Integrative and Functional Nutrition Certified Practitioner (IFNCP)

Credential Q & A Guide

The Integrative and Functional Nutrition Certified Practitioner Credential (IFNCP) establishes a new standard of professional practice for qualified health care practitioners.

Q – Who is eligible to submit an application for the IFNCP Credential?

A – Eligible persons are:

  1. Health care practitioners (i.e. RDNs, RNs, MDs, NDs, PAs, MSW, etc.)
  2. Dietetic interns
  3. Masters or Doctorate level students in the health science/nutrition field
  4. Health coaches and other allied health care providers who have successfully completed some nutrition course work (additional requirements may apply)

In cases where eligibility is uncertain, the Credential Board will determine on a case by case basis. If you have questions about eligibility, feel free to CONTACT US.

Q – What are the requirements for the “IFN Certified Practitioner” (IFNCP) Credential?

A – Credential applicants must:

  • complete all 5 Tracks within 24 months (for a description of each module within the Tracks, click here). IFNA does not permit skipping or “testing out” of any Tracks.
  • pass all module quizzes
  • submit an application (upon completion of the entire program)
  • pass the IFNCP Credential Exam

Q – Does the IFNCP Credential allow me to legally practice as a nutritionist?

A – The IFNCP Credential does not replace licensure, or qualify anyone to refer to themselves as a “licensed” nutritionist or dietitian.  However, earning the IFNCP Credential will distinguish you as someone who has passed a peer-reviewed board exam and has had advanced training in integrative and functional nutrition. This will certainly open many doors for you, however, you are responsible for staying within the limits of your scope of practice.

Q – How does this differ from the requirements for the IFNA Certificate of Training (COT)?

A – To earn the COT students are required to complete only Tracks 1-5 and the associated quizzes. There is no board exam required.

Q – How much time do IFNA students have to complete the IFNCP Credential training program? 

A – Students who wish to earn the IFNCP Advanced Practice Credential have 24 months to complete all 5 Tracks. The student’s 24-month time frame is based on the date of their initial Track registration with IFNA. Once the student reaches their deadline date, they will be unenrolled from all of the Tracks. The student will then have an additional 3 months to take their exam. If for unforeseen circumstances the student is unable to complete the required Tracks within the 24-month time frame, the student may request a one-time extension for a maximum of 3 months and will be required to register for the IFNCP Review Course. Then following the successful completion of Tracks 1-5, the student will still have only a maximum of 3 additional months to study for and take the IFNCP Exam.

Q – After I complete all requirements for the IFNCP credential, when am I eligible to take the IFNCP exam?

A – Once your application is approved, we will notify you by email and then you may register for the IFNCP Credential exam.
You will have an additional 3 months, from your 24 month deadline date, to take your exam online. Remember, your 24 month time frame is based on the date of your initial Track registration with IFNA. You will not be unenrolled before this time, however, to continue access beyond this date, be sure to register for Alumni Membership where you will have ongoing access to all IFNA tracks.

Q – Is there an application fee for the IFNCP Credential Exam?

A – Yes, there is a one-time NON-REFUNDABLE $149 application fee. Once your application is received and approved, you may register for the credential exam at

You will then be enrolled and can take the IFNCP Credential Exam at any time as the exam is open year round.

Q – Is there a separate IFNCP Credential Exam fee?

A – Yes, the cost of the exam fee is $399. If an applicant wishes to withdraw from the IFNCP Credential Exam but has already paid the IFNCP Credential Exam fee, a refund less $50 will be refunded to the applicant within 1 week of notification of withdrawal.

Q – What is the format of the IFNCP Credential Exam? 

A –  The IFNCP Credential Exam is online, non-proctored, open book and timed. There are 125 multiple choice questions. Some questions will be case scenarios and several multiple choice questions are associated with the case. The Credential Board peer-reviews and assists the co-founders with the credential process. For more information regarding the Credential Board members and their background please visit:

Q- What is the passing score of the IFNCP Credential Exam?

A A minimum score of 70% is required to pass.

Q – How long do I have to take the IFNCP Credential Exam?

A – You have 2 hours and 15 minutes (that’s 135 minutes or 2.25 hours) to complete the exam.  You will have the ability to go back and review your answers as often as you would like within this time frame.

Q- How do I prepare for the IFNCP Credential Exam?

A – There is an optional self-study review course to help students prepare for the Board exam.  It includes powerpoint presentations, an indexed study guide outline with key terms and concepts and a practice exam using the same format as the actual exam.  An orientation video is also available in the review course.  Access to the review course will terminate upon successful completion of the IFNCP Credential Exam. Click here to enroll:

Q – When can I expect my IFNCP Credential Exam results?

A – Results for the credential exam are not displayed immediately following exam submission. The turnaround time for the IFNCP Credential Exam results is approximately 24-48 hours (excluding weekends and holidays) from the date the exam is submitted. Please note that all exam scores are final and may not be contested.

Q – What happens if I do not pass the IFNCP Credential exam?

A – If you do not pass the exam you may retake it, however, you must first resubmit an application located on the registration page of the website. The application fee is waived; however, credential exam fees apply. Additionally, you will be required to take the IFNCP Review Course if you have not already registered for it. You’ll have a maximum of 30 days to retake the exam.

Q – Does the IFNCP Credential Exam encompass a foundational knowledge base and competencies for IFN practice?  

A – Yes, the IFNCP Credential Exam assesses if a candidate has the requisite clinical knowledge, skills and abilities to be a competent Integrative and Functional Nutrition practitioner.

Q – What are the requirements to maintain the IFNCP Credential?

A – 50 continuing professional education units (CPEUs) every 5 years from those providers listed on the IFNA Preferred Provider list and annual alumni membership dues. Should certification status lapse for any reason, IFNA forbids the use of the IFNCP Seal and designation. Your 5 year cycle begins on the day you pass the IFNCP board exam. Alternatively, you may retake the IFNCP board exam at the end of your 5 year cycle in lieu of CEUs or if you want to get recertified. If you choose to retake the exam, the IFNCP Review Course will be required.  Exam fees apply however, application fees are waived for exam retakes.

Q – What programs are on the IFNA Preferred Provider list?

A – IFNA Preferred Providers can be found here.

Q – Do IFNA students pay IFNA for the CPEUs or do they pay for the IFNA Preferred Provider directly?

A – IFNCP graduates do not pay IFNA for the CPEUs needed for their IFNCP credential.  IFNCP graduates pay the IFNA Preferred Provider directly for any CEUs earned or programs completed. IFNA Preferred Providers will also provide a Certificate of Completion to IFNCP graduates upon successful completion of CEUs earned.

Q – Is there access to any resources as an IFNCP Credential holder?

A – IFNCP graduates are eligible to enter their information in to the IFNA’s Graduate Directory.

Q – Does the IFNCP Advanced Practice Credential allow me to practice, counsel and treat patients?

A – The IFNCP Advanced Practice Credential is not equivalent to and does not replace the RDN credential or a license. Only qualified licensed practitioners may practice medical nutrition therapy. Check with your state’s department of professional regulation for details.

Here’s one map of the U.S. with the various state requirements. Click on the state for a summary of the laws and a link to each state’s specific rules