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PCCN® Exam Review

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Course Description

This course is designed for those nurses working in the Progressive Care Unit who wish to take the PCCN Examination offered by AACN. The Progressive Care Area is defined as any unit referred to as: Intermediate Care, Direct Observation, Step-down, Telemetry Units or Transitional Care. The course will focus on core concepts defined by AACN that are essential for caring for this diverse population of adult patients.

Program Learning Outcomes

This program prepares the learner to:

  • Describe the PCCN Exam, test plan and the practice requirements to sit for the exam.
  • Construct a study plan for the exam based on understanding the blueprint and domains of practice covered.
  • Identify common mistakes and pitfalls that are made during studying and testing for the exam.
  • Recall the core components covered in the exam through didactic supplementation and test questions.


Sign-in begins at 7:30 am. Each day includes a one-hour lunch (on your own), as well as a morning and afternoon break of 15 minutes each. The order of lectures presented and break times may vary according to speaker preference.

Day 1, 8:00 am to 4:30 pm

  • Applying to Take the Exam | Test-Taking Strategies
  • Professional Caring and Ethical Practice
    Synergy Model Reviewed | Informatics | Systems Thinking
  • Cardiovascular
    Physiology and Hemodynamics | Acute Coronary Syndrome | Acute Myocardial Infarction | Heart Failure | Endocarditis
  • Hematology
    Life-Threatening Coagulopathies | Blood Product Replacement | Inflammation
  • Endocrine
    Diabetes Insipidus and Syndrome of Inappropriate ADH | Diabetes Ketoacidosis and Hyperosmolar Coma | Hypoglycemia
  • Gastrointestinal
    GI Bleed | Hepatic Failure | Acute Pancreatitis | Bowel Infarction | Abdominal Trauma

Day 2, 8:00 am to 4:30 pm

  • Neuro
    Care of the Brain-Injured Patient | Stroke (Ischemic, Hemorrhagic) | Increased Intracranial Pressure | Seizures | Spinal Cord Injury
  • Behavioral and Psychosocial
    Delirium and Dementia | Mood Disorders and Depression | Substance Abuse
  • Renal
    Renal Assessment | Acute Renal Failure | Electrolytes
  • Pulmonary
    Assessment and Physiology | Acute Respiratory Failure | ARDS | Pneumonia | Pulmonary Embolus | Asthma | Chest Trauma
  • Multisystem
    Sepsis | Septic Shock | MODS