Acupuncture Exam

What Is The Acupuncture Exam?

The NBCE Acupuncture Examination is an elective exam that is offered six times a year at Prometric Testing Centers throughout North America. It consists of 200 standard multiple-choice questions, divided into two equal sessions of 100 questions each. The Acupuncture Examination requires approximately three hours of test administration time, divided into two equal sessions of 90 minutes each.

Who Can Take Acupuncture?


  • You must have successfully completed 100 hours of instruction in acupuncture, before the application deadline.
  • Your instruction may be from one of the chiropractic colleges whose students are currently eligible to take the NBCE examinations.
  • Or, your instruction may be from a college or university accredited by an accrediting body recognized by the U.S. Department of Education

Topics, Sample Tests and Reference Texts

The NBCE develops every exam based on a test plan. The detailed Acupuncture Test Plan includes topics and weightings (the percentage of the test devoted to each topic).

The NBCE offers a Sample Test for Acupuncture. The sample test contains 25 questions and costs $15. You will receive an overall score for the test, but will not see which questions were answered correctly/incorrectly.

The NBCE uses reference texts from the chiropractic colleges. See the Acupuncture Reference Text List.


Test Sites And Test Site Rules

The NBCE will notify you once your application has been processed. It is then up to you to contact Prometric Testing Centers to schedule your testing appointment. Appointment times are dependent upon available space at testing centers.

Plan to arrive 30 minutes prior to the scheduled testing appointment to complete admission procedures. You must present one valid,  government-issued photo ID at the testing center. Testing aids of any kind will not be permitted in the testing center. You must store all personal items in a locker. You will be monitored at all times by audio and video recorders.

Dates and Deadlines


2023 Examination Dates

Examination Date (Testing appointments available on dates listed below) Application,  Changes
February 6 – 11, 2023 01/31/2023
April 3 – 8, 2023 03/28/2023
June 5 – 10, 2023 05/30/2023
August 7 – 12, 2023 08/01/2023
October 2 – 7, 2023 09/26/2023
December 4 – 9, 2023 11/28/2023

What Is A Passing Score?

The NBCE recommends a passing score of 375. Attaining an NBCE recommended passing score does not guarantee acceptance by a state licensing agency. The use of ACU scores for any purpose is at the discretion of individual state licensing boards.



Exam Fee/Retake Fee Refund For Withdrawal
Acupuncture $750 $600


Withdraw / Reschedule

The NBCE must RECEIVE your application by 5:00 p.m. Mountain Time on the deadlines listed above.
You cannot make any changes to a scheduled exam after the deadline.

For reschedules/cancellations 30 days or greater prior to the  SPEC and ACU exam application deadlines, there is no charge.
For cancellations within this same time frame, the NBCE will offer a full refund of the original exam fee.
Please email or call 800-964-6223 to discuss.

For reschedules/cancellations 5-29 days prior to the SPEC and ACU exam application deadlines, there is a $50 charge paid to and retained by Prometric and for cancellations within this same time frame, the NBCE will offer a partial refund of the original exam fee. Please contact or call 800-964-6223 to discuss.

After published deadlines, you may not make any changes to your appointment and the NBCE will issue no refunds.


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