The American Holistic Nurses Credentialing Corporation (AHNCC) is dedicated to Credentialing Programs framed by the Holistic Paradigm, and as such, AHNCC has products that it offers the public. Certification Programs are designed to serve as validation that those who have successfully completed the certification examination have the knowledge, skills, and attitudes essential to Holistic Nursing roles and practice. Examination development requires an extensive, rigorous, methodical process to ensure that all AHNCC tests are reliable, demonstrate content and construct validity, and are psychometrically sound and legally defensible.

AHNCC endeavors to develop examinations free from bias due to characteristics that have no bearing on the competencies being measured. AHNCC strives to ensure that such characteristics as gender, ethnicity, race, socioeconomic status, age, and any other concerns unrelated to the ability to apply the required competencies will not create differences in candidate scores. AHNCC strives to administer programs in accordance with standards established by the National Council on Measurement in Education, the American Educational Research Association, the American Psychological Association, the US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, and with full consideration of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Americans with Disabilities Act. Examinations, are revised as needed, to be in compliance with changes in the Standards for Educational and Psychological Testing or any Federal requirements.

The Examination Development Process includes the following steps:

  • A continuous ongoing literature review of all relevant literature;
  • A  focused, Needs Assessment when new emerging roles are discovered;
  • A liaison, if needed, with experts in the emerging role;
  • Listing of identified practice competencies;
  • Expert Panel 1 review for Omission/Commission/Clarity;
  • Expert Panel 2 review for Omission/Commission/Clarity/Redundancy (to review revised competencies from Expert panel 1);
  • Expert Review Committee to review /discuss issues raised by Expert Panel 2;
  • Editorial Review of Competencies by Professional Testing Corporation (PTC);
  • Creation of Survey: Role-Delineation Study (RDS);
  • Beta testing of RDS;
  • Revisions of RDS survey as indicated by expert nurses;
  • RDS administration;
  • Data Analysis of RDS;
  • RDS Report;
  • Examination Blueprint revised as necessary;
  • Item Writing;
  • Item Review;
  • Examination Development;
  • Examination Administration;
  • Evaluation of Examination Results.

Additional Documents

To read in more detail about the overall rigorous process used to develop AHNCC examinations, click here to access the AHNNC Certification Program Development Process document.

To review Developmental processes of the HN and NC Certification Programs, click here to access the Development by Year Literature and Examination document.

To review the Phases of the RDS Processes and Expert Panel, click here to access the RDS Processes and Expert Reviewers document.

To review the Mapping of the Holistic Nursing Competencies by AHNA Standards, click here to access the Mapping of Competencies by Standards and Core Values document.

To review the Holistic Nursing 2012 RDS Report and Appendices, click here to access the Holistic Nursing Role-Delineation Study, and the Holistic Nursing Role-Delineation Appendices documents.

To review the Nurse Coach 2012 RDS Report and Appendices, click here to access the Nurse Coach Role-Delineation Study and the Nurse Coach Role-Delineation Appendices documents.