Frequently Asked Questions About the Exam

Note: Our CPAN Exam for International Nurses has a dedicated Frequently Asked Questions page: Click Here


Q: In addition to meeting the eligibility requirements for the examination(s), are there any extra requirements before signing up for the examination(s)?
A: You must have a current email address to register online to take the examination(s). ABPANC, and our testing partner, PSI, will communicate with you primarily through email to confirm your test date and testing site. You will be required to enter an email address during the registration process. If you do not have a current email address, you can obtain one through a free service such as Gmail ( or Yahoo (

Q: Why am I being asked to provide verifiers?
A: The Learning Builder System asks that individuals add the names of at least two people who can attest to their clinical eligibility and RN licensure. Individuals applying for initial certification will need to show at least 1,200 hours of direct clinical experience in the last two years. Verifiers are not contacted during the application or testing process.

Q: How much does it cost to take the CPAN® or CAPA® examinations?
A: If you are an ASPAN member, the price to sit for the examination is $350.00. The regular registration fee is $424.00.

Q: Can I take both the CPAN and CAPA examinations during the same testing window?
A: Yes. You can take both examinations within the same testing window or even on the same day. Please note that you must apply for each examination separately and pay appropriate fees for each.


Q: What if I am unable to sit for the examination when I scheduled it?
A: Specific information about canceling a testing appointment is available in the Certification Candidate Handbook.

Q: How do I reschedule a testing appointment?
A: Candidates who need to re-schedule a testing appointment should contact PSI. Specific information on rescheduling a testing appointment is available in the Certification Candidate Handbook.

Q: How many times can I sit for the examination?
A: Candidates can sit for each examination once per testing window.

Q: What should I do if I’m requesting special accommodations?
A: You must contact PSI to arrange for Special Testing Accommodations at 1-866-830-1145 and you will need to provide appropriate documentation from a healthcare provider. Once your request has been received, the PSI Special Accommodations team will contact you. ABPANC complies with the American Disabilities Act (ADA)

Exam sites

Q: Where can I sit for the examination?
A: Candidates can take the examination at many of the hundreds of test sites that our testing partner, PSI, operates. When you apply to take an examination, you will be able to access a full list of test sites so that you can choose the location that is most convenient for you.

Q: What test dates are available for the CPAN and CAPA examinations?
A: ABPANC offers two, eight-week-long testing windows for candidates to take the CPAN and CAPA examinations. The spring window is March 15 – May 15 and the fall window is September 15 – November 15 each year. Annual exam registration windows are January 1 – April 30 for the spring and July 1 – October 31 for the fall. Please note: the last day of the registration window is a FINAL deadline. Applications submitted electronically after 11:59 PM ET on this date will NOT be accepted.
Note: PSI Test Center seats fill up quickly, so it is highly recommended that you register for your exam and schedule your exam appointment as soon as you receive your eligibility confirmation email. The later you apply and schedule, the fewer options you may have for test date, location and method.

Q: How do I schedule my testing appointment?
A: You can schedule your exam appointment directly through your application record that says “Awaiting Scores.” To schedule your exam appointment, log into your Learning Builder account  and click on the Exam Appointment link. Follow the prompts to schedule your date, time and location of the exam you wish to take.

You will receive a confirmation email after you have made your exam appointment.

If you are unable to find the site information to schedule your own appointment online, please feel free to contact PSI directly at 866-830-1145 for assistance.

Q: What will I need to get into the testing site?
A: One form of identification, including valid photo identification, is required for admission to the examination test site. Please see the Certification Candidate Handbook for more information.

Q: Are the testing sites noisy because other test candidates are typing?
A: PSI testing sites use state-of-the-art keyboards that are the quietest available to keep the testing site noise level at a minimum. You may bring soft ear plugs to the test site.


Q: Do I have to be an experienced computer user to take the computer-based examination?
A: No prior computer experience is necessary. At the beginning of an examination, each candidate will receive a brief tutorial on how to use the computer to answer questions and review responses. Test center staff members are always available to answer questions. The complete tutorial lasts 15 minutes and does not count against your overall testing time.

Q: How much time do I have to take the examination?
A: You have three hours to complete the examination. The computer has a clock to monitor your time. The clock will also count down the time remaining.

Q: Is there a practice test I can take before sitting for the computer-based examination?
A: There are practice examinations available for purchase for both the CPAN and CAPA examinations.

Q: How is the examination scored?
A: The passing scores for the CPAN and CAPA examinations are initially determined based on a criterion referenced system. Candidate scores are determined based on the number of test questions answered correctly (raw score). To ensure fairness of the examination process, a statistical method called equating is used. Following equating, raw scores are mathematically converted into scaled scores (ranging from 200-800). The passing scores for the CPAN and CAPA examinations have been set by ABPANC at 450. Therefore, for both the CPAN and CAPA examinations, a score of 450 scale score units must be obtained to pass. Detailed information about scoring is available in the Certification Candidate Handbook.

Q: Will my score be available as soon as I finish the examination?
A: When you finish the exam, or after the three hour time limit has lapsed, you will receive your final, official Score Report that indicates whether or not you passed.

Q: Who Writes the CPAN and CAPA Examinations?

Examination questions are written by practicing perianesthesia nurses who are CPAN and/or CAPA certified. Interested in volunteering to write items/questions? Click here for more information on how to get involved.

Q: How do I get my CPAN or CAPA certificate?

A: Your certificate and wallet ID verifying your CPAN or CAPA certification are available for download in Learning Builder. Here are three easy steps to access your certificate and wallet ID:

  1. Log in to Learning Builder at and go to the “My Account” section in the top, right-hand corner. This takes you to your “Account Details” Section.
  2. Scroll down to the blue ribbon that says “CPAN/CAPA and Practitioner.”
  3. Click on your certification and scroll down to the bottom of the section. You will see “Download Certificate” and “Download Wallet ID” links. You can now print the downloaded certificate.

We encourage you to print and frame your certificate and laminate your wallet ID. ABPANC will no longer send certificates and wallet IDs in the mail.