Are you interested in becoming a Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA)? Are you looking for the right nursing program to jump start your career? Look no further! We offer a comprehensive resource for individuals seeking a career as a Certified Nursing Assistant.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, there will be a continued demand for health care professionals until the year 2020 because of the growing elderly population. This growth in the demand for health care services should lead to increased opportunities for nursing professionals in nursing homes, hospitals and clinics.
What is a Certified Nursing Assistant Program?
A CNA program is a short training course that helps students gain the knowledge and skills required for becoming a nursing assistant. The program is offered in community colleges, universities, and private health care institutions. It is important to note that some states do not mandate interested individuals to undergo training prior to taking the certification exam for CNAs. However, it is highly encouraged to take the program to gain a more structured and in-depth knowledge on the theories and practical skills behind the job of a CNA. The program covers basic subjects in nursing studies, such as fundamentals of nursing and the required skills.
Admission to a CNA program is subjective to the requirements set by a certain educational institution. This may vary from one school to another. However, we have listed below the usual requirements for enrolment in a CNA training course:
- Age Requirement - In the United States, people must be at least 18 years old to be declared eligible to enroll in a nursing training program as well as take the examination for certification and/or licensure.
- High School Diploma - You must be at least a high school graduate to qualify for admission. If a high school diploma is not available, as with home-schooled individuals, you may present your GED certificate as an alternative.
- Academic Requirements - Note that some schools offer nursing courses as part of their elective classes. Some schools set standards as to the acceptable grades of their applicants. Where applicable, a grade of not less than C on health-related subjects is the standard.
Tuition & Fees
According to the most recent statistics, the tuition fee of a CNA program ranges between $400 and $1,000. This, however, is determined on the type of school you are going to enroll in. Public colleges can offer a training program within the said range. However, private schools and universities may peak up to $2,500 for their tuition fees. Note that some institutions offer free training, given that the student works for them for a certain period. Financial aids are also available for eligible students.
A CNA program typically takes about 6 to 12 weeks of full-time study to complete. The program can further be subdivided to a 5-day-per-week class with 7 hours dedicated for each day, and at least 3 days of practical skill testing and 8 hours of actual internship to a participating medical facility. CNA programs can also be taken part-time or online and can be completed within the same timeframe, although adjustments to the coursework are needed.
Top 10 CNA Schools
In the United States alone, there is a plethora of schools offering a CNA program. Choosing the right school is crucial to the outcome of your training. We have listed below the top 10 most popular schools offering the said program based on a combination of program or major graduation data from the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), the primary federal entity for collecting and analyzing data related to education:
- Madison Area Technical College
3550 Anderson Street, Madison, WI 53704
- Wisconsin Indianhead Technical College
1019 South Knowles Avenue, New Richmond, WI 54017
- Northeast Wisconsin Technical College
2740 W Mason St, Green Bay, WI 54303
- Gateway Technical College
3520 30th Avenue, Kenosha, WI 53144
- Johnson County Community College
12345 College Boulevard, Overland Park, KS 66210
- Davis Applied Technology College
550 East 300 South, Kaysville, UT 84037
- Washtenaw Community College
4800 East Huron River Drive, Ann Arbor, MI 48106
- Fox Valley Technical College
1825 North Bluemound Drive, Appleton, WI 54913
- Front Range Community College
3645 West 112th Avenue, Westminster, CO 80031
- Harper College
1200 West Algonquin Road, Palatine, IL 60067
Online CNA Schools
Distance learning has now become a popular choice, especially among the working class. Online CNA schools use e-books, videos, live chats and emails to teach students online. You are also given 24/7 access to the course materials. On-campus meetings may be scheduled for the practical portion of the training. An online program is a practical choice for employed students, since it offers flexibility and convenience, without having to compromise your employment. Below is a list of the top 5 schools offering online CNA programs:
- A.T. Still University
- Florida Hospital College of Health Sciences
- Graceland University
- Quinnipiac University
- St. Joseph's College
CNAs are entry-level health care professionals who are tasked to assist patients in their daily activities under the supervision of an RN. Training through a 6- to 12-week CNA program is important in order to prepare yourself for the certification exam. The program covers the basic subjects of nursing. It can be taken full-time, part-time or online. Tuition fee ranges from $400 to $1,000.