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
documentation
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. Detailed timelines for online or paper applications can be found below.

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

Online Application Timelines

Apply on or Between

Earliest Available Testing
Period Start Date

1st to 14th of any month

1st of next month

15th to end of any month

15th of next month

 Mailed Paper Application Timelines

Application is Due on or
Between

Earliest Available Testing
Period Start Date

1st to 14th of any month

15th of next month

15th to end of any month

1st of month after next

Note: Applicants who must submit specific documentation must allow extra time for application processing:

  • Candidates requesting a waiver due to having been found guilty of a felony, or pleaded guilty to a felony, or having a professional license, registration, or certification denied, revoked, suspended, or subjected to probationary conditions by a regulatory authority or certification board
  • Disabled persons who require special provisions on exam day
  • Non-recent graduates who do not submit an official transcript with their application

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. Submit the application and your candidate fee and include any documentation you gather in Step 2. Retain a copy of the completed application and documentation for your records. If you mail your application, do not send the Handbook with it.

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.)


Online Application Timelines

Apply Online on or
Between

Earliest Available 90-Day
Testing Period Start Date

January 1-14

February 1

January 15-31

February 15

February 1-14
March 1
February 15-28/29
March 15
March 1-14 April 1
March 15-31
April 15
April 1-14 May 1
April 15-30 May 15
May 1-14 June 1
May 15-31 June 15
June 1-14
July 1
June 15-30
July 15
July 1-14 August 1
July 15-31 August 15
August 1-14
September 1
August 15-31
September 15
September 1-14
October 1
September 15-30
October 15
October 1-14
November 1
October 15-31
November 15
November 1-14 December 1
November 15-30
December 15
December 1-14 January 1
December 15-31
January 15
 

Paper Application Timelines

Mailed Paper Application is
Due on or Before

Earliest Available 90-Day
Testing Period Start Date

January 1

February 1

January 15

February 15

February 1 March 1
February 15 March 15
March 1 April 1
March 15 April 15
April 1 May 1
April 15 May 15
May 1 June 1
May 15 June 15
June 1 July 1
June 15 July 15
July 1 August 1
July 15 August 15
August 1 September 1
August 15
September 15
September 1 October 1
September 15 October 15
October 1 November 1
October 15 November 15
November 1 December 1
November 15 December 15
December 1 January 1
December 15 January 15