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How to become a Nursing Assistant

Unlike other professionals in the field of nursing, you are not required to have a degree to become a nursing assistant. However, you do still need formal training, which you could receive at a community college, vocational college or technical school. You could also train at certain nursing homes and hospitals. The following are steps you can take to become a nursing assistant:

  1. Earn a high school diploma or GED.
  2. Enroll in a state-approved training program.
  3. Pass the certification exam.
  4. Enroll in and pass the Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) examination.
How to become: Patient Care Technician · Home Health Aide · Nurse's Aide · Patient Assistant · Nursing Assistant
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What skills help Nursing Assistants find jobs?

  • Acute care
  • Assisted living
  • Bilingual
  • Care plans
  • Caregiving
  • Catheter care
  • Communication skills
  • Computer literacy
  • Computer skills
  • Customer service
  • Data collection
  • Documentation review
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Career progression for Nursing Assistant

Education levels for Nursing Assistants

Based on the requirements of Nursing Assistant job openings on Indeed in the United States within the last three years.
required level of educationpercent of job openings
High school diploma or GED79.2%
Associate's degree12.6%
Bachelor's degree7.1%
Master's degree0.8%
Middle school education0.3%
Doctoral degree0.1%
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Expected salary by experience

Based on resume data from Indeed users who reported working as a Nursing Assistant in the United States within the last three years.
Years of experienceAnnual salary in USD
0 - 4$23,200
4 - 8$24,500
8 - 12$25,400
12 - 16$25,500
16 - 20$25,800
20 - 24$25,800
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Common qualifications for Nursing Assistants

  • ACLS Certification
  • AED Certification
  • AHA Certification
  • BLS Certification
  • CNA
  • CPI Certification
  • CPR Certification
  • Caregiver Certification
  • Certified Home Health Aide
  • Certified Medical Assistant
  • Certified Medication Aide
  • Certified Medication Technician
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Common questions about career advices for a Nursing Assistant

How long does it take to get a certified nursing assistant (CNA) certification online?

Obtaining a certified nursing assistant (CNA) certification through online classes will generally take up to 12 weeks. While theory classes are taught online, you will still be required to gain training in a hands-on clinical setting to help develop practical skills.

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What is the job outlook for certified nursing assistant (CNA)?

The demand for certified nursing assistants (CNAs) is expected to grow in part because of the continued rise of jobs in the medical field. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, job growth for nursing assistants is expected to increase by 9% between 2018 and 2028.

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What kinds of skills should certified nursing assistant (CNA) have?

Certified nursing assistants (CNAs) should be skilled in technical aspects of the job like patient care and medical techniques such as taking vital signs and reporting healthcare progress. CNAs should also possess excellent interpersonal skills such as communication, empathy and compassion when caring for patients.

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What kind of education is required to be a certified nursing assistant (CNA)?

How long does it take to get a certified nursing assistant (CNA) license?

How hard is it to become a certified nursing assistant (CNA)?

Where can I get free certified nursing assistant (CNA) training?

Where can I take certified nursing assistant (CNA) classes?

What is the passing score for certified nursing assistant (CNA) exam?

What if I fail my certified nursing assistant (CNA) exam?

How can a certified nursing assistant (CNA) advance their career?

Can a certified nursing assistant (CNA) become a registered nurse?

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