Find RN schools

Registered Nurse Certification in Iowa

Registered nurse certification in Iowa aids in enhancing the knowledge, skills and abilities of the students making them master in the nursing practice. The Iowa Board of Nursing issues the RN license. The Board aims at safeguarding the health and well-being of the public.

Requirements for Acquiring RN License for the U.S. Graduates

The applicants applying either by endorsement or examination have to submit the following documents to the Board:

  • Criminal offense information
    • Photocopy of the court records, i.e. judgment entry, sentencing order or trial information.
    • Written assessment of your life conviction, including the employment history.

1. By Examination

In addition to the above requisites, the candidates applying for licensure by examination are supposed to accomplish the following requirements:

  • Complete graduation from the recognized nursing program.
  • Pass the NCLEX-RN exam.
  • You must not have any past criminal record.
  • Application fee of $143 (includes application fee of $93, fingerprint fee and waiver fee of $50) that may be submitted online, or in the form of money order, personal check or cashier’s check made payable to the Iowa Board of Nursing.

2. By Endorsement

Besides meeting the general requirements described above, the aspirants must also mandatorily complete the below given formalities.

  • A non-refundable fee of $169 through cashier’s check, money order, personal check or online, payable to the Iowa Board of Nursing.
  • Submit verification of their original license.

Procedure of Obtaining the RN License in Iowa

1. By Examination

The step-by step procedure for obtaining registered nurse license by examination is:

  • Register yourself with the Pearson VUE to take the NCLEX-RN exam. After receiving the authorization, schedule and take the test.
  • As the fingerprint cards are not available online, request for a fingerprint card or the complete application package at the following email

Individuals, who are educated and certified in another country, can apply for licensure by examination in Iowa through the following procedure:

  • If your native language is not English, then you must pass any one of the following exam with the minimum score:
    • TOEFL (Test of English as a foreign Language)- minimum score of 83 (iBT), 207 (Computer test) and 540 (paper test)
    • IELTS (International English Language Testing Service)-minimum score 6.5
  • The applicant must complete Professional report application of the CGFNS (Commission on Graduates of Foreign Nursing Schools) Credentials Evaluation Service (CES) and request CGFNS to submit the report directly to the Board.

Upon completion of the above requirements, an application for RN licensure by examination and the registration materials will be sent by the Board. The application may be submitted by using the online services.

2. By Endorsement
The process for getting RN license by endorsement is:

  • If you have applied online, the fingerprint card will be mailed to the address provided by you on the application.
  • If you have applied by paper application, request for fingerprint card or call your local police to check if they have the Blue Applicant fingerprint card.

Verification of the RN Certificate in IA

The applicants can use any of the two options for the sake of verification of their certificate:

Note: If your original state of licensure is one among the list provided below, you are requested to use the paper application:

Alabama, California RN & VN, Hawaii, Georgia RN & PN, Kansas, Illinois, Louisiana PN, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia RN

Temporary License

The applicants may obtain a 30-days validity temporary license to practice nursing in the state. But for this, they are expected to fulfill some requirements.

  • Complete application for licensure by endorsement either online or by using paper application.
  • Submit fingerprint cards.
  • Complete Waiver form.
  • Pay $169, which includes the fees for endorsement, as well as fees for criminal history background check. The payment can be made online or through cashier’s check, money order or personal check to the Iowa Board of Nursing.
  • Submit verification of licensure.

Duplicate License

The Board issues a duplicate license within 14 days of receiving the application and fees. You’ll have to pay $20 for this purpose.

Click the following link to download the application form:

Submit the notarized application form with the complete details to the following mailing address:

Iowa Board of Nursing
River Point Business Park
400 SW 8th Street, Suite B
Des Moines, Iowa- 50309-4685


To review the complete fee structure, you may click on the below link:

quick RN guide links