How to Apply Renewal Points


Renewal Points

Earn points for certification renewal by completing professional development activities, such as nursing continuing education, continuing medical education, continuing pharmacy education, academic education, publications, or presentations. You are not required to complete a specific type of activity.

Enter your points in LearningBuilder, through your ONCC account login. ONCC will notify you when you can access LearningBuilder. Keep documentation of the points you earn (e.g., CE certificates, program descriptions, grade reports). You will need this information when entering points in LearningBuilder. You may be asked to provide documentation of your points. You can upload these documents in LearningBuilder but it is not required unless your application is audited or it is requested.

Time Period to Earn Points (Accrual Period)

  • First renewal after passing a test: use points earned from the date you pass the test through the date the renewal application and points are submitted. All points must be earned and submitted by the final renewal application deadline.
  • Renewed certification by points the last time? You must take the assessment before earning points for your next renewal. Points may be earned until the renewal application and points are submitted. The application and points must be submitted by the final renewal application deadline date. All points must be earned by the final renewal application deadline.
  • AOCN®, AOCNS® and CPON® renewal candidates may submit points earned since their last renewal. (AOCN®, AOCNS® and CPON® renewal candidates do not take an assessment.)
  • If you are eligible to take the assessment, but do not do so, you may renew certification by submitting 100 points that exactly match the subject areas and weighting of the current test content outline. If submitting 100 points that match the test content outline, points may be earned from January 1 of the current certification period through the date the application is submitted. All points must be earned by the final renewal application deadline. Contact ONCC to have a 100-point plan created for you.


Follow these steps to find, earn, and apply points for renewal.

Step 1: Find Points

Most nurses earn renewal points by completing continuing education activities. You may also earn points through academic education, professional publications and presentations. See below to determine the number points you can use for renewal based on the type of activities you completed. Note the records you should keep in the event you are asked to provide documentation.

Continuing Education (including CNE, NCPD, CME, CPE)

Points Awarded: 1 contact hour = 1 point

  • CE programs must have been provided by or formally approved for contact hours by an accredited approver of continuing nursing education (CNE or NCPD), continuing medical education (CME), or continuing pharmacy education (CPE). Points are awarded for completing an eligible educational activity one time during the accrual period.

Records to Keep: Keep the CE certificate awarded by the provider. It must include an accreditation statement or provider number, your name, the title and date of the CE offering, and the number of contact hours awarded. Keep the program outline or description.

Academic Education

Points Awarded: 1 academic credit = 15 points

  • Points are awarded for completing academic courses that address the subject area(s) identified by the learning needs assessment or test results report. You do not have to be enrolled in a degree program. Courses must be provided by accredited colleges or universities. A grade of "C" or higher must be achieved.

Records to Keep: Keep a copy of the grade report(s), course description(s), or transcripts provided by the school. The grade report or transcript must include your name, course title(s), course date(s), and the grade(s) earned.


Points Awarded: 1 hour of presentation = 3 points; Poster presentation = 3 points.

  • Points are awarded for educational presentations made to nurses, healthcare providers, or the public. The presentation must be delivered in a structured framework of teaching/learning. The presentation content must address a subject area(s) on the learning needs assessment or test results report. Presentations or lectures that are part of your job expectations may not be submitted for points (i.e., presentations made to institution staff by a staff educator).
  • Points are awarded only for the first time a presentation/poster is given. No points are awarded for repeat presentations of the same material. Note: In the case of multiple presenters, you may claim points only for your portion of the presentation. For example, if 3 nurses present a 1-hour panel discussion, each nurse may claim one point.

Records to Keep: Keep a copy of the program(s) or proceeding(s) that list you as a presenter and the title, date, and length of your presentation(s).


  • Points are awarded for items published in books, journals, professional newsletters, or electronic media for which you were an author, editor, or peer reviewer. Only publications of content that address the specific subject area(s) identified by the learning needs assessment or test results report are acceptable. Points are not awarded for materials that are "in press."
  • Points Awarded: Points for joint authorship are determined by dividing the total number of points for the publication by the number of authors.
    • Book, author or editor (300 pages or more) – 60 points
    • Book, author or editor (less than 300 pages) – 40 points
    • Book chapter (more than 15 pages) – 25 points
    • Book chapter (15 pages or less) – 20 points
    • Doctoral dissertation – 10 points
    • Master's thesis, unpublished – 10 points
    • Original research article, peer-reviewed journal, lead author – 20 points
    • Original research article, peer-reviewed journal, co-author – 15 points
    • Original journal article, peer-reviewed journal, lead author – 15 points
    • Original journal article, peer-reviewed journal, co-author – 10 points
    • Guest editor for journal issue – 20 points
    • Article, non-peer reviewed journal, any medium – 5 points
    • Journal column – 5 points
    • Editorial in peer-reviewed journal – 5 points
    • Book review – 5 points
    • Multimedia Educational aids – 5-10 points (depending on length and content)
    • Research abstract – 5 points
    • Article in newsletter or magazine, more than 1000 words – 5 points
    • Article in newsletter or magazine, 250-1000 words – 3 points
    • Journal reviewer – 1 point per article
    • Editorial board member – 1 point per column edited

Records to Keep: Keep a copy of each publication. If your application is selected for audit, you will be required to submit a copy of short publications or a copy of the title page, the page showing the date of publication, and table of contents where your name is listed as an author for longer publications.

Step 2: Apply Your Points

After you complete an activity apply the points to subject areas in LearningBuilder. Use your best nursing judgment. Decide what an offering is about at a high-level. If you believe a program could count in more than one subject area, select the area where you believe it best fits.

Here are some examples to start. Need more examples? Check out these sample topics by ILNA category.

Immunotherapy 101

This session was an introduction to Immunotherapy.

Applicable categories by credential:

OCN®, CBCN®, AOCNP® - Treatment
CPHON® - Care of the Pediatric Hematology Oncology Patient


Reducing Compassion Fatigue

Discuss the effects of compassion fatigue on nurses and ways to combat it.

Applicable categories by credential:

OCN® - Oncology Nursing Practice
CPHON® - Care of the Pediatric Hematology and Oncology Patient
BMTCN® - Professional Performance
AOCNP® - Professional Practice
CBCN® - Nursing Practice


Step 3: Enter Points in LearningBuilder

Enter the points you earn for renewal in LearningBuilder. You will submit your points when you apply for renewal in the year your certification expires.

  1. Access LearningBuilder by logging into your account.
  2. Once logged in, click on My Account.
  3. Click on "Enter Renewal Points in LearningBuilder."
  4. Use your ONCC/ONS username and password to log into LearningBuilder.
  5. Once logged in, click on "My Cycle"
  6. To enter points, click on the Add Activity button.
  7. A window will open to select the activity type (e.g., continuing education, presentation, publication, etc.)
  8. Enter details about the activity, such as title, provider, date completed, etc. 
  9. Select the subject area(s) where the points apply.
  10. Save your entry by clicking the Submit button in the lower right corner. This will add the activity.
  11. Want a step-by-step guide to LearningBuilder? Check out the User's Guide to LearningBuilder.

Step 4: Apply for Renewal

Applying for certification renewal is a two-step process.

1. Submit your points in LearningBuilder


2. Submit a renewal application by clicking on My Account and selecting: Renew my Certification.

Contact Information


(US and Canada only)

Fax number:
412.859.6167 (new)