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Certification FAQ's

Do I have to be a Lamaze member to become certified?
Beginning with the 2014 fall examination, all childbirth educators who become Lamaze certified will be automatically granted membership in Lamaze International for the duration of their active credential. This three year membership will ensure all LCCE Educators have the latest news, resources, education and programs that support providing evidence-based education and information to women and their families.

Is the Learning Guide required for candidates using any of the pathways to certification? 
Self-study from the Learning Guide is only required for candidates following Pathway 1 - Option 1 of the Eligibility Requirements. The Learning Guide is highly recommended for all Pathways, and can be ordered by any candidate online or by contacting the Lamaze Administrative Office at 202-367-1128.

How can I best prepare for the Lamaze Certification Exam? 
Since this is an adult learner program, each candidate has the power to evaluate their strengths and determine how long they need to feel fully prepared to successfully sit for the Lamaze Certification Exam. Six to twelve months of preparation are recommended for new educators, though this does vary depending on the amount of time and prior knowledge that each candidate has to devote to their studying. Lamaze International recommends the following exam preparation resources:

What does a Lamaze Certified Childbirth Educator do?  

  1. Promote the childbearing experience as a normal, natural and healthy process that profoundly affects women and their families.
  2. Assist women and families to discover and use strategies that facilitate normal, natural, healthy pregnancy, birth, breastfeeding and early parenting.
  3. Help women and their families to understand how interventions and complications influence the normal course of pregnancy, birth, breastfeeding and early parenting.
  4. Provide information and support that encourages attachment between babies and their families.
  5. Assist women and their families to make informed decisions for childbearing.
  6. Act as an advocate to promote normal, natural, healthy, fulfilling childbirth experiences for women and their families.
  7. Design, teach and evaluate a course in Lamaze preparation that increases a woman’s confidence and ability to give birth.

What can I do if there is not a Lamaze Childbirth Educator Program Seminar in my area? 
If you're pursuing Lamaze certification and can't find a seminar in your area, there are a few options:

  1. Consider pursuing certification through Pathway 1, Option 2 - which will allow you to take a formal course on childbirth education through another organization. 
  2. If you know others who are interested in becoming Lamaze Certified Childbirth Educators, you can contract independently with one of our Lamaze-Accredited Childbirth Educator Programs to bring the seminar to your group. Rates may vary from program to program. 

Why Become a Lamaze Certified Childbirth Educator?

A Lamaze Certified Childbirth Educator is a skilled and knowledgeable teacher who guides women and their families through the extraordinary journey of pregnancy and birth. Integrating traditional wisdom and contemporary knowledge with the high-tech world of modern obstetrics, Lamaze Certified Childbirth Educators provide women and their families with evidence-based education on nature’s plan for birth.

With the Lamaze credential, you will demonstrate to maternal-child health professionals and expectant families that you have met a standard level of knowledge and skill – that you are a competent childbirth educator.

For over 50 years, Lamaze International has been the leading provider of evidence-based education programs that prepare childbirth educators to teach with skill and confidence.
Certification by Lamaze International is the only accredited certification for childbirth educators and the most respected and recognized credential in childbirth education. Lamaze certification offers you the opportunity to:

  • Gain and validate skills and knowledge
  • Increase confidence in your teaching ability
  • Enhance professional opportunities and career development
  • Expand knowledge of resources and teaching strategies
  • Earn the recognition and respect of colleagues
  • Demonstrate competence to expectant women and their families

How do I set up an alternate test site if I am outside the United States and want to take the exam in English, Spanish or Romanian?
Exam candidates  taking the test in English, Spanish or Romanian more than 150 miles from a PSI testing site may request to establish an alternate test site. Candidates must contact the Administrative Office at least ten weeks prior to the exam date (by the alternate site deadline) and are responsible for identifying an appropriate test site, with a computer available, and proctor.

Is there a fee for an alternate site?
There is no fee related to taking the exam at an alternate site.

What are the requirements for a proctor at an alternate test site? 
The proctor should be someone with experience in administering national examinations. Proctor may not be a Lamaze Certified Childbirth Educator or other childbirth educator. Proctor may not be someone who has an interest on how the candidates will perform on the exam.

Do you need an internet connection at the alternate exam site?

Yes, you do need a live internet connection. Our exam software, TesTrac uploads your answers immediately after each question. Allowing you to come back to where you left off in the case you lose your internet connection temporarily.

What are the requirements for an alternate site?
Alternate sites can be set up outside the US, where PSI sites are not available. The site must be a secure, quiet, comfortable location which is free from noise, distractions, interruptions, or outside interference. Candidates may not carry beepers, cellular phones, books or papers in the examination room. All items carried into the examination room, including purses, must be placed on a table away from candidates during the examination.

What should I have with me when I take the exam?
Candidates taking the written exam should bring several sharpened #2 pencils and an eraser. Candidates taking the exam at a PSI site must bring their exam voucher with the unique registration number and a government-issued photo ID. Candidates may NOT bring cellular phones, beepers, calculators, books or paper into the testing center or the examination room.

What happens after I have submitted my exam application to Lamaze? 
Once you complete your application in the Certification Center you will receive notification confirming receipt and that it is being reviewed. After your application has been approved, you will receive e-mail notification. The letter will contain instructions for reserving a seat at a PSI test site as well as an official test site voucher which must be printed out and presented at the time that you sit for the exam.

If your application is incomplete, or if you are found to be ineligible to sit for the exam, you will be notified by the Lamaze Administrative Office. 

A $25 administrative fee will be assessed for incomplete applications.  This includes missing documentation, such as proof of education/licensure, teaching experience or continuing education.

Applicants who do not meet the exam eligibility criteria will have their exam fee refunded, less a $25 administrative fee. All other exam and re-exam fees are non-refundable.

Does Lamaze offer financial assistance to exam applicants?  
There are no scholarships available at this time.  Pricing has been adjusted for foreign countries based on the data provided by the World Bank based on Gross national Income (GNI).

What are the eligibility requirements for taking the exam? 
Lamaze certification candidates may become eligible to sit for the exam in one of three ways. They may successfully complete all coursework and components of the Lamaze Childbirth Educator Program and sit as a traditional candidate, or qualify as an experienced educator or as a midwife/midwifery student.

New educators qualify to take the exam by successfully completing all of the required components of the Lamaze Childbirth Educator Program. Please visit the Pathways to Certification page or contact the Administrative Office at 202-367-1128 for details.

To qualify as an experienced childbirth educator, you must be a licensed health professional (i.e., RN, PT, MT), OR hold a bachelor's degree or higher, OR successfully complete a formal course on teaching childbirth education (i.e., Lamaze, ALACE, ICEA, Bradley, BEST, Birthing from Within, Birth Works or CAPPA), AND have documentation for teaching 60 hours of childbirth education classes in the last three years AND have documentation of 25 contact hours of continuing education applicable to childbirth education in the past three years. Childbirth education may include pregnancy, birth, breastfeeding, sibling and postpartum classes. 
Midwives and midwifery students qualify to sit for the exam following attendance at a 1-day “Fast-Track” seminar. Due to limited availability of such seminars, midwives and midwifery students may elect to attend the full 3-day seminar. 
All candidates must complete and submit the Certification Exam Application along with all required documentation and fees to the Lamaze online Certification Center by the application deadline.

What if I need to defer or cancel my exam date? 
If an exam candidate needs to cancel or transfer to the next exam administration she/he must submit a written request at least two weeks prior to the exam date. Notification of exam cancellation or transfer after this date will forfeit the exam fee and the candidate must reapply. Candidates are permitted to defer or transfer their exam application and fee for two exam administrations only. Each exam deferment will incur a $75 deferment fee and must be paid prior to the next exam administration. Exam cancellations and transfers are reviewed on a case-by-case basis.

What if I have special needs? 
Lamaze International’s policy is that no individual shall be excluded from the opportunity to participate in the Lamaze Childbirth Educator Certification Exam on the basis of race, national origin, religion, sex, age or disability. Any requests for special testing accommodations pursuant to the Americans with Disabilities Act must be made in writing and submitted with the initial application and documentation forms no later than the application deadline. Lamaze International reserves the right to obtain a second professional opinion regarding the nature and severity of such requests and the appropriate accommodations. Upon receipt of such requests for special accommodations, Lamaze International will contact the applicant to make necessary arrangements.

How will I receive exam results?  
All exams are scored and analyzed by an independent psychometrician and reviewed by members of the Certification Council.

Log into the certification center where you applied to take the exam and your results will appear in your dashboard within eight weeks of the exam date.  You will receive an email when the results are posted.  The pass/fail results will be available as well as your individual score report.

Approximately four weeks after initial notification of certification exam results, successful candidates receive a formal certificate, recertification information, and licensing information. A press release recognizing their status as a Lamaze Certified Childbirth Educator (LCCE) will also be shared here on the Lamaze website.

Can I retake the exam if I do not pass it the first time
The Lamaze Certification Council does not limit the number of times a candidate may retake the certification exam. Candidates wishing to repeat the exam within two years may do so without re-establishing eligibility, but must contact the Administrative Office and remit a re-examination fee. Thereafter, to be re-tested, candidates must reapply; submit all applicable fees, application and documentation to re-establish eligibility.