Continuing Competence

Continuing Competence | RN/LPN

All continuing competence requirements must be met before renewal or reinstatement licenses will be issued. No grace periods and no exceptions will be granted.

(One of the following is required)

  • 15 Contact Hours of continued education and 640 hours of active practice within previous 2 years. Active practice is defined as activities performed, either for compensation or without compensation, consistent with the scope of practice for each level of licensure, RN or LPN [21 NCAC 36 .0120(5)].
  • National Certification or Re-certification by a National Credentialing Body recognized by the Board
  • 30 Contact Hours of continued education
  • Completion of a Board-Approved Refresher Course
  • Completion of a minimum of two (2) semester hours of post-licensure academic education related to nursing practice
  • 15 Contact Hours of continued education and completion of a nursing project as Principal Investigator or Co-Investigator to include statement of problem, project objectives, methods, date of completion and summary of findings
  • 15 Contact Hours of continued education and Authoring or Co-Authoring a nursing-related article, paper, book or book chapter
  • 15 Contact Hours of continued education and developing and conducting a nursing continuing education presentation or presentations totaling a minimum of five contact hours, including program brochure or course syllabi, objectives, date and location of presentation, and approximate number of attendees

Renewal – If a nurse cannot demonstrate meeting the continuing competence requirements, the license will be placed on INACTIVE STATUS starting at 12:01 a.m. on the first day after a nurse’s renewal date until compliance with the Continuing Competence requirement is met.

Reinstatement – License will not be issued until all Continuing Competence requirements have been met.


The Board sends out random audit notifications via the Nurse Portal when renewal notifications are released. It is each licensee’s responsibility to make sure their correct email address and mailing address is on file with the Board. Notice of random audit will also be provided at the time the online renewal application is accessed.

Licensees are only to submit evidence of continuing competence if specifically notified by the Board.

Questions can be emailed to Continuing Competence using the Email Us Form.

Last Changed: 18-March-2024