ACLS Certification


Examining the key similarities and differences between an ACLS Certification and a PALS Certification. We'll pinpoint the primary features that distinguish the two, help determine which one you need, and then get you signed up and certified in just a few hours!


The Efficient, Affordable Way to Certify

The eMedCert Online ACLS (Advanced Cardiac Life Support) and PALS (Pediatric Advanced Life Support) Certification courses are built specifically for the demanding lifestyle required of 21st-century medical students and healthcare professionals. Our 100% online courses give you control of your ACLS and PALS Certifications – take them when you want, where you want, and at your own pace. Complete your courses with efficiency from your desktop, tablet, or smartphone.

Credible and Affordable ACLS and PALS Certifications

Our ACLS and PALS training is accredited through our partnership with the Postgraduate Institute for Medicine (PIM) and also by the California Board of Registered Nursing (CA BRN). We provide AMA, ANCC, ACPE, and ADA continuing education credits, redeemable upon completion of the ACLS and PALS Certification courses.

eMedCert and our ACLS and PALS material undergo routine audits by regulatory organizations and 3rd-party clinical teams. Our internal medical team continuously works to ensure compliance, accuracy, and integrity.


Ready To Begin?

Complete your registration and begin reviewing your material in less than two minutes. Certification has never been this easy!

Online ACLS and PALS Certification Details

Our ACLS and PALS Certification courses are designed to deliver the best online certification experience that can accompany your busy schedule.

  • Start When Ready -- No Time Limit -- Available 24/7
  • Finish in a Single Sitting or Save Your Progress and Return Later
  • Achieve a Passing Score –– 80% or Higher (40 Correct / 50 Total Questions)
  • Instant Exam Results & Unlimited Exam Retakes
  • No On-Site Skills Check Required
  • Digital ACLS / PALS Provider Card Available Immediately for Download
  • 8.0 AMA, ANCC, ACPE or ADA CME Credits Available

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More healthcare professionals are utilizing online platforms that can allow them to complete Advanced Cardiac Life Support (ACLS), Pediatric Advanced Life Support (PALS), and Basic Life Support (BLS) certification and recertification courses to adhere to their employer’s certification requirements. Since healthcare professionals often work long, demanding hours, online certification courses are usually more convenient than trying to sign up for and attend an in-person certification or recertification course.

But what is the difference between PALS and ACLS? There are a handful of important distinctions between ACLS vs PALS and when to use PALS vs ACLS – the main difference is that ACLS is used to treat adults while PALS is used to treat children. Both ACLS and PALS techniques can be life-saving and it’s important to always keep your certifications up-to-date, or if they lapse, to recertify as soon as possible.

ACLS will build upon baseline BLS skills, stress the importance of high-quality CPR, practice airway management (and intubation), and many other crucial components of recognizing and treating respiratory and cardiac arrest. PALS will cover a review of child and infant CPR, child AED use, differences between respiratory distress and failure, differences between compensated and hypotensive shock, effective communication skills as a part of a resuscitation effort, and more. Once you pass your courses, both ACLS and PALS certifications are valid for two years.

ACLS certification cost and PALS certification cost are generally the same, although many certification providers may offer a combination or bundle package. Organizations like eMedCert offer simple, reputable online certification courses for ACLS, PALS, and BLS – and each course was created by licensed medical professionals. The courses are all based on the most recent American Heart Association (AHA) material and guidelines, and maintaining your certifications is a necessary part of retaining vital, life-saving skills and procedural knowledge.

ACLS and PALS Certification

Remote learning and online certification providers are rapidly becoming more available, practical, and affordable. You can receive your ACLS certification online, and your PALS certification online, among many other industry standard certifications – all for a relatively low cost. In some cases, you may be able to bundle your certifications to save even more money, although we will discuss this in greater detail later.

More and more healthcare professionals who need to obtain their ACLS and PALS certification will do so online – ACLS and PALS online are more convenient than in-person certification courses and, in many cases, more cost-effective as well. Online certification courses like the ones offered by eMedCert also allow you complete control over how you review the necessary information.

Both the ACLS and PALS will cover a variety of different skills and procedures related to administering life-saving care. For example, the PALS online course goes over the administration of CPR, how to properly use an AED, and how to be a good team member and effective communicator during high-stress, critical situations. The ACLS online course will cover a substantial amount of information from the online BLS course in addition to recognizing and managing cardiac arrest by using a set of ACLS algorithms to treat certain situations, how to properly manage airways, knowledge of the ACLS drugs and dosages, and other pertinent topics as well.

You may find yourself wondering, “is PALS harder than ACLS?” Well, the answer may broadly vary from person to person depending on background knowledge and expertise. Many healthcare professionals who have taken both will more than likely tell you that one isn’t necessarily more difficult than the other – they are simply two separate yet necessary certifications.

Preparation for your ACLS or PALS certification or recertification may be quite similar to how you studied in nursing school or medical school. Flashcards and other memorization techniques can be helpful, in addition to studying on a full stomach in an atmosphere similar to where you will be when you take the exam.

ACLS PALS Recertification

In most cases, employers will require certain certifications to be up-to-date which may mean you need online ACLS / PALS recertification soon. Since ACLS and PALS certifications are good for two years, you can expect to have to take the recertification courses every two years, too. ACLS / BLS recertification online is less expensive than an initial certification. Recertification courses can also count toward satisfying any employer-required continued medical education (CME).

For more information on the continuing education offered for all eMedCert courses, please see our Continuing Education page.

Online ACLS recertification and PALS recertification is a straightforward process that is becoming a more common practice throughout the healthcare industry. eMedCert’s online recertification programs are designed with contemporary healthcare providers in mind – doctors, nurses, and other healthcare professionals who often work long and irregular hours in highly demanding environments. Trying to juggle your work schedule with in-person recertification classes amid all of life’s other necessities can be a massive burden.

All of eMedCert’s ACLS, PALS, and BLS materials are written and overseen by board-certified physicians with experience in emergency medicine and anesthesiology. We also partner with the Postgraduate Institute for Medicine (PIM) and the California Board of Registered Nursing (CA BRN). We can provide AMA, ANCC, ACPE, and ADA continuing education credits.

Additionally, eMedCert doesn’t require any on-site skills check, and you can start whenever you are ready – course material is available around the clock and there are no time restrictions whatsoever. You can do it all in one sitting or save your progress and pace yourself. One of the greatest benefits of online recertification is the freedom to go at your own speed and in a manner most applicable to your learning style. Once you finish, you have access to instantaneous exam results. Once you score 80 percent or higher, your certification is valid for two years. And by doing everything online, you save money, fit everything into your busy schedule, and finish on your own time without having to worry about any in-person requirements.


One way to ensure you obtain your online ACLS certification, BLS certification, and PALS certification is to utilize eMedCert’s ACLS / PALS / BLS bundle. This bundle includes a free BLS course with the purchase of an ACLS and PALS course. The ACLS, PALS, and BLS Recertification Bundle costs only $238 and provides 10 CME / CE credits, while the ACLS, PALS, and BLS Certification Bundle costs $338 and provides 10 CME / CE credits.

The courses are accessible 24/7 and you can save your progress so you can work at your own pace and complete courses without the added anxiety from time constraints. You can also retake your exam as many times as you need until you’re able to pass. There are no in-person skills check requirements, and upon completion, you can download a copy of your provider card immediately. Additionally, we will ship a hard copy of your provider card free of charge, which will arrive within 2 to 5 business days.

Since many professions require multiple certifications, bundling provides a relatively simple and affordable one-stop online solution. BLS certification is a requirement for most registered nurses. ACLS certification is generally required for nurses working in intensive care units or nurses who will be primarily working with adults. PALS certification is a requirement for nurses who work with children and infants. They each assess your abilities to be communicative and prepared with an appropriate response to any number of life-threatening situations.

A bundle package can help healthcare professionals cover all their bases – healthcare needs can change rapidly and having an up-to-date PALS, ACLS and BLS certification means you can adapt and help out your medical teams where necessary. Hospitals can be busy and frantic places, especially emergency rooms and intensive care units – ensuring that you have all of your certifications is part of the necessary preparation for any eventuality. The worst doesn’t always happen, but it helps to prepare for it.


The main distinction between ACLS vs. BLS certification is that BLS certification is the level of advancement. While BLS builds the very basic fundamentals of CPR and how to treat cardiac arrest, ACLS expands on that and is geared toward individuals in a hospital setting. Essentially, the way to think about ACLS vs. BLS is that BLS provides the foundational knowledge upon which ACLS then expounds and elaborates. PALS also expounds upon the foundational elements of BLS as they pertain to children and infants.

You may still have a lot of questions like, “Do I need BLS if I have ACLS?” or “Does PALS include BLS?” While all of these certifications are similar, they are still different certifications and each course must be completed separately. Which certifications you need depends on the standards set forth by your employer. Regardless, the important thing to remember when it comes to ACLS vs BLS vs PALS is that they each provide invaluable life-saving knowledge. The pursuit of life-saving knowledge is a lifelong endeavor for healthcare providers. And similarly, ACLS, PALS, and BLS best practices are updated occasionally as better medical information becomes available. This is yet another reason why it’s important to keep all of your required certifications up-to-date.

By utilizing an online certification or recertification program, you can maintain your certifications and satisfy employer requirements so you can focus on what matters most – providing your patients with the best possible care. If your certifications expire soon and you aren’t sure when you’re going to be able to find time to work an in-person recertification course into your schedule, consider eMedCert’s online courses. BLS, ACLS, and PALS certifications, as well as bundle packages, are available completely online and have been accepted in all 50 states, Canada, and over 55 countries around the globe. You can complete your certification(s) and access your downloadable credentials in just a few hours from the comfort of your own home.