CEN Practice Test

Table of Contents

Studying to become a Certified Emergency Nurse? A CEN practice test is a great way to prepare for the exam.

To pass the CEN exam you will need to demonstrate an understanding of 10 different domains. Use CEN test questions to better understand those difficult concepts.

Summary: Use the free CEN practice questions below to start preparing for your test.

CEN Practice Test

Practice Test #1Quizlet
Practice Test #2Quizlet
Official CEN Sample QuestionsBoard of Certification for Emergency Nursing (BCEN)

What is the CEN Exam?

The Board of Certification for Emergency Nursing (BCEN) requires individuals who are seeking a CEN certificate to take an exam.

The CEN exam is for those interested in emergency nursing and candidates must hold a current Registered Nurse license or an equivalent certificate.

While not required, the BCEN recommends candidates have at least 2 years of experience in emergency departments.

CEN Exam Outline

The BCEN breaks up the exam into 10 domains. 10 domains may come off as challenging, but using CEN practice tests will help you be better prepared.

Fast Facts:

  • Number of Questions: 175 Total. Only 150 are Scored
  • Question Types: Multiple-Choice
  • Time Limit: 3 Hours

The 10 specific domains tested on the CEN exam are:

  1. Cardiovascular Emergencies (19 Scored Questions)
  2. Respiratory Emergencies (18 Scored Questions)
  3. Neurological Emergencies (18 Scored Questions)
  4. Gastrointestinal, Genitourinary, Gynecology, and Obstetrical (18 Scored Questions)
  5. Mental Health Emergencies (11 Scored Questions)
  6. Medical Emergencies (14 Scored Questions)
  7. Musculoskeletal and Wound Emergencies (13 Scored Questions)
  8. Maxillofacial and Ocular Emergencies (11 Scored Questions)
  9. Environment and Toxicology Emergencies, and Communicable Diseases (14 Scored Questions)
  10. Professional Issues (14 Scored Questions)

If you want to look more in depth on what each domain covers, here is the official BCEN outline.

CEN Exam Overview

Scoring of the CEN Exam

There are a total of 175 questions on the CEN exam, but 25 of those questions are unscored. The unscored questions are sprinkled randomly across the exam and are not marked. CEN practice exams will follow the same format as the exam.

As noted above, each of the 10 domains has a certain number of scored questions, meaning all the questions in a domain are not scored, but the majority of them are.

The purpose of these unscored questions is for the BCEN to evaluate questions to use in future CEN examinations.

To pass the exam, you will need a score of at least 106 out of 150.

Registration for the CEN Exam

Registering for the exam can be confusing. Here are the quick facts:

  • Price: If you are an Emergency Nurses Association (ENA) member then it costs $230 dollars. If you are not a member then it costs $360 dollars.
  • Steps to Take:
    1. You must first hold a current Registered Nurse license or an equivalent certificate.
    2. You then must request an application from the BCEN. This is done through the official BCEN website.
    3. BCEN will then approve your application and send you a handbook and an authorization letter within 4 weeks of submitting your application.
    4. Once you have received your materials from the BCEN, you are eligible to schedule your exam. To schedule your exam, call the number that they provide in the handbook.
    5. Once receiving your letter you have 90 days to schedule your exam.

What to Expect on Test Day

You may take your exam either online or in-person. Here is what to expect for both options:

In-Person: Arrive 30 minutes before your exam and bring a government issued ID. They will then take a picture of you and you will accept the rules and regulations of the exam. They will then take you to a storage area where you will store items such as:

  • Phone
  • Bags (purse, handbag, etc)
  • Accessories (hats, gloves, sunglasses, etc)
  • Notes

If you bring any of these items into the exam you will be asked to leave and as a result and fail the exam.

Online: Taking the exam online is very similar. You must arrive at your Live Remote Proctoring (LRP) meeting 30 minutes before and present a government issued ID to your proctor. Your proctor will then ask you to scan your surroundings.

You may not have any objects that you would not be allowed to have in person. Once your proctor is satisfied with your surroundings you will take your exam.


There are 175 questions on the test, but 25 of those questions do not count towards your score.

Yes. You have 3 hours to take your CEN exam.

Yes you can. Doing so is very similar to taking the test in person. When taking the test online you will have a Live Remote Proctor (LRP) who will behave similarly to an in-person proctor.

Yes. To pass the exam you must answer at least 106 questions correctly out of 150.

The CEN exam tends to be difficult. There are many topics and subjects covered across the 10 different domains.Using free CEN practice questions will help you become best prepared for the exam.

The fee for the CEN exam is $230 if you are an ENA member. If you are not an ENA member, the exam costs $360.

Jan Olson
Dr. Jan Olson has her Bachelor's degree in nursing, Master's degree in nursing, and Doctorate in nursing.