The NCCT Surgical Tech refers to a Surgical Technologist who has obtained certification from the National Center for Competency Testing (NCCT), officially known as the Tech in Surgery – Certified or simply TS-C (NCCT).

This credential is awarded to individuals who have successfully passed the NCCT certification exam, demonstrating their knowledge and skills in surgical technology.  

In this article, we will discuss NCCT Certification for Surgical Techs, the requirements, exam structure, and details, states accepting the certification, how can you obtain one, what if you fail; and much more.

Let’s start –

NCCT Surgical Tech

NCCT Certification for Surgical Techs

When you’re pursuing a career as a surgical technologist, obtaining the right certification is crucial. One common certification option is the NCCT Surgical Tech certification.

The National Center for Competency Testing (NCCT) offers a well-recognized certification for Surgical Techs that can open doors to better job opportunities and higher earning potential.

Becoming a Certified Surgical Technologist is a significant achievement, as it demonstrates your competence and commitment to ensuring the safety and well-being of patients in the operating room.


-> What is a Surgical Tech?

-> What Does a Surgical Tech Do?

-> How to Become a Surgical Tech?


Before you embark on the journey to become an NCCT Certified Surgical Technologist, you must meet certain eligibility requirements.

To be eligible for the exam, you’ll need to meet specific requirements –

  • Graduation or upcoming graduation from a CAAHEP or ABHES-accredited Surgical Technology program
  • Or through Military training or Experience under an RN
  • Submission of your transcripts, signed by the program director, to the NCCT within five years from your program completion
  • Completion of a minimum of 30 surgical cases during your clinical externship

Exam Structure and Details

The NCCT Surgical Tech certification exam is designed to evaluate your knowledge and skills as a Surgical Technologist. The questions are multiple-choice, offering four answer options each.

The exam tests various crucial areas for a Surgical Tech, such as pre-operative preparation, intraoperative procedures, and post-operative responsibilities.

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-> Online Surgical Tech Programs

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NCCT Exam Structure

  • Number of Questions: 175 (25 unscored)
  • Total Time: 4 hours
  • Overall Passing Score: scaled score of 70
  • Exam Fees: $199

Title – What Do You Call Yourself After You Pass NCCT Certification?  

Pros And Cons Of Being A Surgical Tech

The designation for individuals who have successfully completed the NCCT certification exam for Surgical Techs is TS-C (NCCT).

This credential, officially known as the Tech in Surgery – Certified or simply TS-C (NCCT), is awarded to individuals who have successfully passed the NCCT certification exam, demonstrating their knowledge and skills in surgical technology.

Read More:

-> Surgical Tech Salary

-> Surgical Tech Requirements

States Accepting NCCT Certification for Surgical Techs

Almost all states accept the NCCT certification for Surgical Techs, opening doors for you to practice your profession.

However, the acceptance of NCCT certification varies from state to state and is subject to change. So, it’s essential to know where your certification will be recognized.

As of now, many states don’t even require certification for Surgical Techs. The others that do, accept the NCCT Certification besides NCST and CST certification.

How to Obtain a NCCT Surgical Tech Certification?

When embarking on a career as a surgical technologist, one of the essential considerations is certification.

The NCCT certification is widely recognized allowing Surgical Techs to work in various healthcare settings, contributing to the safety and efficiency of surgical procedures.

This certification is an essential step in establishing a successful career as a Surgical Technologist. Let’s discuss how can you obtain one with this step-by-step guide –

Step 1 – Meet the Eligibility

Firstly, you need to ensure that you meet the NCCT’s eligibility requirements, including completing an accredited Surgical Technology program.

Step 2 – Apply for the NCCT Exam

If you meet the eligibility, you can fill out the NCCT application form and pay the required fees. Wait for your ATT notification and schedule your exam date at an authorized Pearson VUE testing center.

What does a Surgical Tech do? Duties

Step 3 – Study and Pass the Exam

You need to dedicate sufficient time to prepare for the NCCT exam. Also utilize study materials, practice exams, and revise your educational resources. Upon passing, you will receive your “Tech in Surgery TS-C (NCCT)” credential.

Step 4 – Recertification

To keep your NCCT certification up to date, you must fulfill certain requirements, which include completing a set number of continuing education (CE) hours each year and paying the annual recertification fee.

NCCT provides two options for meeting your CE requirements – Access to their online CE library, or Submission of “external” CE activities, which may be subject to auditing.

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What If You Fail?

If you don’t achieve a passing score on your first attempt, don’t be discouraged. Instead, focus on areas where you need improvement and use additional study resources to enhance your knowledge.

To pass the NCCT exam you have 4 attempts. If you meet the eligibility, you can appear for the exam. But if you fail, then for your 2nd and 3rd attempts you may retest after 30 days. For you to use the last attempt you must wait for 1 year. 

Also Read:

-> AST Surgical Tech 

-> Surgical Tech Study Guide


Whether you’re just starting your journey or looking to enhance your professional credentials, getting certified is the best route to take in the field of surgical technology.  

The NCCT certification provides a reputable and widely recognized path to becoming a Certified Surgical Technologist in the United States.

And now with a comprehensive understanding of the requirements, exam structure, and post-certification implications, you should be well-prepared to embark on your journey to becoming a Tech in Surgery TS-C (NCCT).

Overall, your future as a skilled Surgical Tech awaits, with numerous opportunities in the dynamic field of healthcare and surgical technology. Good Luck!  


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About the Author
Grant founded with a purpose-driven mission: make college accessible and affordable for everyone. After graduating college with an overwhelming amount of debt, he was determined to change how students embark on their education. He's a frequent speaker and author in higher education, and has been featured in Forbes, Bloomberg Businessweek, Business Insider, American Express, AOL, MSN, Thrive Global, Reader's Digest, Inside Higher Ed, Evolllution, EducationDive, and nearly 100 radio shows and podcasts.