CNA Courses – Is Not That Difficult As You Think

Proper understanding and training of a certain task will help you perform the duty efficiently,same is the case with the job of a certified nursing assistant. It is obligatory for every CNA aspirant to undergo a CNA course before applying for a job in the nursing field.

Structure of the CNA Course

The CNA certification program has been designed in such a way that the student will be trained to take care of the patient in a thorough manner.

The theoretical classes are conducted for 30-35 hours in some states to impart knowledge on various important aspects like:

  • Physiology
  • Infection control
  • Hygiene management
  • Respecting the rights of the patient
  • Emergency control procedures
  • Medication management
  • Reporting to nurses
  • Communication with patients etc.

The skills lab sessions are to improve the communication skills of the student as it is the CNA who spends the maximum number of hours with the patient, more than that of a nurse or a doctor.

So, you will have to communicate with the patient effectively in order to take care of him or her effectively and help in the process of curing.

Clinical training sessions are a very important part of the course and full attendance is mandatory for all the sessions.

You will be given on the job training by a nurse or a senior assistant in a healthcare facility. You will be required to be professional in your behavior with the instructors as well as the nurses you work with.

After you successfully complete the required number of hours of training, you would be required to clear two tests, namely, skills test and written test.

The skills test would evaluate your practical skills that you have learnt from your clinical sessions and the written test would evaluate your knowledge based on the aspects learnt from lectures.

The passing score is high for the test and you will have to put in lot of efforts to clear these exams in order to be certified.

Once you clear them, you will be listed in your state’s registry as a certified nursing assistant.

CNA certification courses are designed to provide holistic training to you to become a professional nursing assistant and pursue a lucrative career in the future.

What Student Will Learn In Their Course

The duration of the training in all the states should at least be 75 hours as declared by the Board of Nursing. However, at many instances, the duration of the program extends. During the training program, both theoretical and practical sessions will be conducted.

Following are the few things that will be taught during the CNA course:

Physiology and Anatomy of the Human Body

As the completion of this program will enable the students to become a part of the nursing field, it is important to know the human body basics and the functions of each and every part of the body.

Though the CNA’s would not be treating the patients, but they definitely need to know about the human body basics. It is advisable to make the foundation of any program strong, so that things become easier in the future.

Knowledge of human body structure will help them understand the need of medical procedures.

Responsibilities of a CNA in a Health Care Organization

CNA trainees are taught all the duties of a nursing aide that are necessary to be performed in health care institutes. Some of them are:

  • Conducting vital tests such as checking the temperature, pulse rate, and the blood pressure of the patient’s body
  • Changing the bed linens
  • Keeping the patient’s room clean
  • Maintaining hygiene of the residents
  • Preparing health charts of the patients
  • Answering patient’s calls
  • Help in transportation of the patients
  • Prepare the residents for surgery
  • Taking necessary steps in case of emergency

Though a brief idea about all these are taught in the theoretical sessions, most of it will be learnt in the practical sessions where you get hands on experience about the skills.

Importance of a CNA Course

  • The primary objective of these courses is to educate the candidates to take care of the patients and to prepare them for the certification exams
  • To obtain the CNA certification and license
  • It is a mandatory requirement to get a job as a certified nursing assistant
  • It helps develop skillful nursing aides, who would later develop their career in the nursing field

Types of CNA Training Courses

Such courses are available in all the regions of the USA. Community colleges, nursing schools, hospitals, Red Cross institutes, and other health care institutes are the places where such training is conducted.

There are basically two types (modes) of training that you can pursue. They are classroom and online CNA classes.

Classroom Training

As the name suggests the lectures are conducted in a classroom where the instructors would either be registered nurses or highly qualified nursing experts having several years of work experience in this field.

The training hours can be classified into three categories:

  1. Theoretical
  2. Skills lab sessions
  3. Clinical sessions

A stipulated number of hours of each category should be completed by every student in order to be eligible for the certification. The number of hours to be completed in training varies from one state to the other.

Usually, it is in the range of 70-75 hours which is divided among the classes, labs and clinical sessions.

Clinical sessions are very much compulsory when compared to the theoretical classes and there are a minimum number of hours to be completed in the CNA certification course order to be considered for the certification.

Theoretical Classes

The theoretical classes impart knowledge on various aspects related to the role and responsibilities of a certified nursing assistant like infection control, maintenance of hygiene, medication management, physiology, taking vital signs, dressing etc.

Apart from physical disabilities and how to assist patients with such disabilities, you will be trained to become a moral support to the patients as you would be spending more time with them than the nurses and doctors. You will have to be dedicated to the core objective of this job which is service and everything will become enjoyable for you.

Skills Lab

In the skills lab, you would be trained on communication skills which is very much essential as you will be expected to communicate properly with the patients and it is your support and care that will contribute to the improvement in the patient’s health.

As a nursing aide, you will have to effectively deal with patients; who may get hyper or behave rudely as their physical illness has certain negative effects on their mental well-being as well. So, your communication skills have to be honed in order to become a successful certified nursing assistant.

Clinical Sessions

The training program consists of clinical sessions which are conducted in the healthcare facilities to demonstrate the duties of a CNA to aspirants, so one would have hands-on experience of the job.

You will exactly know what you are up to as you want to pursue certified nursing aide as a career.


The ultimate test comes in the form of the examination for getting certified after completing the required number of training hours. You will have to clear a skills test and then clear a written examination with the required score in order to be certified.

The skills test will test your practical knowledge of the course and you will have to perform certain tasks and tests which are expected to be performed as a CNA.

After clearing the skills test, you will have to pass the written examination which will test your knowledge on various aspects of a certified nursing aide. After clearing the final examination, you will be listed in the state’s registry as a certified nursing aide.

CNA Online Course

Certified nursing assistants who assist the doctors and registered nurses in hospitals and nursing homes are the front line workers of a health care field.

This is because they have to perform so many challenging and responsible tasks throughout their duties as well as they have to remain on their foot ready for any emergency case.

They work under the guidance and supervision of registered nurses (RNs) which automatically makes them to learn and practice the nursing skills daily.

For becoming CNAs, the students have to complete certified nursing assistant training programs, either offline or online.

Both kinds of courses are available; the only thing is that the students have to look for the best one out of them. The principal reason for selecting an CNA online program is lack of sufficient time for attending the offline classes.

Choosing the Best CNA Online Course

One has to first search various

  • Health schools
  • Medical colleges
  • Community colleges
  • Vocational schools
  • Nursing homes
  • Hospitals

And other health care institutions in local area for if they offer any online certified nursing aide classes for the students.

This will make sure that the respective facility is in local area and can be easily contacted in case of any query. It is always better to find such a facility which is recognized or accredited by the state nursing board.

Usually, the fees structure for certified nurse assistant programs is affordable, but some online certified nursing aide programs also offer free enrollment as well as free scholarship programs.

This is very beneficial for those students who are opting for online classes only because they cannot afford to pay for offline classes.

Like offline certified nurse aide programs, the duration of these online programs also may vary from 3 weeks to 6 months.

There are various free online classes too, but one should always be alert and search for the reliable one after thorough inquiry of the same.

An Ideal Free Online certified nursing assistant Program Offers:

  • 100% free certified nurse assistant training course along with enrollment
  • All the information related with certified nurse aide certification and licensure
  • Step- by-step guide to obtain the certified nurse assistant license
  • Free course material including all the essential content of the syllable
  • General essential clinical tasks and steps for each of the skills
  • Illustrative course material composed of literature, descriptions, picture examples, demonstration videos
  • Practice tests meant for practicing before the state certified nursing aide exam
  • Instructions about fire safety, infection control and emergency situation
  • Group discussions involving the students through web based medium

Fee Structure and Duration of the Course

There are certain fees applicable for the course. Given below is the fee structure and the duration of the course for some of the states.

Training Institute
Duration of the Course
California Seasons Medical Training 160 hours USD 1,350
Georgia Center for Progressive Training 140 hours USD 500
New York ABC Training 120 hours USD 1,600
Alabama Rio Salado 190 hours USD 1000
Michigan American Red Cross 90 hours USD 900

Where Can You Find Cheap CNA Courses?

One of the primary reasons that an individual decides to become a certified nursing assistant is that it takes very less input in terms of money as well as the fact it requires no prior official degree in the field of medical science.

Along with these factors a professional certified nursing assistant can start earning quickly without putting in resources such as large amount of money and time as well.

Despite of all these factors there are still some colleges that offer professional certified nursing assistant courses at a high price but there are also medical institutes that offer cheap CNA courses or free CNA courses and all the certified nursing assistant has to do is sign a bond that entitles the individual to work for the institute once his or her course finishes and they officially becomes a certified nursing assistant for a specific duration of time.

The duration will be informed to the certified nursing assistant when he or she is signing the bond and doing so is beneficial for both the parties owing to the fact that it will promise the individual a job after the completion of the course and it grants the medical institute an employee without having to go through the entire hectic procedure of hiring one.

Yet another method that people usually follow is by finding out about courses in the colleges around their vicinity.

If it suits their needs then they can opt for joining their local community college but all they need to make sure is that they are cheap and offer a degree that is recognized by the medical community or else the individual will end up paying for a course that will get him or her nowhere after completing the course.

CNA training courses can be very expensive at times but there are cheaper alternatives that are just as good.

An average certified nursing assistant program will last for around five weeks and requires multiple characteristics such as

  • Confidence
  • Dedication
  • Self belief

And commitment along with the criteria of clearing the NNAAP or the National Nurse Aide Assessment Program, which is the examination at the end of the course.

All an individual needs to do is make sure that the course they are on is state approved and at the end of the day they will get certificate that is recognized in the nursing industry after clearing the examination mentioned above. All courses should be taught by state approved nurses.

As mentioned above, an individual can also opt for the provision of getting trained for free without paying a cent.

Yes, there are in fact cheap CNA courses for the aspirants; these will usually take places at nursing homes. There is always a catch though, in turn for the free training the individual must work for them for free after officially becoming a certified nursing assistant.

Both clinical and classroom training is performed on location and the individual could be fully qualified in a year.

This may seem scary but on the job training can be a great way to qualify and from the start, the certified nursing assistants are exposed to real life patients, which grants them the experience required to grow in the field and makes them thorough professionals as soon as they become certified nursing assistants.

The best way for an individual to get involved and become a professional certified nursing assistant, is by signing up with a medical institute and contact them to see if they have any openings.

A different yet beneficial source for an individual to get cheap CNA courses is the internet.

Schools for Free CNA Courses

Many individuals who are looking for a fast and efficient as well as cheap method to obtain knowledge related to certified nursing assistants and become a professional CNA often resort to courses online.

These courses give people the opportunity to learn anywhere on the planet without any hassles, and all they need to do is log in to the course online and start learning.

The only disadvantage perhaps is the unavailability of practical knowledge if one opts for courses online.

Practical training and knowledge is by far the most important factor in becoming a successful and professional certified nursing assistant.

However, there are courses that promise practical training if the individual is willing to commit to the course and travel to their centers to get trained, but yet again one needs to ensure the authenticity of the course and the facilities they provide before joining the program.

To conclude, free CNA training can be found online from various schools that offer nursing assistant training. The web based experience comes without the clinical experience that students obtain from training in a hospital or even community college and other such professional medical environments.

After making sure that the student has found the right institute or college to enroll in, he or she needs to work hard during the course, become a thorough professional certified nursing assistant by crossing the final hurdle, which is the NNAAP or the examination required to clear in order to become a licensed certified nursing assistant.

Aspiring CNAs will still need to pass their state’s respective exams for certified nursing assistant certification. In most cases, the cost of the certification exam will have to be paid by the graduating student.

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