The Exam

The Certified Medical-Surgical Registered Nurse (CMSRN®) credential recognizes that the highest standards of medical-surgical nursing practice have been achieved. You can become certified by successfully completing the CMSRN examination which validates proficiency in medical-surgical nursing.

CMSRN Exam Details

Computer-Based Testing (CBT) exam format

  • 150 multiple choice questions: 130 scored and 20 unscored experimental questions.
  • Three hour exam.

Paper-and-Pencil exam format

  • 150 multiple choice questions: 130 scored and 20 unscored experimental questions.
  • Three hour exam.

Standard score of 95 (equal to approximately 71% correct) to pass for both exam formats. See Sample Questions.

CMSRN Exam Blueprint

View the exam blueprint, which is the framework for the exam.

CMSRN Exam Administration

MSNCB works with the testing company Center for Nursing Education and Testing (C-NET®) to offer the CMSRN certification examination. C-NET staff members have extensive experience in the development and administration of certification and licensure examinations for nurses.

C-NET offers computer-based testing through partnering with PSI Services, LLC.

CMSRN Accreditation

The CMSRN exam program has achieved the gold stamp of approval. After meeting rigorous standards, the CMSRN exam was granted accreditation by the Accreditation Board for Specialty Nursing Certification (ABSNC). Accreditation demonstrates that the CMSRN credential is based on a valid and reliable testing process. The CMSRN exam received its accreditation from ABSNC in January 2009 and was reaccredited in 2018.

The ABSNC promotes the highest quality of specialty nursing practice through the establishment of standards of professional specialty nursing certification. ABSNC accreditation is valid for 5 years.

For more information about ABSNC accreditation, visit www.absnc.org.