Which Certification Exam should I take?

  1. I want to take a certification exam to progress up my clinical ladder. I've been a float nurse for the majority of my nursing career and know a good deal about most areas of nursing (besides Psych and OR). I've had lots of med/surg experience, lots of ER experience, lots of critical care experience, PCU experience, and Pediatrics experience.

    I don't really have a favorite area either. Which would you take?
  2. Visit LilyBlue profile page

    About LilyBlue

    Joined: Feb '09; Posts: 292; Likes: 711
    staff nurse
    Specialty: 10 year(s) of experience


  3. by   caliotter3
    If you truly have no preference, maybe you could attempt to determine which might be more helpful in job advancement. Go to the jobs website of your facility as well as that of the two or three nearest competing facilities and see how many listings for the different departments/specialties. That is, how many open positions are there where a certification could help you land a job, or if already at the facility, provide a means of advancement. You might want to choose the specialty where there appears to be the greater need. Are you sure that you don't have a preference?
  4. by   LilyBlue
    Nope. I like/dislike parts of all of them. I think I'm leaning towards CCRN just to challenge myself, but I don't really have ICU preference. I'm currently working on PCU because I enjoy the particular nurses I work with, and they could accomodate the schedule most beneficial to my childcare situation. I have a lot of emergency experience including pre-hospital, but I'm not interested in working in my local ER for various reasons.

    I plan to leave bedside nursing in a couple years when I get my master's degree.
  5. by   ghillbert
    CCRN is a great overall certification. I think it would help in any specialty.
  6. by   GilaRRT
    You need to have a healthy number of documented hours of recent experience to take the CCRN.
  7. by   LilyBlue
    Like what? I work fulltime. I've worked at least 24 hours a week for my entire nursing career of 10 years, the majority being ICU, PCU and ER.
  8. by   GilaRRT
    1750 hours in the last two years working critical care. 875 in the past year. In addition, all 1750 hours must be in the same patient population. Adult, for example. You could have it covered; however, be aware of the hourly requirements. If you are serious about taking the CCRN, you should visit the website. The AACN is your contact for taking this exam. A quick Google search should find the proper website.