is a proof of accreditation of expertise. Among academic nurse educators, it shows that nurse educators are highly qualified to train future nurses to give quality health care to the community as a whole. By having being credited as a Certified Nurse Educator (CNE) not only do you become a role model and leader but also as an exemplary mentor as well.

If you were already accredited as a Certified Nurse Educator by the National League of Nurses (NLN), then you should keep in mind that the accreditation expires and must be renewed after 5 years. In order for you to reapply for the certification, you may select one of two choices below:


The first option requires you to have participated in professional enhancement programs. For one to be recertified, he or she must meet all the entitlement requirements for renewal of the CNE certification.

You must present a professional self assessment and documented proof of your participation in continuous quality enhancement programs and activities which are significant to the academic nurse educator function.

The second option for recertification is to be able to comply with all the eligibility prerequisites for CNE certification renewal. A CNE examination must also be successfully completed before your CNE certification expires. You need to pass the exam in order to be recertified.

Do keep in mind that during the 5 year life span of your certification, you must participate and attend in at least 50 continuous quality enhancement programs and activities. Remember that the activities should be well documented for proof. The first option is a rather tedious and complicated method since you are required to collect certificates and wait for further verification of the documents. The second option seems a bit easier, since all you have to do is retake and pass the Certified Nurse Educators examination.

If you plan to choose the first option then please remember that proper activities include attending and participating in nursing educator enhancement seminars and conferences, using innovative and new techniques in teaching – learning strategies in the classroom and clinical settings, facilitating an online educational chat session conferences with students, doing research on new strategies of education, presenting articles for publication, formulating an effective evaluation tool, coaching new faculty members and the likes.

Remember that the goal of the Academic Nurse Educator Certification Program is to recognize the excellence of the academic nurse educator in advanced specialty. You are distinguished from others as an educator of advanced roles and practice within the scope of the nursing profession, strengthen and uplift the nursing standards, reinforce the utilization of core competencies of nurse educators practice, contribute to other nurses’ professional growth and development and a lot more. If you are interested in renewing your certification as a competent nurse educator, then it is advised that you waste no time.