CNA Skills Help

As part of your CNA exam, you will need to demonstrate efficiency in performing various practical skills. The skills part is by far the most important part of the exam and constitutes the most marks.  While you will learn these skills during the hands-on part of your training course, we have decided to offer them in a condensed version to help you revise just before the exam.

Each skill listed below has a brief guide as well as a video demonstrating the best way to perform the skill.

Hand washing

Application of Anti – Embolism stockings

Assists to ambulate using transfer belt

Assists with use of bedpan

Cleans upper or lower denture

Counts & records radial pulse

County and records respirations

Donning and removing PPE (gown & gloves)

Dressing a dependant patient

Feeds client who cannot feed self

Gives modified bed bath (face & one arm, hand & underarm)

Makes an occupied bed (client does not need assistance to turn)

Measures and records blood pressure

Measures & records urinary output

Measures & records height and weight of ambulatory client

Performs passive range of motion for one knee & one ankle

Positions on side

• Provides catheter care for female

Provides fingernail care on one hand

• Provides foot care on one foot.

Provides mouth care

Provides perineal care (peri-care) for a patient

• Transfers from bed to wheelchair using transfer belt

Additional Skills:

Assisting Residents Who Have Memory Loss, Confusion or Understanding Problems

Communicating With Residents Who Have Problems with Speech

Communicating With The Hearing Impaired

How to Start Conversations and Send Messages

Depending on the area where you are doing your Nursing assistant exam, the skills part of the test can be a little different.  In some states the number of skills tested will be between three to five while others will make you perform as many as 6 different skills. You can however rest assured that there is little difference in the performance of particular skills on a state by state basis.

One of the best ways to study these CNA skills is to perform them on friends. You can have a friend act as a patient while you practice on her.

As always, you can send us an email using the contact page at the top if you have any suggestion or are finding a skill difficult to master. We will do our best to help.

If you haven’t yet found a training center, you might be interested in our articles on free CNA classes in Texas and free CNA training in Georgia

9 Responses to CNA Skills Help

  1. meria February 21, 2012 at 9:01 pm #

    I have some problems with taking blood pressure I never can get where it starts any suggestions?

    • Admin February 21, 2012 at 9:35 pm #

      This might be helpful:

    • Nicole Spitz August 5, 2012 at 12:57 am #

      when you are taking someone’s blood pressure, apply the the blood pressure cuff, and feel for a Radial pulse…. ( on the wrist) pump the cuff until you stop feeling the radial pulse, so lets say you stop feeling it at 120 add 30 to that 120 which will be 150. inflate the cufff… now when you go to take the acutal blood pressure, the top number should be any where between 150-120….

    • yolanda January 17, 2013 at 11:15 pm #

      to take an accurate blood pressure you must first pump it up to about 160 then place your stethascope right below in order to hear the patient or residents heartbeat then slowly release the pressure valve on the cuff and the top number of the BP is when you first hear the heart beat then the bottom number is when you last hear the heart beat I recommend letting the pressure out to where it releases about 3 seconds at a time that way you have time to track the beat and can clearly hear when the beat stops

  2. Sarah February 22, 2012 at 1:34 am #

    I was wondering if the Job Corps students use a specific CNA textbook or another alternative form of text. Could you please tell me either what the text is or what kind of information is used and possibly where to find it?
    Thank You!!!

  3. Linda leppert December 26, 2012 at 4:41 am #

    Please help. I am re-taking my skills test soon.. I want to pass. I am not sure on the partial bedbath. I live in calif., the test seems to be different than all the videos. how many washcloths would you need for the bath??(to rinse also) Do you use a new cloth for washing, rinsing a each body part? Seems like alot. The videos show one washcloth, but in calif we cannot contaminate our basin of water.. Please help with this.. thank you.

  4. Sandra Murdock May 4, 2014 at 3:41 pm #

    I studied the cna course in Atlanta ,Ga and failed due to going over my time. I would like to take a brush up course here in ny but i don t know where to go and then i d like to take my skills test again before september. I d also like the name of a textbook i could study and can i use the same Ga guidebook. Thanks for any help you can give me. Sincerely, Sandra Muedock

  5. Kimberly Loring May 8, 2014 at 3:56 pm #

    I am a Certified nursing assistant and I am moving to St Louis MO from Idaho and I just learned that I have to Challenge the CNA test in Missouri. So would this website help me understand the requirements in the skills and the written test to pass the challenge test? or is each state have the same CNA state tests?

  6. Latisha Gibson May 21, 2022 at 3:09 am #

    I took my skills test today and didn’t pass due to feeling very overwhelmed. The sad part is that I have been working in the medical field for years. They are in need of CNA’S. I have anxiety now that I am older. I am not use to someone standing over me and timing me. I also feel as if they need to not have so many skills for us to do and that 3 should be enough to pass us.

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