Exam Application Steps

The following steps require that you first thoroughly read, then refer to, the Candidate Application and Handbook for the CMA (AAMA) Certification/Recertification Examination.

Step 1. Verify that You are Eligible for the Exam

Review Exam Eligibility Requirements for details.

Eligibility, documentation, and fees
Eligibility category Required
Fee (nonrefundable)
Category 1
Completing student or recent graduate of a CAAHEP or ABHES medical assisting program

Completing students may take the exam no more than 30 days prior to completing their formal education and practicum.
No documentation required. Your program completion—including a practicum—must be verified by your program director in order for you to receive your official scores and certification. $125
Category 2
Nonrecent graduate of a CAAHEP or ABHES medical assisting program
Official transcript $125 AAMA members

$250 nonmembers
Category 3
CMA (AAMA) recertificant
No documentation is necessary if you have provided your CMA (AAMA) certificate number and most recent certification or recertification date on the application. $125 AAMA members

$250 nonmembers

Step 2. Gather Your Documentation

Gather the appropriate documentation for your eligibility category.

(See “Required documentation” in the Handbook.)

Step 3. Review All Exam Policies and Information

When you submit your application, you are certifying that you have reviewed and accept all provisions under “Applicant agreement” and that you will abide by all the policies set forth in the Handbook, so it is important to read them thoroughly.

Step 4. Determine Start Date for 90-day Testing Period

Select the date that you wish your 90-day testing period to begin. This will determine when you should apply for the exam.

(See “Ninety-day testing period” and “Application timelines” in the Handbook.)

testing period
start date in
the month of

Application is due on

Mail application by


October 1 of prior year

September 20 of prior year


November 1 of prior year

October 20 of prior year


December 1 of prior year

November 20 of prior year


January 1 of same year

December 20 of prior year


February 1 of same year

January 20 of same year


March 1 of same year

February 20 of same year


April 1 of same year

March 20 of same year


May 1 of same year

April 20 of same year


June 1 of same year

May 20 of same year


July 1 of same year

June 20 of same year


August 1 of same year

July 20 of same year


September 1 of same year

August 20 of same year

Step 5. Monitor Your E-mail

Use an e-mail address that will be valid for the next year (school addresses often expire after graduation). Add CMAExam@aama-ntl.org to your approved e-mail list. Check your spam or junk e-mail folder for CMA Exam e-mails.

Step 6. Apply for the Exam

Apply Online Now

Or, download the Handbook and complete the application form at the back. Verify that you have written your first, middle, and last name as they appear on the government-issued photo ID that you must bring to the test center. Mail the application with your candidate fee and include any documentation you gather in Step 2. Retain a photocopy of the completed application and documentation for your records. Do not send the Handbook with your application.

Step 7. Make Name, E-mail, and Postal Address Corrections on a Timely Basis

Edit your profile online or e-mail us to update your contact information.

(See “Candidate name/address specifications” and “Test center identification requirements” in the Handbook.)

Step 8. Schedule Your Exam

Schedule your exam appointment as soon as possible after printing your Scheduling Permit.

(See “Appointment Scheduling Permit” and “Exam date scheduling” in the Handbook.)

Step 9. Prepare for the Exam

See “Study suggestions.” Also, thoroughly review the “Test center scheduling and policies,” so that your test session goes smoothly.

Step 10. Complete the Exam

After you have completed your exam, you will receive a pass/fail notification at the test center. You can view your exam status and scores at My Certification Information. Your official scores will display within eight weeks after your exam date.

Step 11. Watch for Your Official Score Reports

You’ll receive your official exam scores within 10 weeks of your exam date pending verification of program completion and/or fulfillment of all application requirements.

(See “Post-examination information and policies” in the Handbook.)

Step 12. Watch for Your Certificate

If you pass and are allowed to receive an official score report, your certificate and wallet card should arrive approximately 10 weeks after you receive your official scores. CMAs (AAMA) may view their certification status at My Certification Information. CMA (AAMA) certification is valid for a 60-month period.

(See “CMA (AAMA) recertification requirements” in the Handbook.)