Nursing Assistant Programs

Consider a sponsored online nursing program currently accepting applicants:

What Is It Like to Work as a Nursing Assistant?

Most nursing assistants (NAs) are employed by nursing facilities (also called nursing homes) that offer rehabilitation services, assisted living, and long-term care. The work involves basic patient care such as feeding, bathing, dressing, grooming, transporting, and other duties such as vital signs and some paperwork – all under the supervision of nurses or doctors. NAs can also work in hospitals, doctor’s offices, correctional facilities, or in home care.

You must be in good health and undergo a criminal background check prior to employment. Having a desire to help people, being dependable, and being able to work as part of a team are essential qualities for NAs.

For a detailed overview of a career as a nursing assistant, check out the Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Outlook Handbook.

Nursing Assistant Education

NA training programs are typically four to 18 weeks in duration, after which you are given a certificate of completion or a diploma. Shorter programs are ideal for people with healthcare experience or for those who want to qualify for the state certification exam in a short amount of time. Longer programs are good for those who need more hands-on care experience. Classes teach patient care skills and how to measure vital signs such as temperature and blood pressure. Expanded programs may include courses in body mechanics, nutrition, anatomy and physiology, infection control, and communication skills.

You can take NA courses if you are already working or in school. Training programs can be found in high schools, vocational-technical schools, and community or junior colleges. Some American Red Cross chapters and nursing care facilities also offer courses. Many programs offer evening and weekend classes. Some have an online component.

In many cases, you do not need a high school diploma to enter an NA training program. To become certified or find a job, however, you may need a high school diploma or equivalent.

Certified Nursing Assistant Programs

Certified nursing assistants (CNAs) undergo about 75 hours of additional training and pass a state competency exam. Most nursing facilities require you to be certified. Contact your state’s board of nursing to find out about certification requirements and examinations.

If you want to take care of people but do not want to undergo classroom training or testing, consider becoming a home care or personal aide.  These positions do not usually require a high school diploma, and you are trained on the job in tasks such as cooking, light housekeeping, personal care, and emergency and safety precautions.

To move on to other healthcare fields, you will need additional training. The most common careers for former nursing assistants are medical assistants, licensed practical nurses, and registered nurses. For any of these positions you need a high school diploma and additional education. To be a nurse you also need to pass a state licensing exam. For more information about requirements for these careers, check out the American Association of Medical Assistants, the National Federation of Licensed Practical Nurses or the American Nurses Association.

Becoming a CNA

By Nicole Galan

Certified nursing assistants (CNAs) are important members of the healthcare team, helping the patient with their most basic physical and emotional needs. They assist the patient in performing basic self-care activities: walking to the bathroom, eating, drinking, dressing and bathing.

For bed-bound patients, CNAs perform total care: giving bed baths, feeding them, and changing their position every two hours to prevent bedsores. This can be a very physical job because CNAs are on their feet for many hours of the day, and must be strong enough to turn or help move patients.

While not formally allowed to assess their patients, CNAs are often the first to notice that something may be wrong. This is simply because the CNA gets to know her patients very well. Caring for people the way that they do allows nursing assistants to develop strong and caring relationships with their patients. Due to the intimate nature of their work, nursing assistants must be sensitive, trustworthy and compassionate.

Nursing assistants frequently work in hospitals, long-term care facilities and in homecare. They work with all ages and all patient populations, although in very critical situations, the CNA may need to perform patient care with the nurse present.

“Certified nursing assistants frequently work in hospitals, long-term care facilities and in homecare.”

Their facility’s policies will dictate a lot of what CNAs are allowed to do. Some hospitals will allow them to take vital signs or blood glucose readings; others will not.

To become a CNA, you must attend a training program that may last four to sixteen weeks. The training consists of time spent in the classroom, clinical setting and laboratory. A practical and written exam is given at the end of the training program. After passing the exam, candidates must submit all of their paperwork directly to the State Board of Nursing, who will issue the certification. Once certified, the CNA must complete a certain number of continuing education credits each year to stay in good standing. Check with your state nursing board for more information about their requirements.

List of Programs

Programs That May Be Currently Accepting Applicants
Aiken Technical College
Aiken, South Carolina
  • Pre-Nursing Certificate
Allegany College of Maryland
Cumberland, Maryland
  • Nursing
  • Nursing Assistant/Geriatric Aide
Anne Arundel Community College
Arnold, Maryland
  • Patient Care Technician/Geriatric Nursing Assistant
Arapahoe Community College
Littleton, Colorado
  • Nurse Aide
Arizona Western College
Yuma, Arizona
  • Nursing Assistant
Arkansas Northeastern College
Blytheville, Arkansas
  • Nursing Assistant
Baptist School of Health Professions
San Antonio, Texas
  • Certified Nurse Assistant
Beebe Medical Center
Lewes, Delaware
  • Nursing Assistant Program
Bellevue College
Bellevue, Washington
  • Nursing Assistant Certified
Bemidji State University
Bemidji, Minnesota
  • Nursing Assistant
Bevill State Community College
Jasper, Alabama
  • Nursing Assistant
Blackhawk Technical College
Janesville, Wisconsin
  • Nursing Assistant
  • Nursing Assistant-Advanced
Bluegrass Community & Technical College
Lexington, Kentucky
  • Nurse Aide
BryanLGH College of Health Sciences
Lincoln, Nebraska
  • Basic Nursing Assistant
Canadian Valley Technology Center
Chickasha, Oklahoma
  • Advanced Acute Care Nursing Assistant (Pre-Nursing)
Capital Area Career Center
Springfield, Illinois
  • Certified Nursing Assistant
Carl Sandburg College
Galesburg, Illinois
  • Nurse Assistant
Central Arizona College
Coolidge, Arizona
  • Nursing Assistant
Central New Mexico Community College
Albuquerque, New Mexico
  • Certified Nursing Assistant
Central Ohio Technical College
Newark, Ohio
  • State Tested Nurse Aides
Central Wyoming College
Riverton, Wyoming
  • Certified Nursing Assistant
Chaffey College
Rancho Cucamonga, California
  • Certified Nursing Assistant
Chemeketa Community College
Salem, Oregon
  • Basic Nurse Assistant
Chippewa Valley Technical College
Eau Claire, Wisconsin
  • Nursing Assistant
Chisholm Trail Technology Center
Omega, Oklahoma
  • Advanced Acute Care Nursing Assistant (Pre-Nursing)
College of DuPage
Glen Ellyn, Illinois
  • Basic Nursing Assistant
College of Lake County
Grayslake, Illinois
  • Certified Nursing Assistant
College of Southern Nevada
Las Vegas, Nevada
  • Nursing Assistant Certificate
College of the Desert
Palm Desert, California
  • Nursing Assistant
Collin County Community College District
McKinney, Texas
  • Online Certified Nurse Assistant
Columbia Basin College
Pasco, Washington
  • Online Nursing Assistant Certification
Community College of Baltimore County
Baltimore, Maryland
  • Online Nursing Assistant
Community College of Beaver County
Monaca, Pennsylvania
  • Nurse Aid
Coppin State University
Baltimore, Maryland
  • Certified Nursing Assistant
  • Certified Nursing Assistant Training Program
Dalton State College
Dalton, Georgia
  • Certified Nursing Assistant
Davidson County Community College
Lexington, North Carolina
  • Nursing Assistant
Davis Applied Technology College
Kaysville, Utah
  • Nurse Assistant
Daytona State College
Daytona Beach, Florida
  • Nurse Aide and Orderly
  • Patient Care Assistant
Delta College
University Center, Michigan
  • Certified Nursing Assistant
Deltla Montrose Community College
Delta, Colorado
  • Nursing Aide
Des Moines Area Community College
Ankeny, Iowa
  • Nurse Aide Training Program
Durham Technical Community College
Durham, North Carolina
  • Nursing Assistant
East Central Community College
Decatur, Mississippi
  • Nursing Assistant
Eastern New Mexico University-Roswell
Roswell, New Mexico
  • Nursing Assistant Program
El Camino Community College
Torrance, California
  • Certified Nurse Assistant
Elgin Community College
Elgin, Illinois
  • Basic Nurse Assistant Training
Emily Griffith Technical College
Denver, Colorado
  • Nursing Assistant
Estrella Mountain Community College
Avondale, Arizona
  • Nurse Assistant Program
Everett Community College
Everett, Washington
  • Nursing Assistant Certified
Fayetteville Technical Community College
Fayetteville, North Carolina
  • Certified Nursing Assistant
Fletcher Technical Community College
Houma, Louisiana
  • Nurse Assistant Program
Fox Valley Technical College
Appleton, Wisconsin
  • Nursing Assistant
  • Online Nursing Assistant
Front Range Community College - Boulder County Campus
Longmont, Colorado
  • Nurse Aide Training
Front Range Community College - Larimer Campus
Fort Collins, Colorado
  • Nurse Aide Training
Gadsden State Community College
Gadsden, Alabama
  • Nursing Assistant Program
Garden City Community College
Garden City, Kansas
  • Geriatric Aide Assistant/Certified Nurse Aide
Gateway Community College
Phoenix, Arizona
  • Nurse Assisting
Gateway Technical College
Kenosha, Wisconsin
  • Nursing Assistant
Geneva General Hospital
Geneva, New York
  • CNA Program
Germanna Community College - Locust Grove Campus
Locust Grove, Virginia
  • Certified Nurses Aide
Glendale Community College
Glendale, Arizona
  • Online Nursing Assistant
Global Health Nurse Training Services
Alexandria, Virginia
  • Nurse Aide Program
Great Basin College
Elko, Nevada
  • Online Certified Nursing Assistant
Gulf Coast Community College
Panama City, Florida
  • Online Certified Nursing Assistant
H. Councill Trenholm State Technical College
Montgomery, Alabama
  • Online Nursing Assisting
Harrisburg Area Community College
Harrisburg, Pennsylvania
  • Online Nurse Aide
Harry S. Truman College
Chicgao, Illinois
  • Online Nurse Assistant
Highline Community College
Des Moines, Washington
  • Online Nursing Assistant
Hopkinsville Community College
Hopkinsville, Kentucky
  • Online Nurse Aide
Illinois Valley Community College
Oglesby, Illinois
  • Online Certified Nursing Assistant
Indian Capital Technology Center
Sallisaw, Oklahoma
  • Online Advanced Acute Nursing Assistant
Indian River State College
Fort Pierce, Florida
  • Online Nurse Assistant
Inver Hills Community College & Century College
Inver Grove Heights, Minnesota
  • Nursing Assistant Certificate
J Sargeant Reynolds Community College
Richmond, Virginia
  • Certified Nurses Aide
Jefferson State Community College
Birmingham, Alabama
  • Online Certified Nursing Assistant
Kaskaskia College
Centralia, Illinois
  • Nurse Assistant
Lake Land College
Mattoon, Illinois
  • Nurse Assisting
Lakeshore Technical College
Cleveland, Wisconsin
  • Nursing Assistant
Lakeview College of Nursing
Danville, Illinois
  • Basic Nurse Assistant
Lansing Community College
Lansing, Michigan
  • Nurse Aide: Acute & Long-Term
Laramie County Community College
Cheyenne, Wyoming
  • Certified Nursing Assistant
Laredo Community College
Laredo, Texas
  • Nurse Assistant
Lawson State Community College
Birmingham, Alabama
  • Home Health Aide
  • Nursing Assistant
Lincoln Land Community College
Springfield, Illinois
  • Nurse Assistant
Linfield College
Portland, Oregon
  • Certified Nursing Assistant
Lone Star College - Cy-Fair
Cypress, Texas
  • Nurse Aide
Lone Star College - Kingwood
Kingwood, Texas
  • Nurse Aide
  • Nursing Assistant Certificate
Lone Star College - Montgomery
Conroe, Texas
  • Nurse Aide
  • Nursing Assistant Certificate
Lone Star College - North Harris
Houston, Texas
  • Nurse Aide
  • Nursing Assistant Certificate
Lone Star College - Tomball
Tomball, Texas
  • Nurse Aide
  • Nursing Assistant Certificate
Lorain County Community College
Elyria, Ohio
  • Nurse Aide
Lower Columbia College
Longview, Washington
  • Nursing Assistant Certificate
Madison Area Technical College
Madison, Wisconsin
  • Nursing Assistant
Madisonville Community College
Madisonville, Kentucky
  • Nurse Aide State Registry
Marion Technical College
Marion, Ohio
  • Nurse Aide
Mercer County Community College
Trenton, New Jersey
  • Direct Health Care Provider
Mercy College of Health Sciences
Des Moines, Iowa
  • Certified Nursing Assistant
  • Nursing Assistant
Meridian Community College
Meridian, Mississippi
  • Health Care Assistant
Metro Technology Centers
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
  • Nurse Aide
  • Nursing Assistant
Metropolitan Community College
Omaha, Nebraska
  • Certified Nursing Assistant
Mid-America Technology Center
Wayne, Oklahoma
  • Nursing Assistant
Mid-State Technical College
Wisconsin Rapids, Wisconsin
  • Nursing assistants
Midland Lutheran College
Fremont, Nebraska
  • Certified Nursing Assistant
Milwaukee Area Technical College
Milwaukee, Wisconsin
  • Bilingual Nursing Assistant
  • Nursing Assistant
Minneapolis Community & Technical College
Minneapolis, Minnesota
  • Nursing Assistant/Home Health Aide
Minnesota West Community & Technical College
Worthington, Minnesota
  • Nursing Assistant
Mohave Community College
Lake Havasu City, Arizona
  • Certified Nursing Assistant
Monroe County Community College
Monroe, Michigan
  • Certified Nurse Aide
Moore Norman Technology Center
Norman, Oklahoma
  • Certified Nursing Assistant
  • Nurse Aide
  • Nursing Assistant
Moraine Park Technical College
West Bend, Wisconsin
  • Nursing Assistant
Moraine Valley Community College
Palos Hills, Illinois
  • Basic Nurse Assistant
Mott Community College
Flint, Michigan
  • Nurse Aide Preparation
Mountainland Applied Technology College
Orem, Utah
  • Certified Nursing Assistant
National Park Community College at Hot Springs
Hot Springs, Arkansas
  • Nursing Assistant Program
Nebraska Methodist College
Omaha, Nebraska
  • Certified Medication Aide
  • Certified Nursing Assistant
New Mexico Junior College
Hobbs, New Mexico
  • Nurse Aide
Nicolet Area Technical College
Rhinelander, Wisconsin
  • Nursing Assistant
Normandale Community College
Bloomington, Minnesota
  • Nursing Assistant Certificate
North Shore Community College
Danvers, Massachusetts
  • Nurse Assistant/Home Health Aide Certificate
Northcentral Technical College
Wausau, Wisconsin
  • Nursing Assistant
Northeast Community College
Norfolk, Nebraska
  • Basic Nurse Aide
Northeast Technology Center
Pryor, Oklahoma
  • Advanced Acute Care Nursing Assistant
  • Nursing Assistant
Northeast Wisconsin Technical College
Green Bay, Wisconsin
  • Nursing Assistants
Northland Community and Technical College
Thief River Falls, Minnesota
  • Nursing Assistant
Northland Pioneer College
Holbrook, Arizona
  • Nursing Assistant
  • Nursing Assistant
Northwest College
Powell, Wyoming
  • Online Certified Nursing Assistant
Northwest-Shoals Community College
Phil Campbell, Alabama
  • Certified Nursing Assistant
Oakton Community College
Des Plaines, Illinois
  • Basic Nurse Assistant Training
Ogden Weber Applied Technology College
Ogden, Utah
  • Nursing Assisting
Olympic College
Bremerton, Washington
  • Nursing Assistant
Otero Junior College
La Junta, Colorado
  • Certified Nurse aide
Paradise Valley Community College
Phoenix, Arizona
  • Nurse Assistant
Parkland College
Champaign, Illinois
  • Nurse Assistant Certificate
Pasco-Hernando Community College
New Port Richey, Florida
  • Nursing Assistant
Patrick Henry Community College
Martinsville, Virginia
  • Nurse Aide Training
Pearl River Community College
Poplarville, Mississippi
  • Nurse Aide
Phillips Community College of the University of Arkansas
Helena-West Helena, Arkansas
  • Nursing Assistant Program
Phoenix College
Phoenix, Arizona
  • Online Nurse Assisting Certificate
Piedmont Virginia Community College
Charlottesville, Virginia
  • Nursing Assistant
Pierce College Puyallup
Puyallup, Washington
  • Certified Nursing Assistant
  • Certified Nursing Assistant -Ibest Foundations
Prairie State College
Chicago Heights, Illinois
  • Certified Nursing Assistant
Premiere Education Group LLC - Salter School of Nursing
Manchester, New Hampshire
  • Licensed Nursing Assistant
Prince George's Community College
Largo, Maryland
  • Certified Nursing Assistant
Pueblo Community College
Pueblo, Colorado
  • Nurse Aide
Quinsigamond Community College
Worcester, Massachusetts
  • Nursing Assistant
Red River Technology Center
Duncan, Oklahoma
  • Nursing Assistant
Richard J. Daley College
Chicago, Illinois
  • Nursing Assistant
Richland Community College
Decatur, Illinois
  • Nurse Assistant
Ridgewater College
Willmar, Minnesota
  • Nursing Assistant
River Valley Community College
Claremont, New Hampshire
  • Nursing Assistant
Riverland Community College
Austin, Minnesota
  • Nursing Assistant/Home Health Aide
Saint Paul College - A Community & Technical College
St. Paul, Minnesota
  • Nursing Assistant or Home Health Aide
San Joaquin Delta College
Stockton, California
  • Certified Nursing Assistant
San Jose/Evergreen Community College District
San Jose, California
  • Nursing Assistant
Santa Barbara City College
Santa Barbara, California
  • Certified Nursing Assistant
Santa Fe Community College
Santa Fe, New Mexico
  • Certificate in Nursing Assistant
Scottsdale Community College
Scottsdale, Arizona
  • Certificate of Completion in Nurse Assisting
Shelton State Community College
Tuscaloosa, Alabama
  • Nursing Assistant and Home Health Aide
Shoreline Community College
Seattle, Washington
  • Nursing Assistant Certified
Sinclair Community College
Dayton, Ohio
  • Nurse Aide Training
Skagit Valley College
Mount Vernon, Washington
  • Nursing Assistant
Snead State Community College
Boaz, Alabama
  • Certificate Nursing Assistant
South Puget Sound Community College
Olympia, Washington
  • Nursing Assistant
South Suburban College
South Holland, Illinois
  • Basic Nurse Assistant Training
Southeast Arkansas College
Pine Bluff, Arkansas
  • Nursing Assistant
Southeast Kentucky Community and Technical College
Cumberland, Kentucky
  • Nursing Assistant & Medicaid Nurse Aide
Southern Oklahoma Technology Center
Ardmore, Oklahoma
  • Nursing Assistant
Southern Union State Community College
Opelika, Alabama
  • Nursing Assistant
Southern University at Shreveport
Shreveport, Louisiana
  • Certified Nursing Assistant
Southwest Georgia Technical College
Thomasville, Georgia
  • Nurse Aide Technical Certificate
Southwest Mississippi Community College
Summit, Mississippi
  • Nurse Assistant
Southwest Wisconsin Technical College
Fennimore, Wisconsin
  • Nursing Assistant
Southwestern College
Chula Vista, California
  • Certified Nursing Assistants
Southwestern Illinois College
Belleville, Illinois
  • Nurse Assistant
Spartanburg Community College
Spartanburg, South Carolina
  • Certified Nursing Assistant
Tacoma Community College
Tacoma, Washington
  • Nursing Assistant Certified
Temple College
Temple, Texas
  • Nurse Aide Certification
Trident Technical College
Charleston, South Carolina
  • Nursing Assistant
Triton College
River Grove, Illinois
  • Nurse Assistant Certificate
Tulsa Community College
Tulsa, Northern Mariana Islands
  • Online Certified Nursing Assistant Career Ladder Program
Tulsa Technology Center
Tulsa, Oklahoma
  • Nurse Aide
Uintah Basin Applied Technology College
Roosevelt, Utah
  • Nursing Assistant
Umpqua Community College
Roseburg, Oregon
  • Nursing Assistant
University of Arkansas Community College at Batesville
Batesvile, Arkansas
  • Nursing Assistant
University of Hawaii-Kauai Community College
Lihue, Hawaii
  • Certified Nurses Aide
Washburn Institute of Technology
Topeka, Kansas
  • Certified Nurse Aide
Washtenaw Community College
Ann Arbor, Michigan
  • Nursing Assistant Skills Training
Waukesha County Technical College
Pewaukee, Wisconsin
  • Nursing Assistant
Wenatchee Valley College
Wenatchee, Washington
  • Nursing Assistant
West Georgia Technical College
Waco, Georgia
  • Nurses Aide and Geriatric Care
West Kentucky Community & Technical College
Paducah, Kentucky
  • Nursing Assistant
Western Iowa Tech Community College
Sioux City, Iowa
  • Nursing Assistant
Western Technical College
La Crosse, Wisconsin
  • Nursing Assistant
Whatcom Community College
Bellingham, Washington
  • Nursing Assistant
Wichita Area Technical College
Wichita, Kansas
  • Certified Nurse Aide
William Rainey Harper College
Palatine, Illinois
  • Certified Nursing Assistant Certificate
Wisconsin Indianhead Technical College
Shell Lake, Wisconsin
  • Nursing Assistant
Yavapai College
Prescott, Arizona
  • Nursing Assistant
York County School of Technology
York, Pennsylvania
  • Nursing Assistant

Still Looking for a Nursing Program?

Here are some of the most popular nursing programs. On each page you will find a detailed writeup of the program, specific courses, and even schools that offer that program that are currently accepting applicants.