Certified Pediatric Nurses' Perceptions of Job Satisfaction

Janet Wyatt, PhD, RN, CRNP, FAANP; Margaret Harrison, MS, RN, CPNP


Pediatr Nurs. 2010;36(4):205-208. 

In This Article

Abstract and Introduction


The Pediatric Nursing Certification Board surveyed a national sample of 1354 hospital-based certified pediatric nurses (CPNs®) to determine their perceptions of certification on job satisfaction and other factors. There is a substantial body of literature that demonstrates job satisfaction among nurses positively increases retention and reduces absenteeism and burnout. CPNs® seek certification for a personal sense of achievement, professional recognition, and validation of clinical competency. The certified nurse survey respondents had self-reported high levels of job satisfaction and indicated that relationships with colleagues and a supportive work environment were very important to their levels of job satisfaction. The results of this study highlight important factors for hospitals to consider as they plan strategies and cost-effective ways to positively affect patient care and retain qualified pediatric nurses at the bedside.


In 2008, the Pediatric Nursing Certification Board (PNCB) conducted a national survey of hospital-based pediatric nurses who hold the Certified Pediatric Nurse (CPN®) credential to learn more about their perceptions of job satisfaction. The survey sought to measure the impact of certification on job-related factors as well as those factors that contribute to the motivation of pediatric nurses to seek certification. With responses from over 1300 certified nurses, this survey provides valuable insight into these issues from the perspectives of hospital-based certified pediatric nurses.

PNCB is committed to working in partnership with employers to support quality pediatric nursing care at the bedside and increase nurse retention rates. For over 35 years, PNCB has developed nursing certification programs designed to promote worldwide excellence in health care for children. PNCB conducts four certification exams for pediatric nurses that include:

  • The Certified Pediatric Nurse (CPN®) Exam. This exam is for the nurse who has extensive experience in general pediatric nursing practice and who demonstrates knowledge and abilities related to pediatric nursing beyond basic RN licensure.

  • The Certified Pediatric Nurse Practitioner – Primary Care (CPNP-PC®) Exam. This exam is for the advanced practice nurse with extensive knowledge related to the diagnosis and management of primary care pediatric health care issues.

  • The Certified Pediatric Nurse Practitioner – Acute Care (CPNP-AC ®) Exam. This exam was created in response to the emerging role of Acute Care PNPs. These advanced practice pediatric nurse practitioners manage the acute and urgent care needs of children in hospitals, clinics, and home settings.

  • The Certified Pediatric Emergency Nurse (CPEN™) Exam. In 2008, PNCB developed this exam with the Board of Certification for Emergency Nursing (BCEN®). This unique exam was developed in response to the report by the Institute of Medicine (2006) identifying an urgent need for specialized nursing expertise in the management of the emergency health care needs of pediatric patients.


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