Board Exam Frequently Asked Questions

Where do I go to take the exam?

The exam is taken on either an individual basis, or in a group setting at a school that offers our Board Exam as their final examination.  Exams are taken online and are proctored by ProctorU. The exam fee of $300 includes proctoring via ProctorU.  

What is ProctorU?

ProctorU is a live online proctoring service available 24/7 that allows students to take exams from anywhere using a webcam and Internet connection. This service uses live proctors who monitor exams by observing the student (via webcam) and his/her computer screen in real time.


When can I take the exam?

You may take the exam at any time after your exam application has been processed and approved.  Please allow a minimum of four (4) weeks for the HNCB to process your application. In order to complete your application request, all documents must be received at least four (4) weeks prior to the date of your exam. This gives us time to review all of your documents and to establish your credentialing file. Exam applicants who do not allow the requested four (4) weeks may be required to reschedule the exam for a later date.

How much time is allotted to take the exam? Will there be a break?

You will have three (3) hours to complete the exam. There will be one five (5) minute bathroom break. If you have a medical need for a longer break, please provide advanced notice in the designated area on your exam application and one will be scheduled for you.

What is a passing grade?

An overall exam grade of 70% correct is required to pass the exam.

How long will it take to get exam results?

Exam results will be available within four (4) to six (6) weeks of exam completion. The HNCB will contact each exam candidate with the results of his/her exam via U.S. Mail.

Will I be given grades by exam domain so I know which areas I did well or poorly in?

Your exam results will indicate a “pass” or “fail” of the exam. Information on scores (overall domain percentage only) for specific domains is provided only when requested. Suggestions for additional education will be given upon request.

Can I retake the exam if I fail?

If you fail the exam, you may retest within six (6) months. If you fail two (2) times, you will be required to document additional education prior to taking the exam a third time. If you fail three (3) times, you will not be allowed to sit for the exam again. A re-test fee of $250 will apply for each re-test.

If I fail the exam, do I need to retake the entire exam or just the domains I failed?

You will need to retake the entire exam.

What title do I use after passing the exam?

Please continue to use the title you earned from your school of study. In addition, you may use "Board Certified in Holistic Nutrition®" or "BCHN®."  New graduates who have not yet provided evidence of earning 500 Contact Hours will use the title, "Board Certified in Holistic Nutrition® (Candidate)" or "BCHN® (Candidate)."

Always check your state laws to assure you are practicing legally. To prevent misusing the title, please check your state laws governing the practice of nutrition.

Do I need to renew my certification? What are the requirements for maintaining board certification?

You will not need to sit for the exam again. However, you will be required to document the following every two (2) years to renew and maintain your board certification:

  • Completion of thirty (30) continuing education units per two (2) year term.
  • Professional member in good standing with the NANP.