Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) for Associate/Diploma (09) & Baccalaureate (40) Gerontological Nurse Certification Exams

Who offers the Gerontological Nurse certification exam?

All Gerontological Nurse exams are offered by the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC). ANCC is the largest nursing credentialing organization in the United States, certifying more that 145,000 nurses.

Where do I get the certification catalog to sign up for the exam?

Call ANCC at 1-800-284-2378 or visit ANCC's website to download the latest catalog. Click here to go to the find the materials on ANCC's website.

What kind of exam is it?

All Gerontological Nurse exams are computer-based, and are offered 6 days a week at hundreds of sites across the United States. To locate the testing center near you, click here.

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What content is included on the exam?

ANCC's ADN/Diploma (09) and Baccalaureate (40) Gerontological Nurse certification examinations tests examinees on four broad areas of content including (a) Primary Care Considerations, (b) Major Health Problems, (c) Organizational and Health Policy Issues, and (d) Professional Issues. For more detailed information visit the links below for the respective exams.

For those interested in the ADN/Diploma level certification please click here.

For those interested in the Baccalaureate level certification please click here.

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How do I count the 2000 clinical hours of Gerontological practice?

If you happen to work on a "geriatric" unit, in a long term care facility, or in a designated area for older patients then counting your hours is relatively straightforward.

Don't be discouraged if you don't happen to work in a setting like that. Did you know that approximately 50% of patients in the hospital today are over 65? So this means you probably spend 20 hours a week, at minimum, working with patients over 65. Think of it in these terms:

Chances are your Gerontological clinical hours total even more than that a year. You're well on your way to the required 2000 hours!

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How many continuing education contact hours do I need?

For your initial certification ANCC requires 30 contact hours focusing on Gerontological issues. Coming Soon - Register with ConsultGeriRn.org and keep track of your contact hours.

Can nurses who primarily work in academic settings become certified in Gerontological Nursing?

The American Nurses Credentialing Center welcomes and encourages nurses in academia to become certified in Gerontological Nursing. Although accumulating the necessary clinical hours for certification may seem unreachable at first glance, please be aware that preceptor hours that are directly related to the provision of nursing care for patients 65 years of age and older, including guiding, supervising, and/or directing care, counts towards the minimum of 2000 hours required for certification. Even if all of your responsibilities do not focus on older adults, remember that you can still count the number of hours that are related to their care.

For example, if you work 20 hours per work guiding care provided by 10 students, and 5 (e.g., 50%) are caring for older adults, then you can count 10 hours per week toward your clinical hours. It may take you somewhat longer to accumulate your hours, but most likely you are providing clinical supervision for students, many, if not all who are caring for older adults. Be sure to count all of the hours that you work to supervise them.

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Where can I find study materials?

We've assembled information on ConsultGeriRn.org to help you prepare for your certification exam, including ideas for preparation courses, official examination content outlines, free review courses and practice exams. Check out the "Preparing for my Exam" page on this website.

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What percentage of people pass?


Are there discounts available for the exam?

For the current fees and potential discounts for the Gerontological Nurse Certification Exam click here.