How to Study for the Emergency Nurse Practitioner Certification Exam

The Emergency Nurse Practitioner Certification is a new designation in the NP world (more on that here). In fact, the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners Certification Board will only begin offering the test this month. The new certification designation is surrounded by a lot of buzz as employers determine if the specialized certification will be required of nurse practitioners working in the emergency department. Understandably, NPs working in the ED are anxious about the possibility of taking another certification exam. 

If you’re a nurse practitioner working in the emergency department who will ultimately need to become certified, how do you prepare for your upcoming exam?

Given that the emergency nurse practitioner certification exam is very new, education companies have not yet developed resources to aid NPs in their preparation for the test. So, aspiring ENPs find themselves lost when it comes to studying. Fortunately, there are still a few ways nurse practitioners can prepare for the test. 

Know What’s On the Test

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The AANP gives a detailed outline about the type of content covered on the Emergency Nurse Practitioner certification exam as well as the number of questions dedicated to each type of content. 

Content on the ENP exam is broken down into five domains. These domains are outlined in the following table. 

Each of these domains consists of a variety of assessment items. Looking at these specific objectives will help nurse practitioners guide their study time. The table below outlines the items assessed within each domain. 

Finally, within these objectives, AANP outlines a variety of medical conditions nurse practitioners can expect to treat in the emergency department. The weight of each of these conditions is outlined in the following table. 

Practice Tests

The best way to study for nurse practitioner certification exams is by doing practice questions. At this time, however, there are no available practice tests for the ENP exam. The AANP does post practice exams for Family and Adult-Gerontology nurse practitioners. Aspiring ENPs may wish to use these tests to supplement their study. Using these available materials will at the very least familiarize NPs with how test questions on certification exams are written, even if content for the emergency exam will be somewhat different. 

Consider selecting practice questions from certification study materials for other Acute Care, Family, and Adult-Gerontology resources that relate to the AANP’s domains and patient conditions covered on the ENP exam. This will help guide your study in the absence of specialty specific materials. 

How will you study for the Emergency Nurse Practitioner certification exam?


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