Continuing Education for Nurse Administrators
Learning in the nursing field does not stop at graduation. Things change fast in health care administration and nursing at large and registered nurses must get acquainted with the changes as they occur.
On the other hand, nurse executives formerly nurse administrators may wish to acquire more knowledge in nursing issues that are not necessarily provided in the formal school curriculum, and continuing education comes in handy.
But above all, each state’s Board of Nursing requires that every certified nurse administrators renew their licenses and certificate after a given period of time. Under this provision comes the first importance of continuing education needs for nurses. Continuing education is therefore a condition that every nurse who wish to retain their license current and valid must meet.
Continuing Education for License Renewal vs. Recertification
It is quite common to confuse the two purposes of continuing education. In most cases, nursing administration continuing education courses may be taken along with other nursing CEs to fulfill the requirement of a state board of nursing registered nurses license renewal.
On the other hand, the exclusive nursing administrative CEs are required by those who wish to become nationally certified nurse executives. That larger and wider scope is the recertification requirements and is what is discussed in great detail in this section
Nurse Executives Continuing Education General Pointers
A registered nurse may apply for certification to become a nurse executive by earning a Master of science nurse executive degree. BSN graduate Registered Nurses may also become certified administrators if they can show proof of 5 years work experience in mid-level administration posts equivalent to 24 hours full time service.
There are quite a number of variations between states in the licenses renewal cycle; a period in which a RN must cover a given amount of continuing education needs. In addition, the renewal periods for which a nurse executive certificate remains valid may also vary from state to state. Even more, some states board of nursing may not require a nurse executive to complete continuing education for purposes of license renewal. This is especially so if they hold a master of science in nursing administration degree and a national .Instead, they are required to retain their National Certificates by retaking the national certification exams from the American Nurses Credentialing Center.
CE Requirements for Nurse Administrators License Renewal
Generally, most states boards of nursing require 30 hours of continuing education in a renewal cycle of 2 with a few states having a 3-year cycle. The American Nurses Credentialing Center has numerous accredited providers of continuing education for nurse executives among other nursing disciplines. If you are planning to take your CE requirements, you must ensure the provider is accredited by the ANCC. CEs can be taken in form of annual conferences, workshops, face-to face courses, online CEs, seminars and webinars.
Students must keep note of the following criteria used by most boards of nursing and ANCC to determine the number of CE requirements covered in a given renewal cycle:
- 1 contact Hr=60 min
- 1 CME (Continuing Medical Education) =60 min or 1 contact hr
- 1 CEU (Continuing Education Unit)= 10 contact hrs
- 1 contact Hr=0.1 CEU
- 1 academic semester Hr= 15 contact hours
- 1 academic quarter Hr =12.5 contact Hrs
While sending your CE hours to the state board of nursing you must fill-out a form indicating the following items:
Exact title of the CE taken
The number of contact hours earned
Name of the provider
Date it was offered
If the CEs were taken from an online accredited provider, the CE certificates obtained must be printed and stored incase verification of the data is needed by ANCC during a random Audit. CEs taken from unaccredited providers may be rejected altogether.
Nurses Executive CEs for ANCC Recertification
ANCC is the national certifying body for nurse executives. To renewal a certificate, a registered nurse needs 30 hours taken in the last 5 years; which is the renewal cycle of the national certification.
ANCC Accredited Providers of Nurse Executive Continuing Education
To be on the safe side, it is paramount to ensure your provider of continuing education is accredited by the American Nurses Credentialing Center. There are numerous unaccredited online sites that purport to offer CE for nurses. These can be taken for purposes of individual learning but they may not be accepted for license renewal or recertification by ANCC. Among the accredited providers are universities, colleges, and independent providers. A few examples of independent providers include:
- American Nurses Association ( for which ANCC is a subsidiary)
- American Organization of Nurse Executives
- Gannet Education
- INTEGRIS Health
- CEU4U, Inc
Examples of CE’s Applicable for Nurse Administrators
Continuing education hours must be relevant to the field of nursing for which they are being taken. Examples of this offered by ANCC’s ANA include:
- Introduction to precepting
- Nursing quality measurement: Key concepts
- Developing delegation skills
- Power and Empowerment in nursing
- Precepting and communication
- From Bedside to Boardroom
- Reading and critiquing a research article