CCIE Exam Policies

Candidates should be familiar with the policies for CCIE program participation, as stated below.

  • Conduct
    Candidates must agree they will not compromise the integrity or confidentiality of any Cisco certification exam or certification program. Prohibited actions are described in the Cisco Career Certifications and Confidentiality Agreement. Remedies for violating the policy can include a lifetime ban on all future exams and voiding of all previous certifications.
  • Confidentiality
    The questions and answers of the certification exams are the exclusive and confidential property of Cisco and are protected by Cisco’s intellectual property rights. Candidates taking Cisco exams must agree they have read and will abide by the terms and conditions of the Cisco Career Certifications and Confidentiality Agreement before beginning each exam.
  • Correspondence
    All official correspondence to certified CCIEs and candidates is sent to the email address in the CCIE database. This database is SEPARATE from the Cisco customer database. Changing

    an email address in the Cisco customer database does not automatically update the CCIE database. CCIEs and candidates must keep their CCIE email address updated in order to ensure they received all official correspondence.

  • Exam Violations
    Disclosure of test content is strictly prohibited. Please report any suspicious activity as described in Cisco’s Exam Violation Rules.
  • Lab Exam: Double Booking
    CCIE candidates are allowed to schedule only a single CCIE lab exam date at any location for each CCIE track. Double booking for lab exams in the same track, at either the same location or different locations, is not permitted by the database. Candidates will be allowed to simultaneously schedule lab exams for different tracks.
  • Lab Exam: Exam Rules
    Candidates for the CCIE written exam or lab exam are not allowed to bring anything into the exam room or take anything out. This includes, but is not limited to: notes, documentation, watches, laptops, keyboards, pagers, PDAs, and mobile phones. DO NOT confer or consult with anyone about the exam while taking the exam or after the exam is completed. During an exam, you may only discuss your exam with the lab engineer.
  • Lab Exam: Payment
    Price not confirmed and is subject to change until full payment is made.
    Types. Lab sites in China and Japan will only accept payment via wire transfer. All other locations accept online credit card payment (American Express, Visa, Mastercard, or Eurocard) See “Lab Exam: Scheduling and Payment” for details. You are responsible for any fees your financial institution may charge to complete the payment transaction.
    Due Date. Full payment must be received at least 90 days before the lab exam date. Only one e-mail notice is sent as a payment reminder. Payments generally take one to seven business days to process, so be sure to initiate payment in advance of the due date. It is important that if payment will be made by wire transfer, that the payment is scheduled well in advance to prevent the lab date being dropped. Exams for which payment is not received by the due date will be automatically dropped from the schedule. If you still wish to take the lab, you must rebook the exam online and complete your payment. There is no guarantee that your original date will still be available once it has been dropped for non-payment. If you bookan exam for a date less than 90 days away, you must complete payment on the day you book the exam or the registration cannot be submitted. Candidates are ultimately responsible for making the lab payment in a timely manner and Cisco will not be held liable for any candidates automatically dropped due to non-payment.
    Processing. Credit card payments entered into the system will be processed on the payment due date, exactly 90 days prior to your lab date, as will invoices for all payment types. Be sure the company name, invoicing address and email address are complete and accurate to ensure proper delivery of your invoice. No invoices will be generated before the lab exam due date.
  • Lab Exam: Rescheduling, Canceling and Postponing
    Prior to Due Date. Cancellations or changes to the exam date, location, or track must be made prior to the payment due date–90 days before the scheduled lab date. To make any changes, you must log into the Lab Scheduling tool and drop your current lab. Then you can reschedule according to preferred date, location and track. You may book an exam for a date less than 90 days away, if you complete payment on the day you book the exam.
    If you need to cancel an exam before the due date, and paid via a wire transfer that has already cleared, you are eligible for a full refund by requesting support via the Certifications Online Support tool.
    After Due Date. Changes and cancellations are not permitted after the payment due date–90 days prior to the scheduled lab date–and no refunds will be issued. If you are not able to attend your scheduled lab date, contact support to let them know the lab seat will not be used. You will still forfeit your payment, but you will be allowed to book another exam date immediately. If you do not contact support, you will be marked as a “no show” for the exam and be barred from booking another exam for 30 days.
    Candidates Requiring Visas. If you require a visa to attend your lab exam, it is strongly recommended you apply 10-12 weeks before your lab date. Candidates who fail to obtain required visas will still be bound by these cancellation policies and must cancel their lab exam before the payment due date to be eligible for a full refund. For more information in requesting a CCIE Invitation Letter, please visit our CCIE: Invitation Letter (Entrance Visa) Instant Answer.
  • Lab Exam: Reevaluation of Lab Results

    Exam results appeals are available for the routing and switching, security, and service provider technology tracks. Only exams with potential to change from fail to pass will have the option to request an appeal, based on years of historical data. Appeals are not available for the voice or storage tracks due to equipment limitations.

    An appeal consists of a second proctor loading your configurations into a rack to recreate the test and re-score the entire exam. This process takes up to three weeks after receipt of payment. Only one appeal per lab attempt is permitted.

    The result of the appeal is a confirmation of the existing fail or an update to a pass.

  • Payment Terms

    Make your request within 14 days following your exam date by using the “Request for Reread” link next to your lab record. Each appeal costs $250.00 USD plus any applicable local taxes. Payment is made online via credit card and your card will be charged upon receipt of the request. You may not cancel the appeal request once the process has been initiated. Refunds are given only when results change from fail to pass.

  • Lab Exam: Retakes
    All candidates must wait 30 days between CCIE lab attempts. Please note the 30 days starts from the day after a failed lab exam.
  • Lab Exam: Scoring
    You must obtain an overall score of at least 80% to pass the lab exam. You can view your lab exam results online (login required), usually within 48 hours. Results are Pass/Fail and failing score reports indicate major topic areas where additional study and preparation may be useful.
  • Lab Exam: Start Times
    Start times for exams are indicated in email can also found on the web page associated with each lab location (for a list, see Lab Exam Locations). Please verify your email address in your candidate profile so we can notify you of any changes. If you have any questions about the start time of your exam, please contact CCIE customer support through the Certifications Online Support tool . If you arrive more than two hours after the start of your exam, you will not be allowed to start. If you arrive less than two hours late, you will be allowed to start but you must finish with the rest of the group.
  • Logo Guidelines
    Certified CCIEs may only use the CCIE logo as provided and in accordance with the published Logo Guidelines.
  • Recertification
    To maintain active CCIE status, CCIEs are required to pass either a CCIE written exam of their choosing from among all of the currently available written exams, or a CCIE lab exam in a new track every 24 months. Candidates can only apply one passed written exam towards recertification for every 24 month recertification period. Certification candidates are responsible for keeping track of their certification expiration dates; your recertification deadline can be viewed online anytime (with login) at Certification Status. Subsequent recertification deadlines are always based on your original certification date, not on when you took your last recertification exam.
    If your CCIE recertification requirements are not completed on or before the certification’s expiration date, your CCIE certification will be suspended for one year. Candidates have one year to recertify their CCIE certification by passing the required written exam. If a candidate does not recertify prior to the one year suspension period, all CCIE certification requirements must be completed again to obtain the certification (pass both the written exam and the lab exam.) Please see Recertification for detailed information.
  • Travel Costs
    Under no circumstances will Cisco reimburse travel costs for CCIE lab exams.
  • Written Exam: Expiration
    Candidates must make an initial attempt of the CCIE lab exam within 18 months of passing the CCIE written exam. Candidates who do not pass must re-attempt the lab exam within 12 months of their last scored attempt in order for their written exam to remain valid. If a candidate does not pass the lab exam within three years of passing the written exam, he or she must retake the written exam before being allowed to attempt the lab exam again.
  • Written Exam: Retakes
    There is no limit to the number of attempts that can be made on the written exam. However, candidates must wait 5 calendar days between exam attempts. Once a candidate passes a particular written exam, he or she may not retake that same exam for at least 180 days. (Though rare, this may occur in certain recertification situations.)
  • Written Exam: Scoring
    Pass marks are set by using statistical analysis and are subject to change. The pass score is given on the Examination Score Sheet at the end of the test. Along with the candidate’s score, there is a notation of either PASS or FAIL. Scores on written exams are automatically downloaded from testing vendors, but may take up to 10 days to appear in the CCIE database.