Iowa Board of Nursing

Online Services

Board Information

Iowa Board of Nursing
RiverPoint Business Park
400 S.W. 8th Street, Suite B
Des Moines, IA 50309-4685
Tel: 515/281-3255
Fax: 515/281-4825

Office Hours:
8:00 a.m.–4:30 p.m.
Monday – Friday

Continuing Education: The Basic Requirements

Continuing education is mandated by Iowa law as a prerequisite to renewal of an Iowa nursing license. The requirement is as follows:

  • For renewal of a three year license, the requirement is 36 contact hours or 3.6 CEUs.
  • For renewal of a license that has been issued for less than three years, the requirement is 24 contact hours or 2.4 CEUs. This applies to the first renewal after any one of the following:

Initial Iowa licensure by examination
Initial Iowa licensure by endorsement from another state
Reactivation from an inactive status

A license issued for less than three years is granted for two years, plus the number of months to the birth month. Thereafter, the license must be renewed every three years.

  • For reactivation from an inactive status, the requirement is 12 contact hours that are not more than 12 months old at the time the credit is submitted for reactivation.

Advanced Registered Nurse Practitioner - Continuing Education Requirement

An Advanced Registered Nurse Practitioner (ARNP) holding current certification in his/her specialty is deemed to be in compliance with Iowa Continuing Education (CE) requirements. There are no extra continuing education credits required for the RN renewal and ARNP registration. The ARNP is required to meet the CE requirements that are recognized by the credentialing body that offers certification in the nurse’s specialty area of practice. Current certification is required to be maintained.
AUDITS: As with all license renewals, a specific number of licensees are randomly selected for audit each month. If selected, a copy of the current ARNP certification issued by the certifying body is required to document that the ARNP has met the continuing education requirement.

Mandatory Training On Abuse Identification and Reporting

It is also mandated that ARNPs, RNs and LPNs who regularly examine, attend, counsel or treat dependent adults or children in Iowa are required to complete training related to the identification and reporting of child/dependent adult abuse. The licensee is required to complete at least two hours of training every five years. The course MUST be approved by the Iowa Department of Public Health Abuse Education Review Panel. The board of nursing requires the licensee, at the time of renewal, to document completion of the training requirements. A list of approved courses is available at

Code of Iowa (1995) - 272C.2
Iowa Administrative Code 655, Chapter 5 - 5.2(2)a

Last updated: 7/07