Which CNS certification?

Specialties CNS

Published

Which certifying body did you choose for your CNS certification? ANCC and their ACNS-BC, AGCNS-BC, etc or AACN with their CCNS or the new ACCNS(-AG,P,N)? Are there any other organizations that currently certify CNS's? What was your reason for choosing the certifying body? I understand that some of this will be dictated by your school's program, but I thought some of this difference in preperation was going away as programs adapt the consensus model. Thoughts?

Trauma Columnist

traumaRUs, MSN, APRN

97 Articles; 21,237 Posts

Specializes in Nephrology, Cardiology, ER, ICU.

To be honest, when I tested, the only option was ANCC so I did the adult health CNS and peds CNS thru them.

Hopefully someone else will come along that used a different certifying body.

Whispera, MSN, RN

3,458 Posts

Specializes in psych, addictions, hospice, education.

I don't know what all those initials stand for, but I got my psych CNS certification through ANCC because that was the only one I knew existed. My school didn't know much about what psych CNSs could or should do after they graduated, so they were no help.

Specializes in Nursing Admin & Advanced Practice.

Thank you both TraumaRUs & Whispera for your insight. I agree all the acronyms are confusing if you don't know what they are which I often feel creates confusion for the public and healthcare providers alike in understanding who we are, what skill set we have, who we can see, etc.

AACN is the American Association of Critical Care Nurses. They have updated their certification to be consensus model compliant (ACCNS â€" Certification for Adult-Gerontology, Pediatric and Neonatal Clinical Nurse Specialists) which consists of 3 certification options for CNS's: ACCNS-AG, ACCNS-P, & ACCNS-N (Acute Care CNS-Adult Geriatric...). Their website specifies that even though they are a critical care organization their new CNS cert covers the Wellness to Acute Care spectrum so it should be applicable to any new CNS grad. I'm thinking the two of you have answered my question; until recently ANCC was the only certifying body. Thanks.

Trauma Columnist

traumaRUs, MSN, APRN

97 Articles; 21,237 Posts

Specializes in Nephrology, Cardiology, ER, ICU.

Thanks for that info. You are right. When I looked at the website they started offering CNS certs in 2012. Thanks

SHGR, MSN, RN, CNS

2 Articles; 1,406 Posts

Specializes in nursing education.

Thanks for this info! I will definitely look into the AACN adult-gero certification because the "wellness through acute care" is consistent with the LACE model and going forward this is important. It's also good to know that there will continue to be peds CNS's- I thought that specialty was being retired (because the ANCC is retiring that exam/certification).

Trauma Columnist

traumaRUs, MSN, APRN

97 Articles; 21,237 Posts

Specializes in Nephrology, Cardiology, ER, ICU.

ANCC is definitely retiring it effective dec 2015

Ahhphoey

370 Posts

Specializes in ICU, M/S,Nurse Supervisor, CNS.

I recently graduated a post masters program and took AACN'S ACCNS-AG in October. Fortunately, AACN offered a free review course when you register for that particular exam.

Specializes in L/D 4 yrs & Level 3 NICU 22 yrs.

I will graduate in May and be eligible to sit for the neonatal CNS exam offered through AACN (the ACCNS-N exam).

tbpmom

13 Posts

Specializes in Med-Surg, ICU.

I am ACNS-BC from ANCC as that is what my program offered in 2010.

Now it is the the Adult-Gero of course.

rackyokah

3 Posts

Hi Ahhphoey,

I am preparing for the AACN ACCNS-AG exam in a few weeks. I am using the AACN free review course, and AACN CCRN review course as well as a package l purchased from exam edge.

please do you have any pearls of wisdom that l could benefit from?. I feel like am all over the place with my study material. Since you have taken the exam, was the free review course from AACN sufficient? How was the exam generally? would you say it was difficult? Any thoughts/insights would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks in advance.

SHGR, MSN, RN, CNS

2 Articles; 1,406 Posts

Specializes in nursing education.
Hi Ahhphoey,

I am preparing for the AACN ACCNS-AG exam in a few weeks. I am using the AACN free review course, and AACN CCRN review course as well as a package l purchased from exam edge.

please do you have any pearls of wisdom that l could benefit from?. I feel like am all over the place with my study material. Since you have taken the exam, was the free review course from AACN sufficient? How was the exam generally? would you say it was difficult? Any thoughts/insights would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks in advance.

I know you directed this at a different member, but I took and passed this exam in June '15. I used the book list that is provided with the exam blueprint. So I didn't take a course, but spent a lot of time reading. I found there was a lot of geriatric content and a lot of "living with chronic condition" content. Chronic Illness 7th Ed. was an excellent resource and I recommend it highly for anyone taking AGCNS exam.

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