PMHNP Practice Test

Prepare for your test with realistic questions.

Formerly known as Family Psychiatric–Mental Health Nurse Practitioner, the Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurse Practitioner (Across the Lifespan) certification exam allows nurse practitioners to become board-certified (PMHNP-BC) to work in a variety of settings and care for mental health patients of all ages.

Click “Start Test” above to take a free PMHNP practice test!

PMHNP Eligibility

To be eligible for the exam, you must meet all of the following requirements:

  • You must hold a current, active, and unencumbered RN license
  • You must hold a master’s degree, DNP from a PMHNP, or post-grad certificate from a program at an accredited institution
  • You must complete three separate graduate-level APRN Core courses
    • One advanced physiology/pathophysiology course
    • One advanced health assessment course
    • One Advanced pharmacology course
  • You must have studied health promotion/maintenance and differential diagnosis and disease management
  • You must have clinical training in at least two psychotherapeutic treatment modalities

PMHNP Exam Outline

The PMHNP exam contains 175 multiple-choice questions, 25 of which are unscored, and you will be given a 3.5-hour time limit. The unscored questions are used by the administrators to evaluate questions for future versions of the exam, and you will not know which questions are scored or unscored during the exam.

The exam is split into five content domains, and each domain contains some number of knowledge questions and skill questions.

exam outline for the PMHNP exam, which contains 175 multiple-choice questions and has a time limit of 3.5 hours

I. Scientific Foundation (33 scored questions)

The questions in this category assess your advanced physical assessment skills. You will also be tested on your knowledge of the following:

  • Advanced pharmacology
  • Advanced pathophysiology
  • Advanced psychopharmacology
  • Psychogenomics
  • Neuroanatomy
  • Neurodevelopment
  • Neurophysiology

II. Advanced Practice Skills (41 scored questions)

The questions in this category assess your skills in the following areas:

  • Mental status exams
  • Clinical interviewing
  • Risk assessment
  • Psychiatric emergency management
  • Psychoeducation
  • Substance use screening tool selection and interpretation
  • Mental health screening tool selection and interpretation
  • Recovery and resilience promotion
  • Health promotion and disease prevention

III. Diagnosis and Treatment (33 scored questions)

The questions in this category assess your knowledge of complementary/alternative treatments and DSM-5-TR diagnostic criteria. You will also be tested on your skills in the following areas:

  • Evidence-based practice
  • Diagnostic and lab test selection and interpretation
  • Pharmacotherapeutic management
  • Diagnosis
  • Psychopharmacotherapeutic management

IV. Psychotherapy and Related Theories (26 scored questions)

The questions in this category assess your therapeutic alliance development and management skills. You will also be tested on your knowledge of the following:

  • Change theories
  • Family theories
  • Psychotherapy principles
  • Developmental theories

V. Ethics, Legal Principles, and Cultural Care (17 scored questions)

The questions in this category assess your knowledge of the Patient’s Bill of Rights, the scope of confidentiality, and the ANA Scope and Standards of Practice. You will also be tested on your skills in the following areas:

  • Equity, diversity, and inclusion
  • Patient advocacy
  • Cultural and spiritual competence
  • Ethics in clinical decision-making

Check Out Mometrix's Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurse Practitioner Study Guide

Get practice questions, video tutorials, and detailed study lessons

Get Your Study Guide
 Study Guide

PMHNP Exam Registration

To register for the exam, you must submit an application via the ANCC website. Your application should include all of the necessary proof-of-eligibility documentation and the examination fee. The examination fee differs depending on your membership status:

PMHNP Exam Fees
MembershipExam Fee
APNA member$220
AANP student member$290
ANA member$295
AANP member$340
ISPN member
GAPNA member

Once your application is approved, you will receive a confirmation email containing your Authorization to Test (ATT) and information about scheduling your examination appointment.

Test Day

You should arrive at the testing center 15-30 minutes before your scheduled exam appointment time. Once you arrive, you will be asked to provide two forms of identification, one of which must be a government-issued photo ID.

You will be asked to leave all personal items such as cell phones, coats, wallets, food/drink, and notes in your car or in a secure locker outside the testing area.

Once the check-in process is complete, you will be led to your testing station and given a short tutorial on the testing system before beginning your exam.

How the PMHNP Exam is Scored

The PMHNP exam is scored using a criterion-based scoring system, which means that a group of ANCC subject-matter experts has evaluated the difficulty of the entire pool of questions and determined a passing score. The passing score is set using the modified-Angoff method, which means that your score is based solely upon your performance, and no other test-taker’s scores are taken into account.

Your score is reported on a scale of 1-500, with 350 being the minimum passing score.

You will be able to see your preliminary scores as soon as you complete the exam. You will have to sign into your AANC account to view your final score report.

Online PMHNP Prep Course

If you want to be fully prepared, Mometrix offers an online Psychiatric and Mental Health Nurse Practitioner prep course. The course is designed to provide you with any and every resource you might want while studying. The PMHNP course includes:

  • Review Lessons Covering Every Topic
  • 700+ PMHN Practice Questions
  • More than 550 Electronic Flashcards
  • Over 30 Video Tutorials
  • Money-back Guarantee
  • Free Mobile Access
  • and More!

The PMHNP prep course is designed to help any learner get everything they need to prepare for their PMHNP exam. Click below to check it out!

20% off coupon for the PMHNP online course.

Check Out Mometrix's Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurse Practitioner Flashcards

Get complex subjects broken down into easily understandable concepts

Get Your Flashcards



What is a PMHNP?


A psychiatric-mental health nurse practitioner (PMHNP) provides advanced care covering a large range of mental health services to a wide variety of patients and families.


How many questions are on the PMHNP exam?


There are 175 multiple-choice questions on the exam.


How long is the PMHNP exam?


The time limit for the exam is 3.5 hours.


What is the passing score for the PMHNP exam?


To pass the exam, you must achieve a scaled score of at least 350.


How much does the PMHNP exam cost?


The examination fee differs depending on your membership status.

By Kate Nockunas

Kate has been Mometrix’s Nursing and Medical Editor for over four years. She has a bachelor’s degree in Communications from Vanderbilt University, a bachelor’s degree in Nursing from Marymount University, and a master’s degree in Education from Johns Hopkins. Kate is a critical care registered nurse who still works occasionally in the ICU and PACU.


by Mometrix Test Preparation | This Page Last Updated: March 5, 2024