CPNP-AC Exam Eligibility

License & education requirements
Special timelines for the CPNP-AC exam continue to be in effect. Candidates will be provided updated eligibility notification as it becomes available. Thank you for your understanding and patience.  Please contact PNCB at exam@pncb.org with any questions. Press Release: PNCB Announces CPNP-AC Exam Action. See updates and FAQs herePNCB Statement of Information

CPNP-AC Exam Eligibility

Learn about eligibility requirements and any supporting documents before you apply. 

Requirement Details

1. Licensure

Current, active, unencumbered RN license issued by a US state, US territory, or Canada and meet educational requirement below

2. Education

Graduation from an accredited college or university that offers a ACEN or CCNE accredited nursing master's or doctoral degree with a concentration in pediatric acute care as a nurse practitioner or formal dual primary/acute care program  


Graduation from a post master's pediatric acute care nurse practitioner certificate program from an accredited college or university

Education Notes

The didactic and clinical education listed below must be completed within the educational program(s) which provides the final transcript used to meet PNCB’s certification exam eligibility requirements.

  • A minimum of 500 (PNCB strongly recommends 600) supervised direct care clinical practice hours in acute care pediatrics. For more information on what is considered acute care, please see NONPF's Statement on Acute Care and Primary Care Certified Nurse Practitioner Practice (2012). Direct care clinical hours are hours in which hands on pediatric acute care is provided to individuals and families. These hours do not include skill lab hours, physical assessment practice sessions, or a community project if it does not include provision of direct patient care. 
  • And completion of three separate comprehensive graduate-level courses in: 
    • Advanced physiology/pathophysiology, including general principles or concepts across the lifespan.
    • Advanced health assessment, which includes assessment of all human systems, advanced assessment techniques, concepts and approaches.
    • Advanced pharmacology, which includes pharmacodynamics, pharmacokinetics and pharmacotherapeutics for all broad categories of agents.

Faces of Certification

PNCB-certified nursing professionals work in a variety of roles and settings throughout the US and beyond. Share your photo today!

Clayton Collins, CPN Shriners Hospitals for Children - Galveston Galveston, TX
Leticia Cole, CPNP-PC, CPN Sniffles & Giggles Waxahachie, TX
Renee Flippo, CPNP-PC Louise Herrington School of Nursing | Baylor University Dallas, TX
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