CCRN / CEN Exam Introduction

Becoming a CCRN or CEN certified nurse is a great achievement for a registered nurse. If you are able to preserve and attain both credentials you have set a high standard for your peers to follow. I created this website to help other nursing professionals gain these credentials and share my experiences.

It cost a fair amount of cash and large amount of time become dual certified as a CCRN and CEN. However, if you are willing to put in the time the reward can be great. CCRN and CEN certified nurses have more bargaining power when asking for a raise and have more highly sought after job skills. The real benefit is for the patients you serve. By setting the bar higher for yourself you have raised the quality of care provided by your facility.

CCRN stands for Certified Critical Care Nurse and CEN stands for Certification in Emergency Nursing. Both of these credentials come from separate governing bodies. CCRN’s are given their certification from the American Association of Critical Care Nurses ( CEN’s are authorized by the BCEN (

There are some resources for CCRN’s and CEN’s online; however, many do not help you with the exams. This site is committed to helping with this crucial step. I hope to outline on this website the necessary steps to becoming certified and what your certification really means.


The first step is to thoroughly review the Examination handbook offered by the governing bodies. These handbooks contain most of the information you need to know to gain certification.

One of the primary limitations for many nurses is the cost for these exams. Sitting for the CCRN exam cost $300 for non-ANCC members and $220 for members. Sitting for the CEN exam varies depending on your location and affiliations. You may be eligible for a discount if you are already a member of these governing bodies. Moreover, your employer may pick up the tab for the test. You have to ask them to pay. In addition, if the money comes out of your pocket it may be considered a tax deduction as “continuing education”, but check with your CPA about this.

CCRN Adult Exam Review