Remarks Delivered by AACN President Kathleen Ann Long
at the Business Meeting on Monday, October 27, 2003
I. Brief History
In 1999, nurse educators were faced with the fifth consecutive year of declining enrollments in baccalaureate nursing programs. At the same time, the Institute of Medicine released its landmark report, To Err is Human: Building a Safer Health System, which called on health care systems to reorient their efforts to reduce medical errors and improve patient safety. In this climate, the AACN Board of Directors identified some primary concerns related to care delivery.
Board of Directors Concerns
- In general, we have not succeeded in differentiating practice of RNs with different educational preparation.
- In general, numerous reports have shown that care provided to patients is not high quality (series of reports, IOM, AHA, JCAHO, RWJ and our own experiences as patients or family members of patients). Every general trend has exceptions and, in some places, excellent patient care is available.
- The knowledge base for nurses has increased dramatically (e.g., genetics, pharmacology) and delivery system is much more complex.
Based on these 3 complex issues, the AACN Board of Directors was compelled to take action and formed the Task Force on Education and Regulation for Professional Nursing Practice #1 (TFER #1).
Task Force on Education and Regulation for Professional Nursing Practice #1 - Seeking Answers
- The task force developed new educational models, including a "New Nurse" graduate, educated beyond a 4-year baccalaureate program, with a new license and legal scope of practice.
- After consultation with nurse executives, regulators and others, TFER #1 determined that a new role was needed in order to differentiate scope of practice and create a new license.
- NCSBN declined to create a separate license for associate and baccalaureate degree graduates since entry-level roles are not well differentiated across the board.
Task Force on Education and Regulation for Professional Nursing Practice #2 - Moving Forward
In July 2002, the AACN Board created the TFER #2 task force to continue the work begun by TFER #1.
- TFER #2 members focused on what nurse competencies are needed in current and future health care system to improve patient care.
- The task force examined what the "New Nurse" role might look like. This work resulted in the publication of the draft white paper on The Role of the Clinical Nurse Leader in May 2003.
- Representatives from education and practice were invited to participate in a discussion of the new nursing role at AACN's Fall Semiannual Meeting in October 2003 and at other stakeholder meetings.
II. Follow-up Activities from the October 2003 Meeting
The AACN Board of Directors appreciates the valuable input received at the October 2003 pre-conference and will use this information as it takes these next steps:
- Transcribe meeting tapes and summarize notes.
- Locate an external reviewer to help identify themes and conclusions from the meeting (a report will go to all members).
- Develop one-page talking points papers on key issues such as licensure and the fit of new education approaches with existing ones (e.g., fit with practice doctorate).
- Seek external funding to support pilot projects for schools and practice partners that wish to participate in new models.
- Move forward with developing 1, 2 or maybe 3 education models partnered with practice (participants in October 2003 meeting were asked to indicate their preferred model).
- Be sure that evaluation of patient outcomes is built into each model.
- Encourage the placement of articles in the Journal of Professional Nursing which explore issues related to the new nurse and foster regional forums to engage and inform more nurses, nurse administrators and educators in the process.
- Plan a follow-up conference in March 2004 with clear direction for the roll out of the pilot programs.
We hope that many schools and practice settings eager to move forward will wait until March 2004 or be willing to adapt their approach to one of the models that is adopted at that time. This will allow for adequate evaluation of new education and practice approaches and avoid the "N of 1" phenomena.
Last Updated February 2008
March 17, 2017 has been designated as Certified CNL Day (due to March 19th falling on a Sunday).
2017 CNL Research Symposium, CNL Summit and Master’s Education Conference held February 22-25, 2017 in Atlanta, GA.
CNC celebrates 10 years of offering the CNL Certification ExaminationSM and also the establishment of the Commission on Nurse Certification. New CNC logo unveiled.
CNC launches www.discoverCNLs.org as a site geared to Nurse Executives and Healthcare Facilities to learn about the value of the certified Clinical Nurse LeaderSM.
2017 CNL Visionary Leader, CNL Vanguard Award and CNL Educator Vanguard Award winners announced.
The Item Writers Committee begins reviewing exam items and writing new items for the new CNL Certification ExaminationSM.
CNC released the updated CNL Exam Blueprint/CNL Exam Content Outline to be used on exams administered beginning April 2017.
The CNL Job Analysis Survey is released to all CNC constituents.
CNC along with Schroeder Measurement Technologies, Inc. begin the CNL Job Analysis process April 11-12, 2016 in Clearwater, Florida. The CNCBOC approved 12 CNLs as members of the Job Analysis Committee. A new CNL exam based on the updated Exam Content Outline will be administered in Spring 2017.
March 19, 2016 has been designated as Certified CNL Day.
2016 CNL Research Symposium and CNL Summit held January 14-16, 2016 in Long Beach, CA.
Yenny Caceres hired as CNC’s new Certification Coordinator.
Healthcare providers from Kyoto University in Japan (in collaboration with Saint Anthony Medical Center in Rockford, IL) visit Mercy Health Saint Mary's to learn about the CNL skillset. Drs. Dana Dermody, Asako Katsumata of Saint Anthony Medical Center and Kazuko Nin have been instrumental in developing this initiative http://withinsaintmarys.com/international-health-careproviders-learn-about-integrated-cnl-role/.
March 19, 2015 has been designated as Certified CNL Day. Certified CNL Day spreads awareness to recognize our certified Clinical Nurse Leaders and provide employers with an opportunity to extend their appreciation to their certified CNL staff.
2015 CNL Research Symposium and CNL Summit held January 22-24, 2015 in Orlando, FL.
Shantal Hall hired as CNC’s new Certification Director.
AACN’s online CNL Certification Exam Review Course made available. Developed by practicingCNLs and academicians, the course is offered in 12 modules and may be used by individuals preparing for CNL certification or by other healthcare professionals seeking contact hours.
March 19, 2014 has been designated as Certified CNL Day.
CNC is on the list of certifying organizations promoting the Certified Nurses Are Everywhere PSA National Campaign http://certifiednurses.org/.
CNL Certification Program is accredited by the National Commission for Certifying Agencies.
CNC launched the Clinical Nurse Leader Channel on YouTube www.youtube.com/clinicalnurseleader.
The revised multiple choice CNL certification exam based upon the CNL job analysis study launched.
CNC in conjunction with the Clinical Nurse Leader Association offered the first CNL Research Symposium.
AACN website updated to include all CNL certification and CNL implementation resources.
The CNL Community, an online discussion board for CNL students, CNL graduates, and practicing CNLs, is launched and hosted by CNC and AACN.
The CNL job analysis study is completed by Schroeder Measurement Technologies, Inc. and CNC’s Job Analysis Committee.
CNC’s new testing vendor, Schroeder Measurement Technologies, Inc., administers certification exam.
CNC launches online discussion board for CNL faculty and education partners on http://www.nurseslounge.com/lounges/profile/16380/clinical-nurse-leader.
CNC launched the CNL Wall of Fame and the CNL Job Bank.
CNC launched the CNL Self-Assessment Exam.
CNC adopted first strategic plan (FY2010-2013).
Recertification guidelines and application made available online.
New certification exam administered.
CNC Board of Commissioners agreed to extend faculty eligibility waiver to December 31, 2012.
CNL Directory made available online.
AACN Board of Directors approved Memorandum of Understanding with CNC.
CNC Board of Commissioners adopted CNC Bylaws. Online application launched. CNL lapel pin available (other merchandise followed to create an online store). CNL certification presence established on AACN website.
Eligibility waiver for individuals functioning in CNL expired; waiver for faculty continued.
AACN Board of Directors approved changing CNL Certification Advisory Board to CNC and CNC Board of Commissioners. First CNC Board of Commissioners’ officers elected. CNC Board of Commissioners approved and adopted CNL Standards of Conduct. First issue of The CNL Bulletin, an online newsletter of the AACN and CNC. CNC logo approved by CNC Board of
First meeting of CNL Certification Advisory Board (via conference call). CNL Certification Advisory Board approved of the name change to Commission on Nurse Certification (CNC) and representatives serving as Board of Commissioners. AACN and CNC adopted CNL logo.
“CNL” became a registered trademark of AACN.
AACN Board of Directors approved CNL Certification Advisory Board composition and first appointments.
AACN’s Board of Directors approved the revised white paper on The Education and Role of the Clinical Nurse Leader.
Tracy Lofty, MSA, CAE hired as Certification Director.
CNL Certification Exam officially launched.
AACN appointed CNL Steering Committee charged with advancing the CNL skillset and measuring the CNL’s impact on patient care outcomes.
November 2006/January 2007
Certification exam was piloted. The pilot CNL Certification Examination was administered between November 27, 2006 and January 17, 2007. One hundred twenty-three individuals at twelve schools sat for the examination.
Passing cut score adjusted by Exam Committee in conjunction with Applied Measurement Professionals, Inc. based upon the pilot exam scores.
AACN launched online CNL discussions groups for CNL partners and for CNL students.
Exam Committee rated items using Angoff technique in collaboration with Applied Measurement Professionals, Inc.
AACN contracted with Applied Measurement Professionals, Inc. for test development, effective April 2006.
AACN Board of Directors approved initial budget for development of a computer-based exam.
AACN’s ITF sponsored CNL Implementation Conference for nurse educators and practice partners committed to advancing the CNL initiative. At this meeting, education-practice models and curriculum were discussed and finalized and an implementation timeline was developed. Representatives from 79 schools of nursing and 136 practice organizations participated.
AACN sent a Request for Proposal (RFP) to all AACN member schools to commit to the CNL initiative by developing a master’s-level CNL curriculum.
AACN’s Implementation Task Force (ITF) is appointed to oversee development of CNL.
Special meeting of AACN Board of Directors was conducted. Motions passed by AACN Board of Directors included:
- AACN Board of Directors accepting the draft white paper on The Role of the Clinical Nurse Leader, May 2003.
- AACN continuing to provide leadership and invest resources in the creation and evaluation of a new model, or models, or nursing practice and nursing education at the master’s degree in nursing level that results in a new nursing professional (CNL).
- The model(s) to be created and evaluated will result in a new nurse professional for advanced generalist practice, as described in the CNL paper, who is prepared at the master’s level
- The AACN Board approving models as a starting point for model development.
- AACN assuming leadership and engaging appropriate stakeholders to ensure development of a new legal scope of practice and credential for the new nurse professional as described in the CNL working paper.
Representatives from education and practice met to discuss the CNL’s impact on care delivery models and educational programs. The meeting was held prior to AACN’s Fall Semiannual Meeting.
AACN’s Implementation Task Force (ITF) is appointed to oversee development of CNL.
AACN’s Board of Directors created TFERII to identify competencies needed to improve patient care outcomes.
AACN’s Board of Directors formed the Task Force on Education and Regulation for Professional Nursing Practice (TFER). TFER identified the need for a new nurse skillset.