You must complete a CNA training program and complete the CNA certification exam before you can work as a certified nursing assistant(in most states). If you are about to enroll in a course or are currently attending a CNA exam, you might be worrying about taking the CNA exam. It will help you to understand a little more about the exam.
The first thing to keep in mind if you are training to become a CNA is that you need to pay close attention during your CNA training. Your course will be designed to prepare you for the CNA examination. You must carefully follow all classroom lectures, lab work and hands on studies. You will learn through studying and through practice. Check out our online CNA study guide to get a comprehensive review of the exam and ensure you are well prepared.
Written Portion of the CNA exam
A CNA certification exam is divided into two different parts, both of which will be completed in the same day. You will begin by taking a written examination. The written portion of the test will cover a lot of the material that you learned during your lectures and labs. Questions will pertain to patient care, patient charting and other important lessons and skills you learned during your training course.
The written part of the test will be comprised of multiple choice questions that you must answer. You will usually have up to two hours to complete this part of the test. In some settings, every student must finish this part of the test, before anyone can begin the clinical portion of the test.
Skills Portionof the CNA exam
Your second part of the test will be where you demonstrate your ability to complete tasks that you will be performing as a certified nursing assistant. Of course, you cannot demonstrate all skills during the test. Most tests will have you complete somewhere between 3 and 6 different tasks. You will be modeling these tasks on a person who is acting as a patient. Many test programs will require you to bring a friend or family member with you to act as your patient.
It is important to realize that when you are asked to complete a particular task, you must perform all steps that you would perform in a clinical setting to complete that task. For example, if you are asked to take a patient’s blood pressure, you do not merely walk over to the patient and start taking their blood pressure. You must first demonstrate your ability to properly wash your hands before working with the patient.
You must remember to knock on the patient’s door to let them know you are entering the room. Introduce yourself to your practice patient and tell them what you are going to be doing before performing the task. For example, you might say, “Good Morning Mrs. Jones. I am Jane and I will be working as your nursing assistant today. I need a moment to take your blood pressure reading.”
It is important to follow all steps that you learned during your CNA classes in order to pass your certification exam. Students often forget some basic steps when they are taking the examination. This is not hard to do since you are not yet working in the clinical setting and as a result of being nervous for the exam.
CNA Certification Exam Tips
Here are some things you must remember when taking the exam. Show the instructor that you know that you must wash your hands before interacting with a patient. Demonstrate the fact that you know you must knock on a patient’s door before entering the room. If there is not a door to a room where you are testing, mention to the examiner that this is when you would knock on the door before entering the room. Remember to introduce yourself to your model patient. Close the privacy curtain in their room (or mention that you would be closing this curtain now if you were in a clinical setting).
Even when you are testing, it is important to tell your model patient what you are going to be doing before demonstrating your skill. For example, let him or her know that you are going to be repositioning them in bed or helping them to get dressed and groomed for the day. You never want to just barge into a patient’s room without telling them what you will be doing.
When you are taking the skills portion of your certification exam, there are a couple other things to remember. It is important to put up a patient’s side rails if you are going to be moving them in their bed or performing another task where you need to make certain they do not fall. Side rails should be put back down after you are finished with your task unless there is an order to always have their side rail up for safety.
If one of your tasks that you must demonstrate is to brush a patient’s hair or help them to dress, remember to ask your model patient what they would like. For example, you can ask if they have a particular outfit they would like to wear today or how they would like their hair to be styled. You must always help a patient to preserve their dignity. This must be demonstrated even during your certification exam.
Taking the CNA exam will not be as difficult as you might think if you have followed along during your course. You should look over all handouts and tests you took during your training course. In addition, you can find practice exams and study guides online that you can purchase for use when studying for the exam. Enlist the help of family and friends to allow you to practice some of your CNA skills before the test. Remember, it will be possible to retake the test if you fail on the first try.