Residential Child & Youth Care Professional Certification

Frequently Asked Questions

When is the application fee due?

The $30 application fee is due upon submission of the application form and verification of training, which must occur before the certification test is taken.

What does the $30 application fee include?

The application fee covers processing, record maintenance, certification exam processing, and certificate of achievement.

What forms of payment do you accept to pay application fee?

We accept most major credit cards, personal and agency checks, money orders and purchase orders.

How much time do I have to complete the course?

Eighteen months from the time of completion of the first course.

Do I have to complete training in all four modules?


How many hours of training per book are required for RCYCP?

  • 12 hours: Building Relationships
  • 12 hours: Developing a Culture of Care
  • 12 hours: Understanding Child Development
  • 6 hours: Teaching Discipline

After completing the courses, how much time do I have to complete the exam?

After receiving notification from NRC, you have three weeks to go online and complete the exam.

How do I study for the test?

The exam covers information from the four modules of the course manual. It is a closed-book exam. Using the review questions at the end of each section will help to guide your study for the exam along with reviewing the information obtained in the course you have completed.

How many and what kind of questions are on the exam?

The exam consists of 90 multiple choice and true/false questions.

How much time do I have to complete the exam online?

The exam allows participants 120 minutes to complete all 90 questions.  The average time for completing the exam is 30 to 40 minutes, according to our records.

What score do I have to make on the exam to be certified?

You must score an 80% or above.

If I fail the exam will I have another opportunity to pass?

If you fail the exam, you will have one additional opportunity to take it. It must be taken within one month's notification. If you fail the second time, you must re-apply and pay an additional $30 application fee.

Do I ever have to be re-certified?

No, as long as you obtain 1.2 CEU’s (12 clock hours) for training related to the youth care area per year, your certification will be current. You will be responsible for submitting the verification of training to NRC by December 31 each year.

How do I document CEU’s?

There is a Verification of Training form that asks for all information necessary for documentation purposes.

Is the RCYCP trainer the only person who can sign the verification of training form for continuing education units?

The verification of training form requests the trainer of the workshop signature upon completion of the training.  However, if for some reason a trainer did not sign the form, the RCYCP Trainer and the executive director of your agency are the authorized signatures that we will accept.

What types of training are acceptable for continuing education units?

The training courses that support the competencies of the curriculum, which are located throughout the course manual, are a good guide to determining if the workshops submitted will be acceptable.  College coursework that supports youth development philosophy and/or techniques to more effectively enhance services to youth and families are also acceptable.  For those interested in taking the National Association of Child Professional (NACP) exam, we believe familiarization with the Association of Child and Youth Care Practice (ACYCP) competencies and continuing education criteria should be considered when submitting certification.  To view the ACYCP competencies, visit or click here.  

How do I recertify if I fail to submit certification documents to NRCYS by December 31?

The process of recertification, if you fail to submit required documentation by the year-end deadline, requires the child and youth care professional to once again attend all four modules of the RCYCP curriculum and to retake the exam.

What's the difference between being a certified trainer and a certified child-care worker?

With the NRCYS Residential Child & Youth Care Professional curriculum and training program, we use the term "certification" in two ways:

  • Certified Trainer - Professionals who have completed an NRCYS training of trainers (trainer certification) course and have been certified by NRCYS to train the Residential Child and Youth Care Worker curriculum to others, at their own agency.
  • Certified Child & Youth Care Professional - Professionals who have completed 42 hours of training as specified by NRCYS within a maximum of 18 months, have applied for certification, paid a fee of $30, and passed an exam provided by NRCYS with 80% or more correct.

A certified Child & Youth Care Professional may or may not be a Certified Trainer.

Does the RCYCP trainer need to re-certify each year?

At this time, RCYCP trainers do not have to recertify by the submittal of continuing education units each year to NRCYS.

As the RCYCP Trainer, do I need to supervise the trainees while taking the exam?

Yes, there should be supervision during the exam. The ideal proctoring environment may not always be possible.  Suggestions to supervise trainees include but not limited to: the identification of a specific area where trainees are in view, a request of trainees to leave their manuals and notes outside of the testing area, and immediate access to the trainer should the trainees have questions about the exam or the use of the computer while completing the exam.

Does everyone have to take the exam at the same time?

No. Most agencies do not have the capacity to have everyone take the exam at the same time. The RCYCP Trainer can schedule the exams as necessary.

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