The CNOR exam is the certification test for perioperative nurses (surgical nursing) who take care of patients before, during, and after surgery. CNOR certification is provided by the Compentency and Credentialing Institute (CCI).
Before you can take the test, you must be currently licensed as a registered nurse (RN) in the jurisdiction where you practice perioperative nursing. You may be either a full-time or part-time surgical nurse at the time you apply for certification. However, you must have a total of 2 years and 2400 hours of practice as a perioperative nurse. This includes any of the following: administration, research, teaching, or working as a general staff member.
After qualifying to take the exam, CCI states that most nurses take a good 2 to 3 months to prepare for the CNOR. It has a multitude of resources for test preparation that can be purchased at the CCI website. Some are also free. For example, the “CNOR Certification and Recertification Candidate Handbook” has an exam content outline and CNOR practice questions. These are certainly not enough by themselves, however, to pass the certification test. You should use them only as guides for the topics to study or a self-assessment tool in the case of practice questions found in the handbook.
One way to study for this surgical nurse exam is to use the CCI self-assessment tool. It gives you an idea of whether you qualify for the exam and your likely level of knowledge of things tested on the CNOR test. But then you will quickly need to move on to the primary study materials.
The main textbook for content appearing on this certification test is the 2011 Perioperative Standards and Recommended Practices. This is published by the Association of Perioperative Registered Nurses. It retails for $200 at the standard price and $100 for Association members. Go to the page below to see the order form.
On that page, you will see multiple other options for preparing for the CNOR exam. For example, there is a study guide based off the main text that is only $125 for the standard price. This is a big savings for those who are not members of the Association. There are also specific CNOR study guides that may streamline your preparation. The CNOR Study Set 2011 is $300 and $150 for members. There are other expensive options that include CD-ROM packages and so forth. But if you just get the main text plus the CNOR Study Set, you should be able to learn the material necessary to pass the test.
Visit the “CNOR Exam Preparation Resources” page on the Competency and Credentialing Institute website to get more options for studying for this surgical nursing exam.
CCI: CNOR Certification and Recertification Candidate Handbook
Association of Perioperative Registered Nurses: 2011 Perioperative Standards and Recommended Practices
CCI: CNOR Exam Preparation Resources