CNT Course Policies and Procedures

Thank you for your interest in the CCAOM Clean Needle Technique Course. Prior to registering, please review the following information. For questions not addressed here, see the Frequently Asked Questions page or contact the office.

Click on one of the topics below to learn more:


Acceptance into a CNT Course
Candidate Demographic Information
Certificate of Completion
Challenging Exam Content, Administration, or Results
Disability Accommodations
Dismissal for a Reason
Foreign Language
Pass Rate
Repeated Failed Exams
Switching Written or Practical Exam Dates and Times
Switching Written or Practical Exam Languages
Withdrawing from a CNT Course



Acceptance into a CNT Course:  Read thoroughly to understand the registration approval process. 

  1. After submitting an online registration request, you will receive an email with instructions to submit required  eligibility documentation.
  2. If your documentation is complete and you are eligible for the course, you will receive an approval email (within about 1 week after your initial online registration request. If you don't receive an approval, contact the office.)
  3. The course content and additional information about how to prepare for the exams will appear in your CCAOM portal once your registration has been approved (login required).
  4. If you miss the written or practical exam on your registered date, rescheduling a retake will be necessary.  

    Candidate Demographic Information: Please keep your physical and email addresses updated in your CCAOM portal. Be sure that the first and last name in your CCAOM profile match the first and last name on your photo ID

    NOTE: The name in your CCAOM profile is the name will be used for your certificate of completion and all requested CNT verification. Be advised that reissuing of a certificate with a different version of your name, or replacing a certificate due to non-delivery, will incur an additional fee.


    Certificate of Completion: Upon successful completion, candidates may state that they hold a certificate in Clean Needle Technique as administered by the CCAOM, but may not state that they are certified in acupuncture, Oriental medicine, or any other modality as a result of completion of the CNT course.  Candidates shall not use acronyms or subtitles after their names to reference the CNT certificate; neither will the CNT certificate include any acronyms or subtitles after candidates' names.  


    Challenging Exam Content, Administration, or Results: Any questions or comments about exam content, administration, or results must be submitted in writing to the CCAOM office within ten days after the exam date. The process for challenging exam content, administration, or results is outlined below. 

    • Initial Challenge of
      • Examination Content: If you believe there is an error in a particular question or have comments about other specific aspects of exam content, submit your concern in writing to the CCAOM office within ten days after the exam date. Include your name, email address, exam date and time, and a description of the specific question(s). 
      • Examination Administration Conditions: Should you experience any environmental difficulties during the administration of the exam, you are obligated to resolve your concern with the proctor or examiner during the administration of the exam.
      • Examination Results: Submit a written communication to the CCAOM office within ten days of receiving your results. Your written challenge should include your name, email address, exam date and time, and an explanation as to why you are challenging your exam results. 
    • Resolution of Challenge: The CCAOM office will evaluate and investigate all challenges and promptly issue a written response to the candidate disclosing the results of the evaluation and investigation.
    • Appealing Examination Decisions: You may appeal the CCAOM's response by sending written justification for the appeal to the chair of CNT Committee (appeals should be addressed to "Chair, CNT Committee"). The CCAOM office must receive the appeal request within 10 days following CCAOM’s response to the the initial challenge. On receipt of a written request for an appeal, the office will immediately forward the request to the chair of the CNT Committee. 
    • Final Decision by CNT Committee Chair: Within 10 days after receipt of a written request for an appeal, the chair shall: (1) make a decision concerning the merits of the appeal or (2) refer the appeal to the CNT Committee. The decision of the CNT Committee chair will be provided in writing by the office to the candidate. If the chair refers the appeal to the CNT Committee, the committee shall meet to consider the appeal and promptly communicate their final decision in writing to the candidate. 


    Confidentiality:  All candidate CNT course records are permanently and securely maintained and verification is always available upon request. No information will be released without the express written authorization of the candidate. Payment information is not stored and all CCAOM systems and processes are PCI compliant.


    Disability Accommodations: The CCAOM provides equal access to the CNT course for individuals with disabilities and does not discriminate on the basis of disability or a serious medical condition. As required by law, reasonable accommodations will be made to ensure equal access for persons with disabilities without fundamentally altering the nature or learning objectives of the course. or lowering assessment standards. Individuals seeking accommodations are required to provide current documentation and request specific reasonable accommodations. To request an accommodation, the following documents must be uploaded during the online registration request process:

    1. Information pertaining to the disability or serious medical condition for which reasonable accommodation is being sought, including identification of the type of disability with an official diagnosis (physical, cognitive, psychological, learning or serious medical condition) from a qualified evaluator;
    2. Documentation of the disability from a professional, unrelated to the disabled individual, who is trained and qualified (i.e. certified and/or licensed) to evaluate/ diagnose/ assess the particular disability or health condition. These professionals include, but are not limited to, medical doctors, psychologists, audiologists, ophthalmologists, and educational diagnosticians. Documentation must include the letterhead of the professional providing the evaluation/ diagnosis and date of diagnosis/ assessment and the name, address, and qualifications of the professional;
    3. Information regarding the limitations imposed by the disability or serious medical condition;
    4. Information about the impact of the disability or serious medical condition on the individual's ability to perform the essential functions required in the CNT course;
    5. Information about previous reasonable accommodations in a higher education setting, if applicable;
    6. A statement outlining the specific reasonable accommodations the individual believes would be helpful in allowing him or her to perform the essential functions of the CNT course.

    Documentation should be submitted via the CNT Course Disability Accommodation Upload Form

    *Please note: CCAOM can only honor accommodation requests made at the time of initial course registration. 


    Dismissal for Reason: The CCAOM enforces a non-negotiable policy for immediate dismissal without refund from any CNT course session for reasons including, but not limited to:

    • Cheating on the Written or Practical Exams: All forms of cheating, including the use of electronic devices of any kind (such as translation devices, electronic eyewear, smart watches, etc.) are forbidden. 
    • Misrepresentation: Any misrepresentation of eligibility to take the CNT course will result in cancellation of registration. Photo identification is required for both written and practical exams, and identity misrepresentation will result in immediate dismissal. If the misrepresentation is discovered following course completion and certificate award, CCAOM will revoke the certificate and notify the course attendee and any entity to which CCAOM sent a CNT verification.
    • Taping/Photographing: Audio or video taping, recording or photography of any portion of the CCAOM CNT course is strictly prohibited without prior written permission. Any individual observed recording any portion of the CNT course in any format will be dismissed immediately and will not receive a refund.
    • Inappropriate behavior: Appropriate decorum is expected from all CNT candidates.  Online proctors and examiners are authorized to dismiss from the exam any candidate who is disruptive or otherwise behaves in an inappropriate manner.


    Exams: All course attendees must complete both an online live-proctored 55 multiple-choice question written exam and an online real-time practical exam, which consists of demonstrating proper needling technique based on verbal instructions.  Only candidates who pass the written exam will be allowed to register for the practical exam. Written and practical exam results are typically emailed within 10 business days. 


    Fees:  The fee for the English language online CNT course and written exam is $150. There is an additional fee of $50 for a foreign language written exam. The fee for the Chinese or Korean version of the online CNT course (with foreign language written exam included) is $200. There is also a $75 fee for the online examiner-administered practical exam, regardless of language requested. The retake fee is $75 for the written exam and $75 for the practical exam. 

    Language of Course / Exam   Fee
     English Course and Written Exam     $150
     English Course with Chinese or Korean Written Exam     $200
     Chinese or Korean Course and Written Exam     $200
     Practical Exam (all languages)       $75





    Foreign Language: Some states may require completion of the CNT course in English. Be sure to check your state's licensing requirements before registering. To receive credit for completing the CNT course in English, the course and written exam must be completed in English. Please select the preferred written exam language when registering online.  

    NCCAOM CNT Policy: Individuals seeking NCCAOM certification must have completed a CCAOM CNT course within the six years prior to their application date for NCCAOM certification. Otherwise, the CNT course must be re-taken, unless the applicant has held a continuous license to practice acupuncture within the last three years before applying to NCCAOM for certification. Please contact the NCCAOM for more information about this policy.


    Pass Rate: Historically, about 90% of all candidates pass the CNT course (including written and practical exams) on the first attempt. 


    Prerequisites: Current acupuncture school students (or those who are enrolled in an NCCAOM-approved or state-approved tutorial) are required to have at least begun a needling techniques course no later than the date of their CCAOM CNT practical exam. 


    Repeated Failed Exams: Candidates who do not pass the CNT written or practical exam after three attempts will be required to repeat the full online CNT course, including all modules, quizzes and CNT Manual study. After the third failed attempt, repeating candidates will be charged the full registration fee and must spend a minimum of 30 days completing the course before they will be approved to take the exam again. Any candidate who does not pass on the fourth attempt may retake the exam at a reduced retake fee up to two more times before repeating the full course again. More information about the process for re-registering for the course will be provided to the candidate by the office. 


    Switching Written or Practical Exam Dates and Times: Please contact the office.

    1. Notify the CCAOM office by email that you would like to switch your exam date. Notification must be sent at least 24 hours before your exam date.*
    2. A refund of your original exam fee will be issued, less a switch fee of $50. The switch fee is reduced to $25 for requests received 15 or more days before the initial written or practical exam date/time, or if there is a documented medical emergency. 
    3. Log in to the CCAOM website, select your new exam date and time, and re-register. Candidates who are switching exam dates do not need to resubmit eligibility documentation. 

    NOTE: If you miss your exam time, or do not give 24 hours notice that you will miss your exam, you will not be issued a refund and you will be charged a retake fee of $75. 

    Switching Written or Practical Exam Languages: Please contact the office.  There may be a fee associated with switching your exam language. CCAOM will not be able to accommodate requests made less than 14 days prior to the exam date. 

    Withdrawing from a CNT Course: Please contact the office as soon as possible. Due to the online nature of the course, refunds for withdrawing are not offered. In the case of a documented illness or other emergency that impacts your ability to complete the online course and/or your scheduled written or practical exam, notify the office immediately.