Self-Assessment Exam

The Self-Assessment Exam (SAE) is a 40-question, online diagnostic tool that parallels the content and level of difficulty of the CNL Certification Exam. The SAE is designed for students, program directors, CNL candidates, and CNL certificants.

CNL Self-Assessment Exam User Manual
The User Manual has been developed to assist with SAE registration. Please contact ISO Quality Testing, Inc. at 866-773-1114 with any questions.

After you have ordered the SAE, you will receive a confirmation with login information and instructions within one hour. Cost: $50 per order.

SAE Evaluation
Please complete the evaluation following completion of the SAE.

The Clinical Nurse Leader (CNL) Self-Assessment Examination (SAE), provided by the Commission on Nurse Certification (CNC), was developed by practicing CNLs and academicians in conjunction with Schroeder Measurement Technologies, Inc. (SMT). The 40-question online SAE is a self-paced tool designed to familiarize you with the CNL Certification Examination - the SAE parallels the content and difficulty of the CNL Certification Examination and reflects the format of the multiple choice items. The SAE is not a review course and is not intended to serve as a study course - it should be regarded as a diagnostic tool to assess strengths and weaknesses. Therefore, the SAE does not guarantee successful completion of the CNL Certification Examination.

The SAE may be used by students, program directors, faculty, CNL candidates, and CNL certificants:

  • Students may use the SAE as an additional assessment tool before completion of a CNL educational program (consultation with the program director is recommended).
  • Program directors and faculty of CNL education programs may use the SAE to incorporate into the CNL curriculum and to enhance learning experiences.
  • CNL candidates may use the SAE to evaluate their knowledge before taking the CNL Certification Examination.
  • CNL certificants may use the SAE to see if they are remaining current with the profession.

CNC encourages you to promote this online tool to your students and to incorporate it into the CNL education program. As a program director, discuss SAE results with your students if they seek consultation. This is an excellent opportunity for you to further mentor your students and to modify the curriculum as necessary.

The SAE will be available online for a period of 60 days from the date the order is placed. The SAE offers a score report by content area and a feedback report which indicates items answered correctly or incorrectly. In addition, the feedback report provides detailed explanations for each test item, describing the rationale behind the correct response and an explanation of why the wrong answers were not the best from among those provided. Please note that these exams can be taken only once per purchase; however, you do not have to complete the entire exam in one sitting. Options within the exam allow you to exit and return to the exam at a later time. Once you choose to finish and exit the exam, you cannot return. The cost of the SAE is $50 per individual.

For additional information regarding the CNL Certification Program, refer to the CNL Certification Guide. The handbook explains the format of the multiple choice items (recall, application, analysis) and simulation items (information gathering and decision making), includes the exam content outline, provides a worksheet for identifying strengths and weaknesses, and lists recommended study resources and tips on preparing for the exam. 

“The CNL Certification Program is governed by the Commission on Nurse Certification (CNC), the autonomous certifying arm of the American Association of Colleges of Nursing. The CNC Board of Commissioners and CNC staff are not involved in the development of any preparatory resource, and no preparatory resource is endorsed by the CNC nor is a prerequisite to earn the CNL certification. The CNC and its staff is solely responsible for the policies and administration of the CNL Certification Program. Learn more about CNL certification.”