In previous years, students were able to "challenge" a particular certification course without taking an instructor-led training or blended-learning course (as long as certain criteria were met). With the new PAM or Program Administration Manual release, the AHA no longer allows students to challenge a course. If you find a training location that offers this as an option it may not be an accepted certification. Below is the official statement on the subject effective September 21, 2017.
“The AHA no longer offers a “challenge” option, where students may complete course testing requirements without participating in an AHA instructor-led training or blended-learning course. To demonstrate proficiency in knowledge and skills, all students must complete a provider course every 2 years to maintain their course completion card."
— Program Administration Manual, September 21, 2017 pg. 41