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Nicotine Dependence Specialist (NDS)

A voluntary national credential that provides foundational knowledge of nicotine addiction, develops skills and strategies for nicotine addiction counseling and examines related recovery and wellness issues.

NDS Written Examination

The written national credentialing examination is tailored to test the applicant on his or her projected knowledge based on experience, education and training.  

Examination Details

The following skill groups are evaluated in the examination, and an applicant for national certification should be well versed in each of these topic areas:

  1. treatment admission (screening, intake and orientation)
  2. clinical assessment
  3. ongoing treatment planning
  4. counseling services (individual, group, family, crisis intervention and client education)
  5. documentation
  6. case management
  7. discharge and continuing care
  8. legal, ethical and professional growth issues

The Certification Examination for Nicotine Dependence Specialists (NDS) consists of 200 multiple-choice, objective questions with a total testing time of three hours.  The examination tests candidates’ knowledge in the areas of nicotine dependence (30%), counseling (20%), and intervention planning (50%).

Testing Schedule

All NCC AP examinations are now available throughout the month at a date and location convenient for you! You now have more flexibility and opportunity to get your national credential than ever before. Locate a Testing Center in Your Area

Test Preparation Materials