The certification fee in place at the time the complete application is submitted will apply, regardless of circumstance. Complete applications include all requested information, agreement to the disclosure and affirmation, fees, and documentation (e.g., verification forms, transcripts, continuing education information, or other required documents).
Incomplete applications will not be processed. Candidates whose applications are incomplete will be notified and provided an opportunity to provide the missing information. Candidates whose applications are incomplete will not be permitted to test until all required documentation is received by ONCC and the application is approved.
All candidates will submit applications via online registration. Candidate documentation will be submitted electronically by uploading to the online registration system.
The ONCC Board will review and determine all fees annually. Subject to annual approval, fees may increase annually using guide indices such as the Consumer Price Index (CPI) for the period since the previous increase to determine reasonableness.
Nurses who are current members of the Oncology Nursing Society (ONS) or the Association of Pediatric Hematology Oncology Nurses (APHON) will receive a discount for certification fees.
Conduct, Allegation Notice, Review, Sanction, and Appeals
ONCC defines and grants nursing credentials (including but not limited to the OCN®, AOCN®, AOCNP®, AOCNS®, CPON®, CPHON®, CBCN®, BMTCN® certifications) and renewal of credentials/certification to those nurses who meet the established requirements, thereby demonstrating they have specific knowledge and experience.
Under certain circumstances, initial or renewal of certification may be denied or active certification sanctioned due to one or more of the following:
- Misrepresentation, misuse, and/or fraudulent use of the OCN®, AOCN®, AOCNS®, AOCNP®, CPON®, CPHON®, CBCN®, BMTCN® credential(s), the ONCC® mark, or any other mark of ONCC
- Failure to meet eligibility requirements or pay required fees
- Cheating on the certification examination or assessment
- Assisting others to cheat on the certification examination or assessment
- Unauthorized possession of ONCC examination, assessment, or other confidential materials
- Failure of the examination
- Failure to meet requirements for renewal of certification
- Falsification of any information requested by ONCC
- Lack of current, unencumbered RN license, including licenses currently subjected to formal discipline by any state board of nursing and licenses with provisions or conditions that limit the nurse’s practice in any way.
- Criminal convictions under federal or state law in a matter related to the practice of, or qualifications for, professional activity. Criminal activity includes indictment, arrest, conviction, or plea of guilty to any felony and/or misdemeanor within the past 3 years or limitation, sanction, revocation, or suspension by a healthcare organization, professional organization, or other private or governmental body relating to nursing or public health safety
- Failure to notify ONCC in writing within 30 days of any restriction placed on the RN license (including APRN license) or criminal convictions related to their practice
- Gross or repeated negligence, malpractice, or willful misconduct in professional practice
- Violation of ONCC’s Code of Conduct
B. Review of Eligibility Decisions.
In the event of a determination that an individual has been denied certification or recertification, based on a failure to satisfy application or eligibility requirements, pay fees required by ONCC, or failure of the examination, the individual shall have thirty (30) days to file a written request for review. ONCC shall review and issue a decision on the request. Failure of the exam alone is not basis for review or appeal. Candidates who fail the exam and believe irregular testing conditions (e.g., medical emergency, significant test site disruption) were a contributing factor may file a written request for review. (7/23)
C. Review of Alleged Violations of ONCC’s Rules (other than eligibility decisions).
This section outlines the process to be followed when an individual is alleged to have violated the rules identified in Section A. Conduct. These rules shall be published and available to the public.
ONCC shall provide the individual with written notice of the alleged violation which will include:
a. The rule or rules identified in Section A. Conduct alleged to have been violated by the individual;
b. The facts surrounding the allegation;
c. An opportunity for the individual to respond in writing to the allegation within thirty (30) days of the individual’s receipt of the allegation; and
d. Notice that a failure to timely respond to the allegation may result in the issuance of sanctions against the individual’s certification or eligibility for certification or recertification.
- If the individual has filed an application for certification or recertification with ONCC at the time of receipt of the alleged violation, the application shall be suspended pending determination of the alleged violation.
- If the alleged violation arises out of conduct during or relating to an ONCC examination or assessment administration, the individual’s results may be invalidated.
- Upon receipt of the individual’s response or expiration of the thirty (30) day response period, the executive director and/or Discipline Subcommittee shall authorize an investigation into its specific facts or circumstances to whatever extent is necessary to clarify, expand, or corroborate the information provided by the submitted. The executive director and/or Discipline Subcommittee may be assisted in the conduct of its investigation by other members of the ONCC Board of Directors, ONCC staff, and/or legal counsel. The submitter, certificant who is the subject of the investigation, or other individuals who may have knowledge of the facts and circumstances surrounding the complaint may be contacted as part of the investigation.
- All investigations and deliberations are conducted in confidence, with all written communications sealed and marked “Personal and Confidential,” and they are conducted objectively, without any indication of prejudgment. An investigation may be directed toward any aspect of a complaint which is relevant or potentially relevant. Formal hearings are not held, and the parties are not expected to be represented by counsel, although the executive director and/or Discipline Subcommittee may consult their own counsel. The rules of evidence do not apply, and there are no witnesses, cross-examination, or other features of a court trial.
- Upon completion of an investigation and deliberations, the executive director and/or Discipline Subcommittee shall render a decision on the matter. The decision shall be documented in a written report or minutes that address the investigation, deliberation, determination of violation or dismissal, sanction (if appropriate), and rationale. The decision may include the issuance of sanctions against the individual’s certification, recertification or eligibility for certification or recertification. These sanctions may be reported to appropriate individuals and/or institutions (e.g., state licensing boards, employers, and membership societies).
The purpose of ONCC certification is to provide assurance that the nurse using the OCN®, AOCN®, AOCNS®, AOCNP®, CPON®, CPHON®, CBCN®, BMTCN®, and/or any other ONCC credential(s) possesses knowledge essential to providing nursing care to the population stipulated by the certification. Consequently, individuals using the credential must demonstrate the required level of knowledge and meet the requirements for attainment and maintenance of the credential. Failure to meet these standards may result in the issuance of sanctions.
- ONCC may issue sanctions that include, but are not limited to, denials of initial certification, renewal or recertification, revocation, suspension or any other limitation of certification or combination of sanctions.
- Upon being notified of a possible violation, ONCC shall, in its sole discretion, investigate the allegation or decline to act on the matter.
- If ONCC believes that there has been a possible violation of the conditions identified in Section A, the review and appeals processes may be instituted (sections C and E).
- The official sanction shall state whether official notice of the sanction will be provided to the individual’s state licensing board(s), employer(s), professional membership societies, and/or others. Such notice, if authorized by the sanction, shall not be given until the expiration and/or resolution of any appeal.
- It should be emphasized that actions taken under these policies do not constitute enforcement of the law, although referral to appropriate federal, state, or local government agencies may be made about the conduct of the certificant in appropriate situations. Individuals initially bringing complaints are not entitled to any relief or damages by virtue of this process, although they may receive notice of the actions taken to be determined by ONCC. Commercial disputes are not considered under these Policies.
The individual may file a written appeal request within thirty (30) days of the date of their receipt of the determination in either B or C, above. The review processes described in Section B or C (as appropriate) must be completed before an individual may file an appeal with the Appeals Committee.
- The written request for appeal must be received by ONCC within the 30-day deadline, must include the ONCC appeal application form and the appeal-processing fee, and must specify the type of appeal forum being requested by the individual (e.g., written appeal or telephone conference call with option of video conference call, if technology is available to all participants).
- Under no circumstances shall an individual be permitted to review secure examinations, assessments or items that appear on the examination or assessment.
- The appeal shall not include a hearing or any similar trial-type proceeding. The rules of evidence do not apply, and there are no witnesses, cross-examination, or other features of a court trial. Legal counsel is not expected to participate in the appeals process, unless requested by the appellant and approved by the ONCC Appeals Committee. The ONCC Board and/or ONCC Appeals Committee may consult ONCC legal counsel.
- The appeal shall be decided by the Appeals Committee (identified in Policy 5.00). The appellant shall bear the burden of demonstrating that the decision denying or sanctioning eligibility for certification or recertification was based on erroneous factual determination; or was arbitrary, capricious, or unreasonable. All decisions of the Appeals Committee shall be final unless appealed to the ONCC Board of Directors.
- The decision of the executive director and/or Discipline Subcommittee shall remain in effect until completion of the investigation, and the rendering of a decision by the Appeals Committee.
- All investigations and deliberations under these policies are conducted in confidence, with all written communications sent to individuals by a secure delivery service. Actions taken under these Policies do not constitute enforcement of the law, although referral to appropriate federal, state, or local government agencies may be made about the conduct of the certificant in appropriate situations. Any individual initially bringing complaints is not entitled to any relief or damages by virtue of this process, although they may receive notice of the actions taken. Commercial disputes are not considered under these Policies.
- Decision of the Appeals Committee may be submitted to the ONCC Board of Directors for written review and action by the Board. The Appeals Committee decision must be submitted to the ONCC Board of Directors via written appeal, within thirty (30) days of the individual’s receipt of the Appeal Committee decision. There is an additional fifty dollar ($50) filing fee for requesting review by the ONCC Board of Directors. The Board of Directors will review and decide the matter based on the written record of the Appeals Committee. No additional information may be provided at this stage. The decision of the Board of Directors shall be final and may not be appealed.
F. Voluntary Credential Surrender.
If a certificant who is the subject of a complaint voluntarily surrenders their ONCC certification at any time during the pendency of a complaint under these Policies, the complaint is dismissed without any further action by ONCC.
- ONCC, at its discretion, may communicate the fact and date of resignation, and the fact and general nature of the complaint, which was pending at the time of the resignation, to or at the request of a government entity engaged in the administration of law or professional licensure.
- Similarly, in the event of such resignation, the person or entity who submitted the complaint may be notified of the fact and date of resignation and that ONCC has dismissed the complaint as a result.
- In the event of such resignation, the certificant shall not be eligible to re-apply for certification for five (5) years from the date of resignation.
Conferring of Initial Certification
Nursing certification is a process to validate a registered nurse’s qualifications and knowledge of a specific area of nursing. Certification promotes public safety and assures the public that a certified nurse has completed all eligibility criteria required for a specific credential. This promotes the development of specialty areas of nursing by establishing minimum competency standards and recognizing those who have met the standards. ONCC’s mission is to promote excellence in patient care and professional practice by validating specialized knowledge in oncology nursing and related specialties. To support this mission, ONCC sets competency standards for initial certification in the specialty of oncology nursing and related specialties.
The Oncology Certified Nurse (OCN®) certification is for registered nurses who practice in adult oncology, whether in clinical practice, nursing administration, education, research, or consultation. The OCN® requires a current, active, unencumbered license as a registered nurse; practice hours as a registered nurse in the oncology specialty in the years prior to application; and education hours in the specialty in the years prior to application.
The Certified Breast Care Nurse (CBCN®) certification is for registered nurses who practice in the specialty of breast care, whether in clinical practice, nursing administration, education, research, or consultation. The CBCN® encompasses the entire spectrum of breast care nursing practice and requires a current, active, unencumbered license as a registered nurse in the breast care nursing practice specialty in the years prior to application; and education hours in the specialty in the years prior to application.
The Advanced Oncology Certified Nurse Practitioner (AOCNP®) certification is for advanced practice nurses who possess a graduate degree from an accredited nurse practitioner program and who practice as a Nurse Practitioner (NP) in adult oncology. The AOCNP® requires a current, active, unencumbered license as a registered nurse; a graduate degree from an accredited NP program with a concentration in oncology or acceptable population; practice hours as a registered nurse practitioner in the oncology specialty in the years prior to application; and education hours in the specialty in the years prior to application.
The Certified Pediatric Hematology Oncology Nurse (CPHON®) certification is for registered nurses who practice in pediatric hematology/oncology, whether in clinical practice, nursing administration, education, research, or consultation. The CPHON® requires a current, active, unencumbered license as a registered nurse; practice hours as a registered nurse in the pediatric hematology oncology nursing practice in the years prior to application; and education hours in the specialty in the years prior to application.
The Blood & Marrow Transplant Certified Nurse (BMTCN®) certification is for registered nurses who practice in blood and marrow stem cell transplantation, whether in clinical practice, nursing administration, education, research, or consultation with adult or pediatric patients. The BMTCN® requires a current, active, unencumbered license as a registered nurse; practice hours as a registered nurse in the BMT specialty in the years prior to application; and education hours in the specialty in the years prior to application.
Eligibility Criteria: The eligibility requirements for ONCC certifications are set upon the philosophical foundation that validation of a nurse's specialized knowledge and experience requires a combination of successful performance on a test of knowledge, current application of that knowledge in practice, and a demonstrated commitment to continuous learning of the evolving field. A review of requirements for similar certifications and a review of literature related to competency and experience, summarized in Benner's Novice to Expert Model (Benner, 1984), provided context and constructs upon which ONCC certification eligibility criteria are based. Specific eligibility criteria for each ONCC certification are listed in the respective program information section of oncc.org.
Certification renewal is due every four years. The four-year time period is appropriate given the rate of development of new knowledge in the specialty of oncology, the frequency with which new editions of oncology nursing textbooks are published, the rate at which updated educational tools and resources are issued by expert sources (e.g., the Oncology Nursing Society and the Association of Hematology/Oncology Nurses), and the recertification intervals for other specialty nursing certifications. The four-year time period also is aligned with the ONCC policy of conducting Role Delineation Studies once every four years for each of its certification programs to document changes to the required knowledge base (see ONCC Policy 16.01).
It is the responsibility of the certified nurse to apply for renewal of certification by the required application date. ONCC shall attempt to provide renewal notices to all certified nurses prior to the expiration date of the current credentials. Failure to receive a renewal notice does not relieve the certified nurse of the responsibility to apply for renewal prior to the application deadline date.
All certification renewal candidates must have a current, active, unencumbered license as a registered nurse in the United States or Canada to be eligible to renew certification. An unencumbered license is one that is not currently subjected to formal discipline by any state board of nursing and has no provisions or conditions that limit the nurse’s practice in any way.
Nurses educated and/or licensed outside the United States, its territories, or Canada must have their education and licensure evaluated for equivalency by a foreign credential evaluation service. Only those whose evaluation indicates U.S. equivalency will be eligible to renew certification.
Candidates and ONCC-certified nurses must notify ONCC in writing within 30 days if any restriction of any kind is placed on their RN license (including APRN license). Failure to notify ONCC may result in sanctions.
To demonstrate continued competency and renew certification, all candidates must meet two of the three renewal criteria: current practice, professional development, and successful retesting.
- Option 1 includes current practice and professional development (ILNA points)
- Option 2 includes current practice and successful retesting
- Option 3 includes professional development (ILNA points) and successful retesting.
Those who hold OCN®, CPHON®, AOCNP®, CBCN®, or BMTCN® certification may renew certification via Option 1, 2, or 3. Because the AOCNS®, AOCN®, and CPON® examinations are no longer administered, those who hold an AOCNS®, AOCN®, or CPON® certification can renew only via Option 1.
Professional development categories in which candidates may accrue points include:
- continuing nursing education (must be approved/accredited by an acceptable accrediting/approval body)
- continuing medical education
- academic education
- professional publications or presentations (oncology content only)
There is no limit to the amount of continuing medical education that may be submitted.
Candidates who initially pass an ONCC examination will use their results report to determine the number of professional development points needed for the first renewal cycle. Domains in which points are required will be identified on the results report. The accrual period for earning points will begin with the date the test was passed through the application submission date; all points must be earned by the final renewal deadline date.
Candidates renewing certification earned by professional development points in the second or subsequent renewal cycle will use the assessment diagnostic report received upon completion of the assessment. Domains in which points are required will be identified on the assessment diagnostic report”. These certified nurses may take the ILNA assessment upon notification of successful recertification by professional development points, through January 31 of the year renewal is due. For example, a nurse who successfully renewed by professional development points in August 2018 will be certified through December 31, 2022. The nurse will be eligible to take the assessment beginning in September 2018 through January 31, 2022. The accrual period for earning points will begin with the date the assessment was taken through the application submission date; all points must be earned by the final renewal deadline date.
Each application for the renewal of an ONCC certification shall be reviewed by professional ONCC staff to determine the eligibility of the candidate. Documentation of education, licensure, years, and hours of experience shall be verified. Professional staff will also verify that each candidate for renewal has met the professional development requirements.
Candidates attempting to renew certification by professional development, who fail to meet the criteria, may pay only the transfer fee and meet the eligibility criteria to take the test at the next administration. If the candidate’s certification expires prior to retesting, the candidate must discontinue use of the credential. The candidate may resume use of the credential only upon notice of passing the examination.
Candidates who are denied renewal by professional development will not be granted a refund of the renewal fee. This includes candidates who are denied renewal due to insufficient points, insufficient documentation, or failure to submit audit or other documentation requested by ONCC.
Candidates attempting to renew certification by retesting, and who do not attain a passing score on the test may not renew by professional development points.
Candidates who are renewing multiple certification credentials in the same year by any renewal method, must meet the renewal eligibility criteria for each certification and may use the same professional development points for each certification they renew provided those points meet the criteria for renewal of each certification. The fee for renewing multiple certifications through Option 1 or 3 during the same year shall be $100 more than the prevailing fee for the desired renewal option.
Persons who are unable to renew certification due to extenuating circumstances (e.g., medical illness, acts of war, or acts of nature) should contact ONCC, preferably prior to the final deadline, or at the first available opportunity if unable to contact prior to the final deadline to make appropriate arrangements for renewal.
Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion; Non-discrimination; and Anti-bias
ONCC achieves its mission by engaging and serving the nursing community, a population composed of a wide variety of individuals that have many differences. As a credentialing organization, ONCC is committed to respecting, accepting, and embracing the diversity of all our candidates, certificants, and their employers; volunteers; vendor partners; employees; and our other stakeholders. ONCC supports individual success by supporting inclusive environments and unbiased treatment through our credentialing processes, events, recognition programs, and workplaces.
ONCC does not and shall not discriminate on the basis of age, gender, gender identify, gender expression, ethnic origin, color, religion, race, disability, marital status, sexual orientation, or military status in any of its activities or operations. These include, but are not limited to, approval of certification/recertification applicants, hiring and firing of staff, selection of volunteers and vendors, and provision of services.
ONCC actively works to eliminate bias and increase sensitivity in its examination programs. All individual items, the test or assessment as a whole, directions and the ONCC Handbooks are reviewed for bias and sensitivity by specially trained testing agency staff and by ONCC staff using the ETS Guidelines for Fairness Review of Assessment
Fraudulent Use of ONCC Credentials
ONCC shall thoroughly investigate all reports of an individual fraudulently using the OCN®, AOCN®, AOCNS®, AOCNP®, CPON®, CPHON®, CBCN®, BMTCN®, or any other ONCC® credential.
If evidence is obtained that an individual who is not authorized to use an ONCC credential has used the credential, ONCC shall write a letter to the individual stating that ONCC has documented evidence that the individual has used an ONCC credential and that ONCC has no record of the individual's certification or renewal of expired certification. The individual shall be requested to provide proof of current ONCC certification (e.g., prove that certification was obtained under a different name) or discontinue use of the credential. The individual shall be informed that documented fraudulent use of an ONCC credential shall result in ONCC taking appropriate action against the individual, which may include sanctions and reporting the fraudulent use to appropriate individuals and/or institutions (e.g., state licensing boards, employers, and membership societies).
Handling of Irregular Incidents
All incidents of suspected and/or confirmed irregular behavior shall be reported to ONCC immediately. Proctors shall manage and report to ONCC irregularities with appropriate level of documented details to support incident investigation that might follow. ONCC shall investigate such incidents and take appropriate action, based on the collective judgment of the ONCC Board, staff, legal counsel (when appropriate), and testing agency staff. Cheating during an examination or assessment or assisting others to cheat during an examination or assessment shall be grounds for revocation of certification and/or other disciplinary action. ONCC reserves the right to cancel scores or assessment diagnostic results resulting from any irregularity.
A portion of the application fee will be returned to a candidate who cannot take the test and submits a written request for a fee refund. This request must be received prior to the expiration date of the current Authorization to Test (ATT), or the candidate forfeits all fees. The candidate must also cancel the appointment (if made) by calling the testing company at least two days before the scheduled appointment. Candidates may also be required to pay a fee to the testing company if the appointment is cancelled within the “fee required” timeframe.
|Cancellation/Reschedule Period||Cancellation/Reschedule Fee|
|15 or more days before the test date||No fee|
|2-14 days before scheduled test date||$35 per cancellation/reschedule to be collected by testing company from the candidate|
|No cancellation/reschedule permitted; full test delivery fee will be charged by testing company to ONCC; candidate forfeits appointment and fee.|
Acts of Nature
In the event that an act of nature or other catastrophic event prevents a candidate or candidates from taking the test as scheduled a portion of the test fee will be refunded or the candidate may transfer, at no charge, to an administration within the following one-year period. The candidate’s eligibility will be verified to ensure all criteria is met for the subsequent test administration. A new application will be requested if the candidate’s eligibility is questionable.
All applications for certification renewal using Option 1 (practice hours + professional development) must be received by the ONCC office by October 15 (or the following business day if October 15 falls on a weekend), regardless of postmark, of the year certification is due to expire.
Candidates who wish to maintain their certification, but miss the final deadline for certification renewal, may:
a. apply to re-take the examination in the following year as an initial candidate (if the credential offers an examination) (7/23), or
b. apply for certification reinstatement by Option 1 (practice hours + professional development) on or before March 31 of the year immediately following the credential expiration date, or
c. Apply for certification reinstatement by Option 3 (test + professional development) and test on or before March 31 of the year immediately following the credential expiration date (if the credential offers an examination). (7/23)
- Nurses may not use the credential after their certification expires on December 31 but may again use the credential after being notified that their certification has been reinstated.
- Reinstatement is retroactive and the certification period will not be extended.
- Reinstatement requires that the candidate meets eligibility criteria for credential renewal as of the final renewal deadline (October 15 in the year renewal is due) and that the candidate submit all required application(s) and learning plan(s), as well as documentation of meeting the Option 1 or Option 3 requirements, as they would do if their professional development documentation was audited. All CE certificates, transcripts or other documentation that would usually be required if the candidate submitted the application on time and was audited must be submitted with the application for reinstatement.
- Candidates who apply for reinstatement must submit their application and required documentation to ONCC by mail or fax (Option 1 reinstatement applications must be submitted electronically; Option 3 reinstatement applications are paper applications and must be submitted by mail to the ONCC bank lockbox or by secure fax); the Learning Plans must be submitted electronically for all reinstatement candidates.
- Candidates must pay the reinstatement fee of $300, in addition to the application fee for Option 1 or Option 3.
- Candidates who miss the final deadline for reinstatement of their certification may request a review, the results of which may be appealed. All requests for review and appeal must document the extenuating circumstances that caused the candidates to miss the deadline. The Director of Operations will conduct the review and the ONCC Appeals Committee will review and decide all appeals.
Candidates who apply for reinstatement must have earned all points by the date of submission of the reinstatement application or by the March 31 reinstatement deadline; points earned after March 31 will not be accepted.
An ONCC certified nurse who has applied for, and been granted Emeritus status per ONCC Policy 14.00, may apply for reinstatement of their active ONCC certification only if within the reinstatement deadline of their active credential. All criteria to reinstate must be met. Upon reinstatement of the active ONCC certification, the Emeritus credential will be immediately expired, and a new Emeritus application must be submitted for the reinstated active certification
Reporting of Results
Results Reports for test candidates
Prior to leaving the test center, test candidates will receive an immediate official pass/fail result on their computer screen. Candidates are subsequently provided by email a results report which provides their pass/fail result and information on the candidate’s performance in each of the test subject areas. The email message also includes instructions to access the vendor portal, view, and print their archived results report.
The passing score for all examinations shall be set at a scaled score of 55. Because equating is used to correct for differences in test difficulty, the passing score can be maintained at a scaled score of 55, even though the passing raw score may vary from test form to test form.
Test candidates who achieve a scaled score of 55 or above shall receive results reports indicating pass. Test candidates who achieve a scaled score of 54 or below shall receive results reports indicating fail. Additionally, the passing and individual’s numeric scaled score, as well as the minimum and maximum possible scaled scores, shall be reported to candidates that fail.
All test results reports also shall indicate the candidate’s performance in each of the test subject areas. Passing candidates will use this information to prepare for certification renewal. Failing candidates will use this information to identify areas in which additional study may be needed before retaking a test.
Verification of Scores
Computer-based tests (CBT) are scored twice as part of the routine quality assurance procedure. Because of the nature of CBT, hand scoring is not available to CBT candidates.
All assessment diagnostic reports will indicate the candidate’s performance in each of the subject areas. Assessment candidates will use this information to prepare for certification renewal.
ONCC will annually report the number of test candidates, both initial and retakes, number passed in each category, number failed in each category, and number recertified for each examination in the ONCC Annual Report and by posting on the ONCC Website.
Retaking an Examination
Candidates who fail an ONCC examination on the first attempt may apply for a retest immediately following the expiration of the current ATT, but may not take the same examination more than once during a 90-day test eligibility period. Candidates who fail an ONCC examination on the second attempt may apply for a retest immediately following the expiration of the current ATT, but may not take the same examination more than once during a 90-day test eligibility period.
Candidates who fail the test on a third attempt must wait one year before taking the test again if the three failed attempts occurred during a three-year period. If the three failures occurred over more than three years, the candidate may apply to retest immediately following the expiration of the current ATT, but may not take the same test more than one time during a 90-day test eligibility period.
Candidates taking a test for the second or subsequent time are not identified as repeat candidates at the test center. Candidates are not likely to receive the same form of the test as previously taken.
Security and Confidentiality - Release of Information
- Certification is a voluntary credentialing process with the goal of protecting the public. The purpose of certification is to ensure the public that the certified nurse has met all eligibility criteria and mastered particular knowledge to provide competent nursing care as measured by the examination.
- The names of nurses certified by ONCC shall be available to the public. ONCC will provide an online system to verify the current credential status of nurses certified by ONCC. The online system will display on screen the certified nurse’s name, credential(s) held, current certification cycle(s), and the nurse’s home city and state. This information may be printed, and the same information available on screen will be provided in the printed verification report. All requests for names of ONCC certified nurses must be made in writing, only names of currently certified nurses will be released for such requests, and verification will be provided only in writing. A fee, as determined by the ONCC Board of Directors, may be charged for the written verification of ONCC credentials.
- ONCC will not disclose confidential applicant/certificant information unless authorized in writing by the individual or as required by law. All application information is confidential and will not be shared with any party other than ONCC’s examination development or administration vendors for certification processing purposes. Information about applicants/certificants and their examination results is confidential. Examination scores are provided only to the individual candidate unless a signed release is provided. ONCC will discuss certification and assessment-related issues only with the candidate.
- Individual test score reports are provided to candidates on screen and by email via a secure candidate portal. If score reports must be mailed or emailed, they shall be sent only to candidates at the home postal or email address indicated by the candidate on their examination registration materials. ONCC staff will confirm home and/or email address prior to sending score reports.
- Individual assessment results are provided to candidates at the conclusion of the assessment, with the option to save and/or print the results. If assessment results must be mailed or emailed, they shall be sent only to the home postal or email address on file. ONCC staff will confirm home and/or email address prior to sending assessment results.
- ONCC may share aggregate information about ILNA content categories with certificants, NCPD/education providers and the public. Aggregate information may be posted annually on the ONCC website. The information will be specific to the ONCC credentials represented but will not identify candidates or groups of candidates. The aggregate information may be helpful in providing insight into the learning needs of the constituency and is provided in a consistent manner without preference or prejudice. Candidates are encouraged to use their individual score reports to identify their specific learning needs, if any.
Test Administration - Accidental Exit for CBT and Assessment
When a candidate selects the exit icon, a pop-up message is provided that requires the candidate to confirm their decision to exit. A total of two separate prompts will appear asking the candidate if they are sure they want to exit the examination.
In the event that a candidate accidentally exits a computer-based examination prior to completing the examination, the candidate may be re-entered into the examination by the test center administrator. Candidates will be resumed at the point of accidental exit; no additional time will be added.
When a candidate selects the option to end the assessment, two separate prompts will appear asking the candidate if they are sure they want to exit the assessment.
In the event that a candidate accidentally exits an assessment prior to completing the assessment, the candidate may be given the opportunity to have the assessment resumed by contacting ONCC. Details of the assessment (e.g., length of time spent on individual items, point at which exit occurred, etc.) will be reviewed prior to resuming the assessment. Candidates will be resumed at the point of accidental exit; no additional time will be added. Resumed assessments must be taken within 30 days.
1. Test Date Transfers Within Same Testing Window
If, after successful application, a candidate cannot take the test at the scheduled appointment time/date, the candidate may reschedule the test appointment for another day and/or time within the same testing window. The candidate must contact the testing company to reschedule; cancellation/reschedule fees may be incurred by the candidate and are payable directly to the testing company.
|Cancellation/Reschedule Period||Cancellation/Reschedule Fee|
|15 or more days before the test date||No fee|
|2-14 days before scheduled test date||$35 per cancellation/reschedule to be collected by testing company from the candidate|
|No cancellation/reschedule permitted; full test delivery fee will be charged by testing company to ONCC; candidate forfeits appointment and fee.|
2. Transferring to a Different Testing Window
If, after successful application, a candidate cannot take the test at the scheduled appointment time/date and wishes to transfer to a different testing window, the candidate may request a withdrawal from that particular administration for a later administration within the ensuing 12 months. A test window transfer is granted one time only. The candidate must notify ONCC in writing via a Transfer Request Form prior to the expiration of their current Authorization to Test (ATT). The candidate must also cancel the appointment (if made) by contacting the testing company, following the above Cancellation/Reschedule table. The candidate will pay a $100.00 administrative fee to ONCC for this service. The candidate may also incur a cancellation fee from the testing company, as described in the Cancellation/Reschedule table. The candidate’s eligibility will be verified to ensure all criteria are met for the subsequent test administration. A new application form will be requested if the candidate’s eligibility is questionable. If the candidate fails to take the test during the interval to which they transferred, the candidate will forfeit all test fees and must submit a new application and pay the full test fee for a subsequent administration. Transfers to a different testing window will be honored provided the above conditions are met.
3. Transfer from Certification Renewal Option 1 to Option 2
Candidates who attempt to renew certification by Option 1 but do not meet the required criteria, may pay only the transfer fee to take the test during a subsequent testing interval. The candidate’s eligibility will be verified to ensure all criteria are met for the subsequent testing interval. A new application form will be requested if the candidate’s eligibility is questionable. The candidate must make the request in writing. (See ONCC Policy 13.00)
4. Transfer from Certification Renewal Option 2 to Option 1
Candidates who submit an application to renew certification by Option 2 may transfer to renew certification by Option 1, prior to taking the test. The candidate will pay only the transfer fee and submit professional development documentation to ONCC by the posted deadline. The candidate must make the request in writing. Candidates who use Option 2 for certification renewal and who fail the examination may not transfer to Option 1 (see ONCC Policy 13.00).
5. Failure to Report to CBT Appointment
If a candidate fails to arrive for the scheduled appointment or does not cancel or reschedule the appointment as outlined in the Cancellation/Reschedule table, the candidate will forfeit all test fees and the test appointment and may incur an additional fee from the testing company. The candidate must submit a new application and pay the full test fee for a subsequent administration.
If you suspect a certified nurse of misconduct or believe a non-certified nurse is misrepresenting him/herself as an ONCC-certified nurse, you should report it to ONCC. Reports of misconduct are kept confidential, and you may report misconduct anonymously. Please provide as much information as possible so ONCC may conduct a thorough investigation.
To report misconduct, leave a voicemail message at 412.859.6244 or email email@example.com