Practice Resources

Stand out in the world of diabetes care and education

Find helpful information on two popular credentials for diabetes care and education specialists.

Board Certified-Advanced Diabetes Management (BC-ADM®)

ADCES-owned credential for advanced level, masters-prepared practitioners

Certified Diabetes Care & Education Specialist® (CDCES®)

Fully administered and maintained by the Certification Board for Diabetes Care & Education (CBDCE).

Requirements for the BC-ADM® & CDCES® Credentials

Eligible Professions
  • Registered Nurse (includes NPs and CNSs)
  • Registered Dietitian
  • Pharmacist
  • PA
  • Physician
  • Standard pathways: Many health professionals qualify including, Registered Nurses, Registered Dietitians/Dietitian Nutritionists, Pharmacists, PAs, MD/DO, and many others.
  • Unique Qualifications Pathway (UQP) - Additional options for health professionals with advanced degrees in health-related area/concentration.

    Visit the Certification Examination for Diabetes Educators Examination Handbook for complete details
  • 500 clinical practice hours in advanced diabetes management within 48 months prior to taking certification examination
  • At least 2 years of experience working under the qualifying profession (not required to be in diabetes)
  • 1000 hours of diabetes education within 4 years, with 400 hours completed in the preceding year (NOTE: UQP requirement differs)
Other Requirements
  • Advanced degree (master's degree or higher in relevant field; not required for physicians with active license)

  • Clinical hours must take place after relevant licensure and advanced degree have been obtained
  • 15 clock hours of diabetes-related continuing education (CE) within the 2 years preceding application to take exam (UQP requirement differs)
Exam Structure
  • 175 multiple choice questions, including 25 pretest/unscored
  • Time allowed: 3 hours and 30 minutes
  • 200 multiple choice questions, including 25 pretest/unscored
  • Time allowed: 4 hours
Major Exam Content Areas
(# of Items / Area
  • Assessment and Diagnosis (45)
  • Planning and Intervention (50)
  • Evaluation and Follow-up (34)
  • Population Health, Advocacy, & Professional Development(21)
  • Assessment of the Diabetes Continuum (59)
  • Interventions for Diabetes Continuum (88)
  • Disease Management (28)
Practice Exam
  • Over 70 multiple choice questions available in two modes: practice and exam
  • $39 ADCES Members
  • $59 Nonmembers
  • 50 multiple choice questions in a recommended 60 minute time frame
  • Cost: $55
Initial Certification Fees
  • $600 ADCES members
  • $900 Nonmembers
  • Cost $350
Exam Window
  • June (application due May 1; final deadline May 15 with $50 late fee)
  • December (application due Nov 1; final deadline Nov 15 with $50 late fee)
  • Submit application at any time
  • Must sit for exam within 90 days of approval of application
Renewal Requirements
  • Every 5 years
  • $500 ADCES members
  • $800 Nonmembers
  • 1000 practice hours
  • Professional development requirements: There are six categories, including Continuing Education Hours, Academic Credits, Presentations, Publications or Research, Preceptor, and Professional Service.
  • Every 5 years
  • $250-$500 fee, depending on deadline chosen
  • 1000 renewal practice hours during renewal cycle; definition for renewal practice requirement is expanded over initial requirement (if unable to meet practice hour requirement, need to retake exam and provide documentation of 75 hours of CE)
  • Minimum of 75 hours of acceptable activities-minimum of 45 hours of formal CE and maximum of 30 hours of other specified activities (academic courses, presentations, publications, or mentorship for CBDCE)
  • Continue to hold the license, certification or registration for the same discipline held at the time of initial certification
Certification Details

 Visit our BC-ADM page

Visit the CDCES page

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