Next CLS Testing Window

Spring Testing Window:
March 20 – May 1, 2021
Application Deadline:
Friday, March 12, 2021

Summer Testing Window:
June 19 – July 31, 2021
Application Deadline:
Friday, June 11, 2021

Fall Testing Window:
October 9 – November 27, 2021
Application Deadline:
Friday, October 1, 2021

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CLS Certification
Recognized by ACC

The CLS certification is now recognized by the American College of Cardiology as qualifying criteria to become an Associate of the American College of Cardiology (AACC), a distinguished designation honoring those with advanced training and education in the field of Cardiology.

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CLS Certification Featured on Today's Dietitian

Learn more about this certification and why RDNs should pursue it.

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Renewal of Certification


Becoming certified as a Clinical Lipid Specialist demonstrates professional accomplishment and growth, and validates competence, knowledge, dedication, and commitment to best practices and standards in the field of lipidology. Competence includes both cognition and behaviors, and can be defined as the ongoing ability to integrate and apply the knowledge, skills, judgment, and values to practice safely, effectively, and ethically in a designated role.

After initial certification, ROC encourages individuals to continue activities essential to the maintenance of knowledge and continuing competence required for their level of practice and certification. With new technology, strategies, and research comes change. Renewal of certification assures the public that those holding the CLS credential have maintained knowledge and competence, and are up-to-date with the latest advances in the field.

The ACCL requires that all CLS renew their certification every 10 years to maintain active status. A CLS can continue to use this credential by maintaining their license to practice (if applicable) and meeting the CLS ROC requirements in place at the time of their renewal. Those who do not renew their certification, must cease using the CLS credential after the associated expiration date.

Download ROC Guide

Visit ROC Application Portal

ROC Requirements


The ACCL requires that all CLS renew their certification every 10 years to maintain active status. A diplomate’s certification expires December 31st of the 10th year since their initial certification. The yearly renewal deadline to apply for CLS ROC is October 1st.

The requirements for renewal of certification are:

  • Hold a current, active license to practice (if applicable) in the United States or Canada.
  • Hold a current CLS certification through the ACCL.
  • Demonstrate completion of at least 1,000 practice hours in the five years prior to expiration of certification.


  • Either Pathway 1 or Pathway 2.

Pathway 1: Lipid-Focused Continuing Education

Demonstrate 75 hours of lipid-focused continuing education, completed in the five years prior to expiration of certification.

The ACCL endorses the NLA’s Core Curriculum in Clinical Lipidology. Continuing education programs that cover anything outlined in this curriculum meet ACCL's definition of “lipid-focused.” All NLA programs are accepted.

Pathway 2: Examination

Pass the current CLS exam by December 31 of renewal year.*

Once your ROC application is processed and approved, candidates will receive an email with instructions on how to schedule and set-up your exam. The exam will be delivered via online proctoring and candidates must have a webcam and internet connection to take the exam.

*If you do not pass the exam, your certification is no longer valid. If you wish to reactivate this credential, you must re-apply to sit for the exam through the initial application process.


Any CLS wishing to renew their certification must demonstrate completion of at least 1,000 practice hours in the five years prior to expiration of certification. The practice hours are not required to be documented in detail, however, candidates must submit a defendable letter of verification from their supervisor or a professional equivalent qualified to comment on practice hours.

For purposes of renewal, practice means time spent providing direct or indirect patient care and/or a professional contribution to the care and self-management education of patients with lipid disorders. Practice also includes clinical education of healthcare professionals who care for patients with lipid disorders.

This definition is intended to be as inclusive as possible of positions currently held by CLS:

  • Clinical practice related to certification
  • Clinical role in lipid industry
  • Clinical supervision/teaching related to certification
  • Lipid program administration
  • Lipid program development
  • Lipid program management
  • Lipid-related research
  • Lipid-related consultation (industry or other providers)
  • Professional lipid education (self-assessment, etc.)
  • Public health/community surveillance related to certification
  • Volunteer activities related to certification


The Renewal Application deadline is October 1, each year. Candidates up for renewal in a particular year must submit their application on or before this date. Candidates are responsible for tracking their renewal date and submitting required documents in a timely manner.

Payment Information
The renewal of certification fee is $249. The ROC fee enables the ACCL to maintain the high standard set for the CLS credential. This fee includes: application processing, license verification, continuing education verification or examination fees, and certificate printing and mailing.

A $249 renewal fee is required when submitting your application for renewal of certification. This fee can be paid via credit card or check. Please make checks payable to "The Accreditation Council for Clinical Lipidology."


The CLS credential is considered expired if the renewal application is not complete and/or received by the appropriate deadline for the CLS renewal year. If you wish to reactive your credential, but did not meet the ROC application deadline, you must re-apply to sit for the exam through the initial application process.