CTR Exam

CTR Exam Testing and Coronavirus

[April 3]
NCRA's Council on Certification is exploring options to accommodate 2020 exam candidates who might be challenged meeting experience requirements by the application deadline. Exam updates to be posted in late April.​

[April 2]
The 2020 CTR Exam testing windows are scheduled to continue as scheduled in summer (June 26-July 17) and fall (October 16-November 6). Candidate applications are being accepted and processed within 15 business days.

[March 27]
NCRA's Council on Certification is considering options for testing windows in 2020 to accommodate rescheduled candidates. Exam updates to be posted in late April.

[March 26]
For candidates who completed the March 2020, the timetable for score reports has not changed. Score reports are expected by May 8. Post-exam processes and analyses are necessary prior to the release of score reports. Candidates will be notified by email when their results can be accessed online.

[March 19]

NCRA's test vendor PSI has made the difficult decision to temporarily close PSI-owned and operated physical test centers in the United States starting end of day March 19, and in the United Kingdom starting end of day March 20, until April 13, 2020.

For candidates to be rescheduled for free, contact ctrexam@ncra-usa.org with your request prior to your scheduled testing date and include which testing window (Summer: June 26-July 17; Fall: October 16-November 6) you prefer.

[March 18]
Due to state restrictions related to COVID-19, PSI test centers are closing without much advance notice.

All March 2020 candidates are encouraged to reschedule at this time. Rescheduling to another 2020 testing window can be accommodated with no financial penalty. 

To be rescheduled, contact NCRA @ ctrexam@ncra-usa.org with your request prior to your scheduled testing date and include which testing window (Summer: June 26-July 17; Fall: October 16-November 6) you prefer.

[March 12, 2020]

In response to the growing health situation posed by coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), NCRA is allowing any scheduled March 2020 candidates to reschedule to another testing window in 2020 without financial penalty. Any candidate who is uneasy about going to a test center can be rescheduled to another 2020 testing window with no financial penalty. Rescheduling is recommended for any candidate who is experiencing an illness, exhibiting flu-like symptoms, or has been directed to self-quarantine by their local health authority.

To be rescheduled, contact NCRA @ ctrexam@ncra-usa.org with your request prior to your scheduled testing date.

Keep updated on actions taken by psi, our testing vendor, regarding COVID-19.

CTR Credential

The Certified Tumor Registrar (CTR) credential demonstrates a requisite knowledge and professional competence needed within the cancer registry. candidates receiving a passing score on the exam will be entitled to use “CTR” after their name and will receive a certificate from NCRA’s Council on Certification. to maintain a certified status, a credentialed professional must complete 20 hours of continuing education credits every two years, plus pay an annual fee. 

2020 Candidate Handbook & Application

Download the 2020 candidate handbook & application for more details on the 2020 CTR exam.

CTR Exam Eligibility

The first step is to determine eligibility. requirements include education and experience in the cancer registry field. Review the CTR exam eligibility chart. Need your individual eligibility to be reviewed? complete the CTR exam eligibility request form and submit it as noted on the form. Please allow 6-8 weeks to process. questions? e-mail ctrexam@ncra-usa.org.

CTR Exam Testing Windows

Once eligibility requirements are met, candidates can take the exam during one of the three, three-week long testing periods held annually. Applications must be submitted by the deadline noted for the desired exam date. 

Testing Dates and Deadlines

March 6 - March 27, 2020; application deadline: January 31, 2020

June 26 - July 17, 2020; application deadline: May 29, 2020

October 16 - November 6, 2020; application deadline: September 11, 2020


Exam Registration

 Exam registration fees: NCRA member rate: $315; non-member rate: $415.
 Two forms of identification are required for exam candidates at testing centers. 

Testing Locations

There are over 200 testing locations throughout the U.S. Carrels at testing centers are 39 inches wide and the desks are 35.5” wide and 27” deep. to maximize desk space, the computer monitors are mounted on the rear carrel. 

Notification of Results

 Upon completing the exam, candidates will receive an exam completion report, but not the formal test results. 
 Candidates will be notified of their formal test results by email within six weeks from the last day of the testing period. Scores on the major areas of the exam and on the total exam will be reported.
 Candidates must receive a passing score on the total exam (closed-book + open-book) to be certified.

General Content of the 2020 CTR Exam

The 2020 CTR exam is composed of one-hundred eighty (180), multiple-choice test items, based on seven domains of practice noted below. Test questions are prepared by Subject Matter Experts (SME) in the cancer registry profession from diverse backgrounds and job descriptions.  

 Casefinding (10%)
 Data Quality Assurance (15%)
 Abstracting/Coding (35%)
 Analysis and Data Usage (10%)
 Follow-up (10%) 
 Registry Organization and Operations (10%)
 Cancer Program Accreditations (10%)
One-hundred twenty (120) test items comprise the closed-book portion of the exam; sixty (60) test items comprise the open-book portion. The open-book portion focuses on casefinding, staging, treatment, case validation and finalization, and follow-up. It follows the closed-book portion. candidates are allowed four hours to complete the two-part exam. The closed-book section must be completed in two hours as does the open- book section. 

References for the 2020 CTR Exam

The list of references for the 2020 CTR exam includes the list of references required for the open‐book portion of exam. It also includes a list of primary references. (These materials are not allowed in the open‐book section.) A list of additional references includes materials that may be used to further a candidate’s understanding of the subject matter, but are not used in exam item development.