Exam

NACD Directorship Certification™ Exam

Exam Scheduling

The NACD Directorship Certification™ Exam is administered by Pearson VUE, the global leader in computer-based testing. Once you apply for certification, you will receive detailed instructions on how to schedule and prepare for your exam.

Please Note: Pearson VUE has temporarily closed their company-owned U.S. and Canada-based Pearson Professional Centers (PPCs) starting March 16, 2020, for at least 30 days until April 16, or whenever conditions are deemed safe to re-open.

If you are looking to schedule an exam, the registration windows for new exam appointments will not be available until April 16. 

Exam Format

The examination consists of Part I and Part II. Each part is administered and timed separately (i.e., if a candidate completes Part I with extra time remaining, that time cannot be added to the time allowed for Part II).

Both parts of the exam are scored together. Candidates will pass or fail the entire exam rather than receive a passing or failing score for each part separately.

Part I: Multiple-Choice Items
Part I consists of 95 multiple-choice questions, and candidates will have 90 minutes to complete this part. All multiple-choice items in the NACD exam are written in the form of a question, followed by four answer choices. Candidates should read the question and answer choices carefully, selecting one answer from the choices provided.

Part II: Case-Management Problems
Part II consists of 10 case-management problems, each with three or four steps. Candidates will have 75 minutes to complete this part. You will be provided with information about a situation that a corporate director might encounter. After reading the case over carefully, you will choose between several possible actions. Subsequent steps will provide additional information about the situation and new answer choices.

For each step, candidates must select ALL appropriate answer choices for the situation based on the information provided at that point in the case. Candidates should select as many actions needed to respond appropriately to the situation presented and answer the question.

Answer choices that are NOT needed, not YET needed, or that would be considered OPTIONAL at the point of the case should not be selected.

After moving to the next step, candidates MAY NOT return to that question or any prior questions. The new information disclosed in each step could affect the decisions you made on the prior question(s).

Case-management problems are scored on a point basis, and each step is scored independently of the previous steps. For each step, points are awarded for selecting an appropriate action, and points are deducted for choosing an inappropriate or unnecessary action based on the information provided.

Exam Content

The content and relative weights of topics in the NACD examination are as follows:

  1. Oversee Corporate Strategy - 33%

  2. Monitor Management Performance Against Financial Objectives - 15%

  3. Provide Risk Oversight - 20%

  4. Contribute to Ensuring Effective Board Processes and Culture -12%

  5. Participate in Leadership Development, Evaluation, and Succession Planning - 20%

Exam Options (Testing Center or Online)

You will receive information on how to schedule and take the exam once you are eligible to schedule your Certification exam.

Testing Centers 

Pearson VUE is the global leader in computer-based testing and known for their convenient locations (over 300 throughout the country), state-of-the-art and secure testing facilities, and online exam proctoring sessions. Pearson VUE delivers the examination in a user-friendly format for candidates. During the exam appointment, there will be an opportunity to view a tutorial that provides an overview of the platform. If you would like to see a demonstration of Pearson VUE’s platform and navigation, visit https://wsr.pearsonvue.com/demo/.

OnVUE Online Proctored Exam

Pearson VUE also offers an online exam proctoring option through its OnVUE platform. OnVUE combines convenience, artificial intelligence, and live monitoring to provide the most up-to-date technology for exam delivery. The platform has enhanced security features, including face matching, ID verification, exam monitoring, browser lockdown, and more. If you would like to see a demonstration of Pearson VUE’s OnVUE platform and navigation, visit https://youtu.be/lmRrxzedal8.  

Before the scheduled exam date, you will need to perform a system test using the same computer and from the same location that you plan to use on the exam day. The system test will check for your computer readiness, including your microphone, Internet speed, and webcam. To complete the system test, visit http://www.pearsonvue.com/NACD/OnVUE and access the “Test my system” tab. Please also ensure there are no firewalls present, and that you possess the administrative rights on your computer needed to download the OnVUE software. 

Exam Experience

What to Expect with Pearson's OnVUE Online Exam


Pearson VUE offers an online exam proctoring option through its OnVUE platform. OnVUE combines convenience, artificial intelligence, and live monitoring to provide the most up-to-date technology for exam delivery. The platform has enhanced security features, including face matching, ID verification, exam monitoring, browser lockdown, and more.