Today I took (and passed!) the AANP Emergency board certification exam. I promised myself that I'd get on here and create a post, since there seemed to be a lack of information out there when I was preparing, which makes sense given that this is a newer exam.
Background: I'm an FNP. Next month will mark 2 years that I've worked in the ED in a community hospital. I work primarily fast track, though I do pick up occasional "Main ED" shifts when staffing allows. While it is "fast track", it is not unusual for triage to miss the mark. We regularly have surgery, med/surg, and ICU admissions, and it is not unusual to arrange transfers to different facilities for patients who require a higher level of care. Having said all of this, I am not the provider who is going to be stabilizing a trauma or running a code. Most of my patients are stable, even if they do turn out to actually be sick. I also do some urgent care work.
Preparation: I purchased the Barkley CDs for review. At this time, the Fitzgerald course is not yet available for home review; I'd have preferred to use Fitzgerald if it were an option. I was not impressed with the Barkley course. I felt that the speakers were not engaging, and was disappointed in the quality of some of the material set forth. It was painful to make it through all of the CDs and I had difficulty concentrating on them. I would not recommend Barkley.
Appx 2 weeks before my test date I purchased the RoshReview test bank, composed of appx 1500 questions. I completed all of the questions and only got 55% of them correct. I definitely learned things from them, but it is clear that the question bank was recycled questions that were originally used for Emergency Physician test prep. For example, questions would start, "You are the Emergency Physician caring for a patient who presents with..." The good news is that RoshReview does offer a full refund if you don't pass your exam. I'd say I got more out of those practice questions than I did the Barkley course, but I do wish it was a little more consistent with what we would see on the ENP exam.
Test: I found the AANP ENP examination to be very fair, just as I did their FNP examination. It was helpful to have real life experience behind me which gave me confidence with my answers, which I was missing when I took the FNP exam. If you're banking on clinical ED experience as your sole preparation for the ENP exam- it is probably sufficient. The test was absolutely in line with what I see on a typical day in fast track, inclusive of those cases that require work-ups, transfers, and admissions. There were no tricks, and they weren't expecting me to know how to independently manage complex traumas or cases that I'd ask an attending for help with in real life.