BCEN EDvantage

A certificate program to prepare for a career in the emergency department

No one can know what the future holds.

But you can be ready for it.


The only certainty about life in the ED … is that it’s never certain. Emergency nurses thrive in this always-changing, ever-dynamic environment. And when a crisis hits, emergency nurses are ready to respond —with care, with decisiveness and with adaptability.

Sound like your career goals? The BCEN EDvantage program is what you need to prepare for a future in the ED … even in an uncertain world. 

Give your career an advantage with BCEN EDvantage.

Get Started

“We want to invest in the future of emergency nursing. We understand the difficulties both new nurses and Emergency Departments face when going through the application/new hire process. Our goal in developing this program is to contribute to a strong emergency nursing workforce.”

– Janie Schumaker, BCEN Chief Executive Officer

Explore Educational Opportunities with BCEN’s Interactive Nurse Journey

No matter where you are in your nursing career, the road to certification and lifelong learning can be exciting and rewarding! Explore the path of a student nurse or new RN and learn about educational opportunities with BCEN’s interactive Nurse Journey.

Let’s take a journey together!


Road map illustration

As a soon-to-be graduate or recent RN, you’ve likely got the academic foundation and knowledge for a successful career. The BCEN EDvantage program is designed to supplement your education with authentic, in-depth learning and experience specific to the emergency department. Get up close and personal with the ins and outs of critical care, and set yourself apart from the rest of the crowd. Hiring managers, HR and team leaders want to see drive, motivation and passion — the BCEN EDvantage program shows them you’ve got what it takes.

Are you ready to set yourself apart from the crowd and elevate your chances of securing a career in the ED?


Nursing StudentsCurrent NursesGeneral Criteria
Must be no more than 12 months prior to graduation. Hold unrestricted US RN license or international equivalency. Nurses with a BCEN certification or In Process application are not eligible for the program.Complete and submit all program requirements within 6 months of paying the $75 application fee.

BCEN EDvantage Curriculum

The BCEN EDvantage program is a combination of in-person, online and written activities. All activities must be completed by the participant within 6 months of application, submitted and verified by BCEN. Upon completion, the participant will receive a certificate that can be added to LinkedIn, resumes, professional documents and more.

Items to Submit

  • In-Person Activities

    Complete one Stop the Bleed course.

      • If you can’t find a course in your area, consider organizing one.
      • Provide a certificate of completion. (Estimated 2 hours)

    Find a Course

    Participate in a community volunteer event where you have face to face interaction and the opportunity to apply fundamental nursing skills.

      • Examples include bike rodeo, health fair, teddy bear clinic. Provide documentation of your role in the event, date, time served and signature of the event coordinator. (Minimum 4 hours)

    Complete Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) course for healthcare providers from the American Heart Association.

      • Provide a copy of the card issued by the American Heart Association.  CPR card must be current, not expired.  (Estimated 4 hours)

    Find a Course

  • Online Activities

    Complete Emergency Nursing 101 from the BCEN Learn.

    • Provide certificate of completion. (Estimated 1 hour)

    Complete the Course

    Complete Your Career: From Interview to Certification from the BCEN Learn.

    • Provide certificate of completion. (Estimated 1 hour)

    Complete the Course

    Complete The Triage System: Pearls and Pitfalls from the BCEN Learn.

    • Provide certificate of completion. (Estimated 1 hour)

    Complete the Course

    Complete FEMA IS-100.C: Introduction to the Incident Command System, ICS 100

    • Provide certificate of completion and successful completion of the final exam. (Estimated 2 hours)

    Complete the Course

    Complete FEMA IS-700.B: An Introduction to the National Incident Management System

    • Provide certificate of completion and successful completion of the final exam. (Estimated 4 hours)

    Complete the Course

    Complete NIH Stroke Scale Training from the American Heart Association.

    • Provide certificate of completion. (Estimated 2 hours)

    Complete the Course


  • Writing

    Research and identify one significant operational issue that impacts the Emergency Department.

    • Write an essay identifying solutions to the operational issue (750-1,000 words).

    Complete an essay on specialty nursing certification.

    • Describe what specialty nursing certification is. Discuss your views on whether you believe specialty certification provides value to nurses, patients, and organizations. (500-750 words) 

    Complete a reflection essay related to a clinical experience that made a significant impact on you.

    • Describe the experience and why it was impactful.  (750-1,000 words)
  • Other

    Demonstrate membership and active participation in a professional membership association.

      • Provide your current membership card, meeting attendance dates and times and any roles you have had in the organization or with events sponsored by the organization. Examples include, but are not limited to, the National Student Nurses Association, The Emergency Nurses Association, and Society of Trauma Nurses.

    Provide a complete resume.

Get Started

Disclaimer: The program application fee is nonrefundable. All fees associated with certificate programs required for submission are the responsibility of the applicant. BCEN reserves the right to deny applications that do not meet selected criteria. BCEN makes no guarantees that completing the BCEN EDvantage Certificate Program will secure you a position in the Emergency Department.

Learn More

From graduation to certification. BCEN EDvantage and the Candidate’s Journey will take you through the steps to plot your course to success – no matter where you are on your journey.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • What is the total cost of this program?

    The Program Application fee is $75.

    Additional Fees:

    • The Emergency Severity Index (ESI) Adult and Pediatric Course from ENA costs $31.25 to register for (price subject to change).
    • The NIH Stroke Scale Training is $10 if you are not a member of the American Heart Association. All other requirements incur no charge.

    Note: All 3 courses from BCEN Learn are included in the program application fee.

  • What makes BCEN EDvantage the smart choice for up-and-coming nurses?

    Applying to an ED job can be competitive. When the hospital is looking at your application, what sets you apart from the others? Having a certificate from BCEN gives you a leg-up on the competition and better prepares you for a career in the ED.

    Additionally, BCEN EDvantage sets you up for certified success by exposing you to the information and knowledge you’ll need to someday pursue board certification from BCEN.

  • What are the benefits of completing the program?

    The value of finishing the BCEN EDvantage program is the boost it gives you in applying for jobs in the emergency department with some extra knowledge and skills under your belt. By completing this program, you’ll gain insight into the industry and confidence in your own abilities. In addition to these intangible benefits, there are other advantages to the program. Upon completion, you’ll receive: 

      • An authentic certificate showing the date you completed the program, 
      • A digital badge to share with future employers highlighting the accomplishments of this program, 
      • A professional portfolio to present at interviews.
  • How long does the program take to complete?

    We recommend you start this program several months before you begin your interviewing process. Ideally, this will be a complete portfolio to present at your interview. The estimated hours each activity will take to complete is listed in line with the activity’s description. Depending on your level of current activity and free time, the program can take anywhere between one and three months to complete. Once you pay the application fee, you have 6 months to submit all the required materials.

  • Why did you create this program?

    In 2019, we partnered with HumRRo to perform research on the emergency nursing workforce. During this research, we discovered many current nurses believe new nurses need to be better prepared for the real Emergency Department (ED) experience. ED nurses have a fast-paced, high-stress job that requires preparation and knowledge. Additionally, we have found there is a high volume of applicants for very few available positions. We want to push new nurses to be as prepared as possible, and for those prepared nurses to have the best chance at obtaining their dream job in the ED.

  • What if I completed or opened an application before September 15, 2021?

    On September 15, 2021, the BCEN EDvantage certificate program underwent some changes.

    Two BCEN Learn courses were added to the curriculum:

    • Your Career: From Interview to Certification
    • The Triage System: Pearls and Pitfalls

    The Emergency Severity Index (ESI) Adult and Pediatric Course is no longer required.

About BCEN

The Board of Certification for Emergency Nursing (BCEN®) is an independent, not-for-profit organization that develops robust certification programs for emergency, transport and trauma nurses. One of our main goals is to empower and support nurses across the emergency spectrum.