When will I receive my IBCLC certificate by post?
The impact of COVID-19 necessitated changes to IBLCE’s typical process of disseminating IBCLC certificates. We understand that certificates are important to many of you, and IBLCE is working to provide them in alignment with current health guidelines. Please check the Examination Resource Centre for updates about when certificates will be sent by post.
For those who recently became certified or recertified, there are other options to verify your certification status now, including:
- Logging into your online account and see your status under “My Credentials.” You can find directions to access your account here.
- Submitting a Certification Verification Form so we can provide your certification status to whomever you authorise.
- Searching by IBCLC Credential Number (L-#) in the updated Public Registry.
- Contacting your IBLCE location for a letter verifying your IBCLC certification status that can be provided to third parties.
How do I schedule my appointment at a testing centre?
IBLCE will send you an Examination Authorisation Email with detailed information about the scheduling process, including a link to the Prometric webpage where you can schedule your appointment online. For some candidates, scheduling will need to be conducted by phone, so please consult your Examination Authorisation Email for specific instructions.
Before you schedule your examination appointment, please review IBLCE’s COVID-19 Examination Day Notice and contact your IBLCE location with any questions.
You will need to have your eligibility number (provided in the authorisation email) available at the time of scheduling.
Can I call Prometric to schedule my appointment at a testing centre?
If your Examination Authorisation Email indicates that you can schedule your appointment online through the Prometric website, then we strongly encourage you to do so, as Prometric has been experiencing extended customer service phone call wait times. Scheduling through the online portal is the most time-effective method; questions or issues with this process can be submitted to Prometric through the contact form on their website.
For some candidates, scheduling will need to be conducted by phone, so please consult your Examination Authorisation Email for specific instructions.
I’m having difficulty with scheduling my appointment at a test centre, as there seems to be no openings in my area. What are my next steps?
Prometric continues to follow local government guidelines, which may result in lower capacity and fewer available appointments at some test centres. The IBCLC certification programme is deemed essential so you will have access to all open test centres. We encourage you to continue to attempt to schedule your appointment, as additional appointments become available.
What measures related to COVID-19 are being implemented at testing centres/what should I be aware of when I go to the centre?
Prometric is taking new measures at test centres due to COVID-19. These measures are based on recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control (U.S.) and the World Health Organization (WHO) and updated based on the regulations of the local jurisdiction at the time. Below is an overview of these and we encourage you to check Prometric’s website frequently for updates, including in the days leading up to your examination date.
- Please note that IBLCE is continuing to require the wearing of masks by examinees while taking the IBCLC examination at testing centres. Candidates are required to wear masks or face coverings for the entirety of their time at the test centre, as well as complying with any other federal or local requirements in place at the time of testing.
- Please review this list of testing centres that have specific COVID-19-related requirements.
- Please note: you may need to lower/remove your mask briefly, when instructed, for a photo as part of the security check-in process.
- To help ensure the protection of its employees and test takers and to remain in compliance with governmental mandates and recommendations from the CDC, WHO, and Johns Hopkins University, safety practices will be enacted throughout the testing process and will be compliant with local government guidelines. Please note that due to local and regional mandates in some regions, a limited number of Prometric test centres will require candidates to present proof of vaccination in order to test. Candidates required to present vaccination documentation should bring forms provided to them by their healthcare provider at the time of vaccination.
- For candidates who are planning to travel to another state, province, or country to take your examination, please review Prometric’s travel advisory notice here.
- All surfaces and materials (e.g. desks, pens, etc.) are regularly cleaned between examination sessions, and scratch paper will be provided instead of note boards.
IMPORTANT NOTE: Candidates entering the test centre will by that act be agreeing to wear a mask or face covering and attesting to the following as posted on a door sign:
- You have NOT been diagnosed with COVID-19 within the past 5 days.
- You have NOT exhibited symptoms of COVID-19 within the past 5 days.
- You have NOT had close personal contact with someone who has a confirmed COVID-19 diagnosis within the past 5 days.
- You have NOT traveled from an area that would require mandatory quarantine based on local guidelines.*
* If you are planning to travel to another state, province or country to take your examination,
please be advised that you should check for any travel advisories issued by the appropriate
governmental authorities before your travel begins. In some cases, regulations require
mandatory self-imposed quarantine based on where you traveled from. It is the responsibility of
each individual to comply with travel and quarantine restrictions applicable to them given their
individual circumstances. Test centres reserve the right to turn away any candidate who is noncompliant with local regulations.
Note that Prometric updates these as appropriate, so please review the Prometric website and the COVID-19 processes regularly leading up to your appointment day. You can also view the information that the World Health Organization has published about international travel in relationship to COVID-19.
If you have any questions about this process and/or about your ability to meet these requirements, please contact your IBLCE location.
Can I choose to take the examination via Live Remote Proctoring instead of going to a testing centre?
If you are taking the examination in English, your computer passes the System Readiness Check, and your workspace meets the environmental criteria, then you would be eligible to choose LRP. Review IBLCE’s information about your examination options here.
Further information about taking the IBCLC examination with LRP can be found here.
I have been approved for a breast/chestfeeding break during my examination. Is this still an option at a test centre?
Yes, you may still take the examination at a test centre with the approved breast/chestfeeding break. IBLCE works closely with the testing vendor to secure a private location for you to breast/chestfeed or pump. The private location may be a private room or a privacy tent. The testing vendor and IBLCE will work with you to locate the testing centre that is closest to your home that can offer a breast/chestfeeding accommodation. Please refer to your Examination Authorisation Email for additional information.
What happens if I schedule an examination at a test centre and it closes due to COVID-19? Will I have to pay a rescheduling fee?
If your examination appointment is impacted due to site closures or state restrictions, you will receive an email notification informing you that your appointment has been cancelled with instructions for how to reschedule for a future date. No rescheduling fees will be applied.
How do I know if Live Remote Proctoring for the examination is an option for me?
For those who are taking the examination in English, Live Remote Proctoring (LRP) will be an option. Currently, IBLCE’s third-party testing vendor only offers LRP in English. LRP will require the candidate to meet the technical and environmental criteria for testing in their home.
Please view this graphic with your options.
Further information about taking the IBCLC examination with LRP can be found here.
What is Live Remote Proctoring?
LRP allows you to take a professional, computer-based test on your own computer equipment in your home, or other location that meets the workspace criteria, with security and testing practices in place that are similar to that of a testing centre.
All examinations are continuously monitored to ensure the validity of the results.
As an LRP test taker, you are not alone: if you have a question (not related to the examination content) or need support, you can speak to or message your Remote Proctor at any time.
What can I expect if I decide to use Live Remote Proctoring for the IBCLC examination?
Prometric will provide you with detailed information in your appointment confirmation email that will explain how to download and install the testing vendor’s ProProctor application, as well as give you an in-depth overview of the process.
The LRP experience will be similar to your experience at a test centre. After you launch the examination application, you will start with check-in and security measures (a Readiness Agent will check your environment and person).
Once you start your examination, your device will be locked so you only have access to the test items. During the examination, candidates may flag questions within each section for review and return to them later. For the purpose of making notes, candidates may access electronic scratch paper.
You may only leave your workspace during the scheduled break; you may not take an unscheduled break when taking the examination via LRP. Even during your scheduled break, you may only leave the view of your webcam after you have the acknowledgement of your proctor. Please contact your remote proctor before leaving your workspace or if you have have any questions about LRP rules to avoid dismissal from the examination.
You will be on webcam with the remote proctor for the entire time of your examination.
For further information regarding IBLCE examination policies and examination format, please see the examination FAQs on our website for more information.
If you have a question during your examination (not related to examination content), you will be able to speak to or message your Remote Proctor at any time.
What kind of security procedure should I prepare for?
LRP does include a readiness and security check before you begin the examination. Be prepared for Prometric to take pictures of your two unexpired IDs. The primary ID must be a valid, unexpired government-issued identification that includes your name, current photograph, and signature, and the secondary ID must have either your name and signature or your name and current photograph.
You must also show the Readiness Agent a view of the entire workspace where you will be taking the examination. For examination security purposes and is typical in the professional testing industry, your Readiness Agent will also ask you to stand up to do a scan of your person. You will be required to show your ankles, empty and turn all pockets inside-out, and raise shirt sleeves above your wrists. If you are wearing eyeglasses you will be required to remove them for visual inspection.
Before checking in to the examination, clear your workspace, remove any large jewellery, empty your pockets, and pull your hair back. Make sure to have the two forms of government-issued identification on hand. This will help to reduce the amount of time it takes to get through your security check.
You may only leave your workspace during the scheduled break; you may not take an unscheduled break when taking the examination via LRP. Even during your scheduled break, you may only leave the view of your webcam after you have the acknowledgement of your proctor. Please contact your remote proctor before leaving your workspace to avoid dismissal from the examination. When you return from your scheduled break, the proctor will repeat the security check of your workspace and person.
Other information regarding prohibited items and actions will be provided with the in-depth view of the testing process when you receive your appointment confirmation email.
What LRP rules should I be aware of to avoid dismissal from the examination?
The IBCLC is a professional credential, and examination security is important to the integrity of the credential. IBCLCs’ work impacts the health of infants and parents, and therefore verification of their knowledge is of great importance. Please carefully read the IBCLC examination administration rules:
- Candidates must not leave the examination workspace. The only time permitted for a break is in between Part 1 and Part 2 of the examination. Candidates must alert the proctor before moving away from the web-camera during the break and after finalising the examination. Leaving the view of the web-camera without acknowledgement from the proctor, including during your scheduled break, will result in an immediate dismissal from your examination.
- No third party, including other people or pets, may be present in the room or enter the room during the examination. If this occurs, your examination will be terminated.
- Turning off lighting or computer audio, moving from your original testing location, or speaking to or receiving aid from other individuals is strictly prohibited and will result in immediate dismissal from the examination.
- A visual inspection will be conducted before you start the examination as part of the security protocol.
- Candidates found in possession of electronic devices of any kind, phones, or study guides during the examination or during breaks will be immediately dismissed and their examination will not be scored.
- Light clothing items removed for comfort such as sweaters, suit jackets, scarves, etc., must be hung on your chair, not placed in your lap or on the workstation desktop. Outerwear such as heavy coats, parkas, raincoats, etc., is not permitted in the immediate testing area.
- Only pre-approved comfort aids or pre-approved medical aids/devices are permitted into the workspace. Please check if you have pre-approved accommodations listed in your Examination Authorisation Email.
- Questions concerning the examination content are not permitted. Remote proctors are not allowed to provide interpretation or clarification of examination questions and/or define words.
- Cheating will not be tolerated and, if discovered, will result in a candidate’s scores being cancelled or her/his certification being revoked in accordance with IBLCE policies and procedures and/or legal action against the candidate, including criminal prosecution.
- Eating, drinking, smoking, and chewing gum are prohibited during the examination.
- Written notes, published materials, and other testing aids are strictly prohibited during the examination and during your scheduled break.
- You are not to read aloud while taking the examination.
- You will be asked to agree to all the testing vendor’s testing regulations before your LRP examination. Failure to comply with these regulations may result in dismissal from your examination.
- Candidates are required to be professional, civil, and respectful at all times while testing.
- Candidates who finish the examination early may leave the workspace. The proctor must be alerted.
What do I need to do to set up my computer system for success with Live Remote Proctoring?
You will need the following system requirements to be able to take the IBCLC examination with Live Remote Proctoring:
- Computer/Laptop: You may use a laptop or desktop computer. Dual-monitor configurations are not permitted (i.e. a desktop with two monitors or a laptop with a separate monitor.) *iPad/Android tablets and Chromebooks are not currently supported. Microsoft Surface or similar can be used only when configured in laptop mode.
- Web-Camera: You will need a movable webcam for the check-in process. A web-camera in a laptop is acceptable, as long as you are able to move the laptop to show the entire room. You may not have more than one web-camera in use at the same time.
- Web-Camera Resolution: 640 X 480p
- Power Source: A laptop/PC plugged directly into a power source, not attached to a docking station.
- Screen Resolution: 1024 x 768 minimum resolution
- Operating System: Windows 8.1 or higher / MacOS 10.13 or higher (ProProctor currently does not support Linux products.)
- Web Browser: current version of Google Chrome
- Internet Connection Speed: 1.0 mbps or greater
- Internet Connection: Your internet connectivity can be impacted by a number of factors. If you are using Wi-Fi, please position your device where you have a strong signal. For the best experience, use an Ethernet cable to connect directly to the router. Mobile hot-spots are not able to be used.
- Wi-Fi provided by a mobile phone hotspot will not be an option as mobile phones are prohibited from the testing environment.
- If possible, limit other family members from using up internet bandwidth during your examination with streaming services, social media, etc.
- Audio Hardware: Working speakers and microphone required, wired headphones and microphone allowed.
To check your if your system meets these requirements, you can click here for a System Readiness Check.
IBLCE recommends performing a System Readiness Check before scheduling for an LRP examination. You will also need to download the ProProctor proctoring software before your examination day. Prometric will provide an appointment confirmation email with details about this process.
What happens if I encounter technical difficulties during the examination?
If you encounter technical difficulties during your examination, please contact Prometric. You may attempt to resume your examination. If you are unable to resume your examination within a reasonable time, you will no longer be able to access your examination. Should this occur, please contact your IBLCE regional office to learn of your options.
Where can I take my Live Remote Proctored examination?
While many candidates will prefer to take the examination from home, you can take your examination anywhere that meets the workspace criteria below:
- Testing location must be indoors (walled), well lit, free from background noise and disruptions. Please note that airwalls are not permitted (many hotels use airwalls to configure space).
- No third party may be present in the room or enter the room for the duration of the examination. If this occurs, you will be dismissed from the examination. Note that for breast/chestfeeding accommodations, these breaks will be taken out of the view of the webcam.
- Your workspace and surrounding area must be free of pens, paper, electronic devices, etc. No content that could potentially provide an unfair advantage during your examination, including that posted on walls or within your immediate area, can be present during your examination session.
- Please note that testing via LRP requires downloading the ProProctor software to a computer, so if you are using a computer that is not your own, check to see if this is possible to do on the computer you will be using.
Please note: To preserve the integrity of the IBCLC credential and to provide appropriate separation between IBLCE and educational organisations/individuals who offer test preparatory materials or training, candidates sitting via Live Remote Proctoring (LRP) are not to take the IBCLC examination in a location that is owned or operated by an educational entity that offers IBCLC test preparatory materials or training courses.
Will IBLCE help me find a suitable location to take the examination via LRP?
When choosing to sit the examination via LRP, it is the responsibility of the candidate to find a location that meets the workspace criteria noted above. IBLCE is unable to assist in securing a testing location that meets the requirements for LRP examination administration. If a candidate is unsure if their workspace will meet the workspace testing requirements or is unable to find an appropriate location, they should plan to sit the examination at a testing centre.
What is permitted in the room/near my workspace during a Live Remote Proctored examination?
Your workspace and surrounding area must be free of pens, paper, electronic devices, etc. No content that could potentially provide an unfair advantage during your examination, including that posted on walls or within your immediate area, can be present during your examination session.
You may have two tissues at your workstation.
If you need access to additional items for medical reasons, please contact your regional location to request a specific accommodation. The items listed here are permissible without a specific accommodation, but will be inspected during your security check.
Can I take a break during my LRP examination?
There is one scheduled break between Part 1 and Part 2 of the examination. You may only leave your workspace during the scheduled break; you may not take an unscheduled break. Even during your scheduled break, you may only leave the view of your webcam after you have the acknowledgement of your proctor. Please contact your remote proctor before leaving your workspace or if you have have any questions about LRP rules to avoid dismissal from the examination. If you leave the view of your webcamera during your scheduled break, you will be required to go through the check-in process again to be re-admitted to the examination.
You are not permitted to access electronic devices, such as mobile phones, or study guides at any time during your examination, including during your break.
Additionally, while many accommodations are possible when choosing to test via LRP, extra breaks are not permitted. Candidates with an approved accommodation allowing additional unscheduled breaks during the examination are required to test at a testing centre.
What if I applied to take the examination in another language, but I’d like to take a Live Remote Proctored examination in English?
Please submit this change to the IBLCE location that serves you as soon as possible.
What type of computer equipment works for Live Remote Proctoring?
You will need a laptop or desktop with a single monitor. Dual monitors are not permitted. Tablets may not be used with LRP. Microsoft Surface or similar can be used only when configured in laptop mode. Please see the FAQ “What do I need to do to set up my computer system for success with Live Remote Proctoring?” for additional information on how to set up your computer system for success for LRP.
May I use wifi provided by a mobile phone hot spot to take my examination?
Mobile phones are not permitted in the examination room/at your workspace for the IBCLC examination, whether you are taking it at a test centre or via LRP. Candidates found in possession of and/or using such devices during the examination or during breaks will be dismissed and their examinations will not be scored.
Additionally, wifi from mobile phone hot spots is not always reliable. Please see the FAQ “What do I need to do to set up my computer system for success with Live Remote Proctoring?”for additional information on how to set up your computer system for success for LRP and to complete a system check.
Is it guaranteed that I can get an appointment via Live Remote Proctoring?
LRP scheduling is based on proctor availability. We recommend that you request your appointment as soon as possible after receiving your IBLCE Examination Authorisation Email.
How does scheduling a Live Remote Proctoring examination work?
The process is very similar to scheduling in a test centre, but you will select a time and not a location. There will be a section on the IBLCE homepage of the Prometric website for scheduling a remote proctored examination.
I have a question about the time of my examination appointment. How can I confirm the time of my appointment?
During the appointment selection process, you will be required to select a time zone. Please note that your appointment time will be set using 24-hour clock in the selected time zone.
You can confirm your examination appointment time here with your confirmation number. If you still have questions, please contact Prometric directly. You can find contact information at the bottom of this page.
I have been approved for a breast/chestfeeding break during my examination. May I use Live Remote Proctoring?
Yes, you may use LRP and take a breastfeeding break. Please note that you will of course be taking the break outside of the view of the webcam. Specific information regarding this accommodation will be included in your IBLCE Examination Authorisation Email if you have been approved for a breast/chestfeeding break.
You can find the IBLCE® Procedures for Breast/Chestfeeding During Examination Administration here.
I have been approved for an accommodation during my examination. May I use Live Remote Proctoring?
Many accommodations are possible for use with LRP. Specific information regarding your approved accommodations will be included in your examination authorisation email.
What testing modalities will the March and September 2023 examinations be administered in?
Both the March and September 2023 examinations will be administered at testing centres around the world. For those who are taking the examination in English, Live Remote Proctoring (LRP) will also be an option. Currently, IBLCE’s testing vendor only offers LRP in English. Live Remote Proctoring will require the candidate to meet the technical and environmental criteria for testing in their home.
Please review this graphic with your options.
IBLCE has approved the use of LRP for 2023 IBCLC examination administrations in light of the ongoing global pandemic. Any use of LRP for IBCLC examinations in 2024 and beyond will be subject to further review.
What financial options do I have if I need to withdraw or cancel my examination appointment?
IBLCE has several options available to you regarding withdrawing or cancelling your examination appointment. Please see the full list of your financial options here.
When will I be able to schedule my examination appointment?
You will receive an Examination Authorisation Email from IBLCE according to the timeframe for which you have been accepted for the IBCLC examination. This email will provide you with detailed information that you will need to schedule your appointment. Please do not attempt to schedule your examination appointment before receiving this communication.
IBLCE will start sending Examination Authorisation Emails for the March 2023 IBCLC examination in February 2023.
If you have any questions, please contact your IBLCE regional location.
What happens if I or a family member gets COVID-19 near the time of the examination and I cannot take the examination?
IBLCE has an extraordinary circumstances policy which will provide for a deferral for health issues for you or your family, and this also specifically contemplates health issues related to COVID-19.
I am working on earning my clinical practice hours for IBCLC eligibility. May I do that remotely at this time?
Now through September 30, 2023, you may earn clinical practice hours remotely. Please see IBLCE’s Advisory Opinion on Telehealth (Issued on April 3, 2020) as well as the June 2022 Updated Interim Guidance on the Use of Technology to Meet Pathways 1, 2, and 3 Clinical Practice Requirements (Reissued on June 30, 2022) on the IBLCE website. Additionally, if you are pursuing IBCLC eligibility via Pathway 3, please see the Pathway 3 Plan Guide (Updated May 9, 2020).
Is IBLCE extending the deadline for recertification by CERPs?
This deadline remains September 30, 2023. As a service to certificants, IBLCE has a section on its website that provides information about online CERPs opportunities in a variety of languages and regarding a variety of subjects, including ethics offerings.
You may also wish to contact your international or national professional association for other online opportunities.
IBLCE has an extraordinary circumstances policy, which has been broadened expressly in light of COVID-19. If you or an immediate family member is impacted by COVID-19 in terms of health, or you or your partner is unemployed due to COVID-19, the extraordinary circumstances policy is available to you. This simply requires that you apply for it and provide documentation along with proof of completing 15 L-CERPs. Please review the IBLCE Recertification by CERPs Extension Request Policy for more information.
I have some clinical questions regarding COVID-19. Can you answer them for me?
In light of the unprecedented situation, IBLCE quickly disseminated guidance via social media from the World Health Organization regarding COVID-19, particularly when WHO first declared COVID-19 a pandemic.
As a certification board, IBLCE does not typically provide guidance to clinical questions. If you have questions regarding COVID-19, you are encouraged, as set forth in the IBCLC guiding practice documents, to consult evidence-based information.
You may also wish to contact a professional association.
What has IBLCE done in light of COVID-19 to address IBCLC, candidate, and public needs?
- On April 3, 2020, IBLCE disseminated an Advisory Opinion on Telehealth as it relates to IBCLC practice and the guiding documents for the IBCLC.
- As a service to IBCLCs and candidates during the COVID-19 public health emergency, the IBLCE team quickly created a new section of the IBLCE website listing online educational opportunities providing CERPs and lactation specific education. There are over 200 offerings in a variety of languages and searchable by language, provider, date, and topic.
- In April and May 2020, IBLCE issued Interim Guidance on the Use of Technology to Meet Pathways 1, 2, and 3 Clinical Practice Requirements. This interim guidance was reissued on October 6, 2020, and was to remain in effect through September 30, 2021, subject to further review. In August 2021, IBLCE further extended the guidance through September 30, 2022, and added a reference list to create the August 2021 Updated Interim Guidance on the Use of Technology to Meet Pathways 1, 2, and 3 Clinical Practice Requirements. In June 2022, IBLCE further extended the guidance through September 30, 2023, in the June 2022 Updated Interim Guidance on the Use of Technology to Meet Pathways 1, 2, and 3 Clinical Practice Requirements. In light of the sustained impacts of COVID-19, this interim guidance will continue to allow those working towards eligibility for the IBCLC to do so remotely.
- In light of COVID-19, IBLCE provided guidance for professionals and families from the World Health Organization via social media. Also, although not typically done by a certification body, IBLCE provided global information to address food insecurity so that IBCLCs contacted by families would have ready access to referral sources if needed.
More examination FAQs can be found here.