New Core Certification: Inpatient Antepartum Nursing (RNC-IAP)

NCC is pleased to debut a new core exam for those wishing to demonstrate their expertise in Inpatient Antepartum Nursing (RNC-IAP). Don't wait, be the first to earn your IAP-RNC certification.  It is to your advantage to test early during the exam’s introductory phases!

Individuals who take the first test will get the "Benefit of the doubt" when determining their pass/fail status. Since new exams have no statistical history, any question that does not meet psychometric standards will be deleted from scoring and will not count toward an individual’s score.


This new exam will be introduced in two phases to establish the passing score for each exam form. The exam taken during each phase will have delayed scoring until enough candidates have completed the exam to allow for psychometric analysis of the exam results and completion of standard setting to use for pass/fail decision.  Due to a delay in the score, those who participate in phase I and II testing will be eligible for NCC's Second Chance Free promotion. See the details below. 

Special Introductory Examination Phase I begins with registration starting February 1, 2022, with testing beginning on February 15, 2022, and ends after the first 100 candidates have tested.

This introductory phase registration period begins on February 1, 2022, and is open until April 30, 2022.  Testing windows will open on February 15, 2022, and phase I will be in progress until 100 candidates have been tested. The first 100 candidates who register will have a 60-day testing window.  This is to obtain the 100 candidates quickly so scoring can be done. (Those who register after phase I is completed will have a 90-day testing window).  The examinations for the phase I test period will be scored after 100 candidates have tested and standard-setting has been completed. 

Special Introductory Examination Phase II begins after phase I is completed and examination results have been sent.

This introductory phase will include registration after March 1, 2022, through April 30, 2022, followed by a 90-day testing window.  Testing during phase II must occur during the 90-day time frame. Any candidate who registers after April 30, 2022, will not be part of the phase II trial and will be put into the open testing window with an eligibility window starting on or after May 1, 2021. During phase II testing for a second form of the exam will be completed.  The analysis of this phase will be completed after 100 candidates have been tested.

Those who participate in the Special Introductory Examination Phases will be eligible for NCC's Second Chance Free promotion. This promotion is offered due to the delay in providing results during the testing process. If you are not successful on your first attempt, you will be eligible to reapply after 90 days and your fee for the second attempt will be waived. Note: you must complete the application process a second time to demonstrate continued compliance with all eligibility requirements. You must also test within the first eligibility window provided to you. The fee will only be waived if you apply for the same certification.

Regular registration will begin on May 1, 2022 

After The Special Introductory Examination Phases, I and II are completed, NCC will offer regular registration with 90-day testing windows which will begin on May 1,  2022. There will be no "second chance free" promotion once the test and scoring delay period has ended. The second chance free promotion based on registration ends on April 30, 2022.


Whenever a new exam is offered, all questions used have no statistical history by virtue of the fact the exam has never been given before. In order to gather the vital statistical information on the item and total examination performance to make valid psychometric judgments on pass/fail determinations, statistics from actual test takers must be ascertained. A pass/fail status cannot be reported upon the completion of your examination until the overall exam performance data is collected and analyzed from all test takers who test during your same testing window. 

Since the test questions and exam have no psychometric (statistical) history, results from all test-takers in the Special Introductory testing phases will be analyzed for psychometric soundness and performance prior to scoring.  Any question that does not meet the appropriate psychometric standards will be deleted from scoring and will not count toward or detract from an individual’s score.  This gives those who take the first test the advantage of the “benefit of the doubt” in determining pass/fail status.

All scores are held until all candidates who registered during Special Introductory Examination Phase I have been tested. After statistical analysis and review are completed, results will be mailed to all those who took the test during this introductory phase. These are expected to occur sometime in May of 2022. Pass/Fail results are mailed and will also be posted to online accounts. After the introductory phase, this will occur within 15 days of testing for those who passed. You will be sent updates on the expected release dates for the pass/fail results during the introductory period.

Those in Special Introduction Examination Phase II will test after phase I is completed. The exam results will be held until there are enough candidates who have tested to statistically analyze the examination to ensure both difficulties of the form and pass/fail are in line with the first form of the exam. Scoring for Phase II of the exam is anticipated to be available in June of 2022.

Currently, with the pandemic and the unknown path of new COVID19 variants, testing at test centers may be halted or slowed and results could be further delayed. The ability to score the exams is based on the number of test-takers.  You will be sent updates on the expected release dates for the pass/fail results. The exam results will be held until there are enough candidates who have tested to statistically analyze the examination to ensure both difficulties of the form and pass/fail are in line with the first form of the exam.

NCC is providing a “Second Chance Free” opportunity for those who register for the IAP exam during the Special Introductory Phases of testing. There is no cost for the second registration for those who qualify. Those who participated in the Special Introductory phases, who did not pass, will be allowed to take the test a second time for FREE if they still meet eligibility requirements. Details can be found below.


Special introductory registration that provides a SECOND CHANCE Promotion ends on April 30, 2022, at 11:59 PM CST. Anyone registering for the IAP Examination during this window must also test during their initial eligibility window to receive the second chance free. For those who registered during the Second Chance Free promotion time frame, if you are unsuccessful in achieving certification on your first examination attempt, you can apply to retake the same NCC core certification examination (IAP) for a second attempt at certification for free.   You have one year from the date you failed the exam to register. You will be able to reapply by logging in to your account, meeting eligibility, and registering again after 90-days for the same exam (IAP). Please note, there is a 90-day waiting period from the first examination attempt before you can register for your second attempt.

  • Offer applies to certification registrations submitted and approved between February 1-April 30, 2022, and taken during the initial eligibility window provided for testing. 
  • A testing date can be changed following testing guidelines for changing the test date but must remain within the initial eligibility window to qualify for the second chance free promotion. This can be done within the candidate's account from the "scheduling" link.
  • Applies to NCC new core certification only (RNC-IAP)
  • Candidates must wait 90 days from the date they took the exam for all computer tests. Testing is only at computer test centers.
  • Candidates must submit another application and re-establish eligibility to register.
  • Candidates who wish to claim this offer must submit their 2nd chance application within one year of the day the first exam was taken. After that time, the offer will no longer be valid. 
  • The promotion is not transferable to other certifications or to other persons.
  • The exam can only be taken twice in a calendar year.
  • If an applicant files earlier than 90-days from the failed test date, the application will be denied.
  • If you are asked for payment, you should abandon the registration and contact NCC to verify eligibility.  Those eligible for the second chance free promotion should not be asked for payment. You must be logged in to the NCC website when you register.  Candidates who register again and pay a registration fee will not receive a refund. Please see the information on the amount of refund with withdrawals.
  • All NCC policies and procedures apply

TESTING OVERVIEW for Phase I and II Testing

Once determined eligible for the IAP exam you will receive an eligibility notification by email and in your account with instructions on how to make your computer test center appointment.  The 60 -day testing window for phase I begins February 15. For those who register in February, the window is only 60 days. Once determined eligible for Phase II the testing window is 90-days.  There is a change fee and form required to change your testing dates. A change in the eligibility window will void the second chance free offer.  Please register knowing you can test within the next 60 to 90 days.

The examinations will be delivered via computer at one of the over 250 AMP/PSI Assessment Centers located throughout the United States. Exams will be administered by appointment only Monday through Saturday at 9:00 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. PSI/AMP Assessment Centers are typically located in H&R Block offices. Call PSI at1-833-256-1426 for more information. To find open sites near you click "PSI Test Centers" beginning on February 1, 2022.  The core IAP exam is 3 hours long. Please review the NCC Guide to Testing Methods.  Please note this new exam is NOT offered by Live Remote Proctoring. Also, test centers may be closed in certain areas of the county.  Please ensure your test center is open before registering for the exam. 

The examination fee is $325 which includes a non-refundable $50 application fee submission cost. Individuals can submit a registration application online at any time

  • The examination fee must be paid when submitting the application.
  • There is a $30 reprocessing fee for applications submitted with missing incomplete or incorrect information. Make sure your license upload includes the expiration date. The majority of nursing licenses can be obtained at Helpful directions for using Nursys: GUIDE TO NURSYS
  • After an exam is purchased, there is a 6-hour window to cancel the order.  The order can be canceled by logging into the account and clicking on "Cancel Application" found under the new certification. Only you can cancel the application and you must meet the 6-hour window. 
  • After 6 hours, an online Exam Withdrawal Request is required for a partial refund.
  • All applications must be submitted online at the NCC website.
  • All applications are reviewed for eligibility
  • It can take up to two weeks to determine eligibility
  • Once the application is approved, you will be emailed an eligibility letter that will indicate a 60 or 90-day eligibility window in which to schedule and take your examination. You have the first 30 days to set up a test appointment with our testing vendor and take the exam. The sooner you sign up to take the exam during the introductory examination phase, the sooner the tests can be reviewed and scored.
  • Payment can be made by credit card or e-check.
  • Please review the examination registration catalogs. The examination registration catalog lists additional fees that may apply. 

Inpatient Antepartum Nursing Examination (RNC-IAP)
ELIGIBILITY: Core examination leading to RNC-IAP certification
Complete details can be found at EXAM REGISTRATION CATALOG and CANDIDATE GUIDE

  • Current active/unencumbered licensure as an RN in the U.S. or Canada.
  • 24 months specialty experience as a U.S. or Canadian RN comprised of a minimum of 2000 hours (this must have occurred sometime in your career). Specialty experience can be comprised of direct patient care, education, administration, or research.
  • Employment in the specialty sometime in the last 24 months.
  • Both practice time and hours must be met. This is not an either/or criterion.
  • See details in the Exam Registration Catalog.

PURPOSE: The purpose of the Inpatient Antepartum Nursing Certification is to provide a competency-based examination that tests specialty knowledge and the application of that knowledge for, licensed registered nurses in the US and Canada with a minimum of two years of specialty experience in providing a coordinated approach to care, continued risk assessment and psychosocial support to hospitalized pregnant women during the antepartum period.

CREDENTIAL: All those who successfully complete the Inpatient Antepartum Nursing certification examination will be entitled to use the credential RNC-IAP. To learn more about this exam and to register, click here.


IAP Registration Opens February 1, 2022