Explore some of the more frequently asked questions about the NCCO certification program below.
Becoming an NCCO
How do I earn the NCCO designation?
Individuals need to successfully pass four exams to become a NAFCU Certified Compliance Officer (NCCO).
Does my credit union or organization need to be a member of NAFCU for me to pursue the NCCO designation?
No, the NCCO program is open to everyone. Any credit union professional who desires to improve their overall comprehension and skills in the compliance arena may pursue the NCCO designation. Currently, there are CEOs, compliance officers, internal auditors, attorneys, lending officers, risk managers, vendors and numerous other individuals who have successfully passed the exams to become NCCOs.
Where can I take the NCCO exams?
There are two options. Individuals can take the four exams at NAFCU's Regulatory Compliance School held each spring and fall or order the NCCO Self-Study Bundle and take the exams at their credit union using an exam proctor.
Do I need to purchase NAFCU's Credit Union Compliance GPS in order to take the exams?
You must purchase NAFCU's electronic Credit Union Compliance GPS in order to take the exams. The GPS serves as the primary guide for studying for the NCCO exams as it contains study tips in each chapter and exam questions come from content included in the GPS. The GPS is updated every year and those changes are also incorporated in the exams. It is offered through the NCCO Self-Study Bundle or given complimentary to NAFCU’s Regulatory Compliance School attendees
Timeframes for Taking or Retaking the NCCO Exams
How long do I have to take the exams if I choose the self-study option?
You have one year from the date you purchase the NCCO Self-Study Bundle to take and pass all four exams. However, the sooner you take the exams the better as the exams are regularly updated to reflect changes to regulations.
How do I purchase the NCCO exams?
You may purchase the NCCO exams online through the NCCO Self-Study Bundle. Be sure to pass the exam PDFs along to your proctor who will monitor your exam. Upon completion of the exams, please follow the instructions for returning the exams to NAFCU to be graded.
How long do I have to retake exams that I did not pass at Regulatory Compliance School?
You will have until September 30th of the year in which you attended the Spring Regulatory Compliance School to retake and pass any exams. For example, if you attend School in March 2020, you will have until September 30, 2020 to retake and pass the exams. This includes any exams that you did not take while at Regulatory Compliance School. You have until January 31, if you attend the Summer Regulatory Compliance School. For example, if you attend School in July 2020, you would have until January 31, 2021, to retake and pass the exams.
If I do not pass an exam, how do I obtain a new exam to retake?
You may purchase retake exams online. You will then be emailed instructions on how to download the retake exam(s) you need. Be sure to pass the retake exam PDF along to your proctor who will monitor your exam. Upon completion of this retake exam, please follow the instructions for returning the exam to NAFCU to be graded.
Maintaining Your NCCO: Common Questions from Current NCCOs
I became an NCCO this year. When can I start accruing Continuing Education Credits (CEUs)?
Your accumulation period begins on the first of January of the year after you passed the exams. For example, if you passed your exams in 2019 your accumulation period would be January 1, 2020, through December 31, 2021.
How many CEUs do I need to earn to recertify?
You must earn 24 CEUs during your accumulation period. Each time you recertify, your NCCO designation is valid for another two year period during which you would need to obtain 24 CEUs in order to maintain your NCCO status.
How can I track my CEU credits?
To check your CEU total on the NAFCU website, log in and click on View Account in the upper right corner. Your CEUs will be listed on your account page.
How can I renew my NCCO designation?
You have two ways to renew your NCCO designation. Current NCCOs can obtain CEUs by attending NAFCU's Regulatory Compliance Seminar or NAFCU's Regulatory Compliance School. These conferences grant 24 CEUs of in-person training. CEUs are also available for NAFCU compliance webinars (1.5 CEUs each) or for other compliance training. You may also receive CEUs by attending compliance related sessions at other conferences including NAFCU's Risk Management Seminar, BSA Seminar, Board of Directors and Supervisory Committee Conference, and Annual Conference and Solutions Expo.
I've attended a NAFCU webinar that qualifies for NCCO credit and want to receive CEUs toward renewing my NCCO designation. How do I get credit?
Webinars that are eligible for NCCO CEU credit will be clearly marked in the description of the event. NCCOs will automatically receive CEUs for participating in qualifying live or on-demand webinar (most webinars qualify for 1.5 CEUs). You must be logged in to the Online Training Center with your individual NAFCU website login to receive credit. If you do not see the appropriate credits awarded or did not complete webcast participation, please email us to adjust your credits accordingly.
Can I earn CEUs for attending a non-NAFCU conference, event or webcast?
Yes, but the program needs to be pre-approved by NAFCU prior to the CEUs being accepted. Learn more.
I'm a NCCO and I've changed credit unions. What's the best way to provide my updated information to NAFCU?
Please send an email to NAFCU's Member Service Center at firstname.lastname@example.org to let us know of any changes to your credit union. Your NCCO status will not be impacted by your change in employer. You do not need to start a new record. If you have specific NCCO-related questions, please send an email to email@example.com.
I have a question that is not addressed above. Who should I contact?
If you have an NCCO-related question, please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com and we'll do our best to assist you.
How do I select an exam proctor?
If you are doing self-study, you must have a proctor present while you take each exam. Your exam may be proctored by any member of the senior management staff of your credit union, organization or company, or by an HR, personnel or training staff member. Proctoring services offered by public libraries are also acceptable.
How does the test process work?
In your exam kit located in your NCCO Self-Study Bundle, you will find a proctor memo and affidavit. When you are ready to take the exam, you will give the exam kit to your proctor. Your proctor should print the exam at the time the test is taken. It is important that the exam file is not opened until you are in the presence of the proctor at the time of the exam.
Each test can be taken at any time and location agreed upon by you and the proctor. You should use a no. 2 pencil to take the exam. You will have 60 minutes to complete it. You may not use any study notes or materials for the exam.
When you have completed the exam, please give the exam booklet and the answer sheet to the proctor to be sealed in a return envelope that will be sent to NAFCU.
Do I need to take all four tests at once?
No, you can take the tests in any order, and you do not need to take all four tests at once. Many prospective NCCOs choose to take one test at a time.