Best Online CNA Classes

A certified nursing assistant (CNA) diploma can lead to new career opportunities. Here, we outline top online CNA classes.

February 3, 2022 , Updated on June 29, 2022

Best Online CNA Classes

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Online CNA classes prepare learners to work as certified nursing assistants (CNAs). These professionals help nurses and also work directly with patients. CNAs help patients bathe, dress, and eat. These professionals create comfortable and safe care environments.

Some states let nursing school students work as CNAs after a few semesters. But in most states, CNAs do not need a degree. Instead, many states require a competency exam. Learners can prepare for the exam by taking online CNA classes through a certificate program.

This page lists the best CNA classes online. Read on for answers to common questions and the benefits of earning CNA certification online.

Frequently Asked Questions About CNA Classes

How long does it take to become a CNA?

The amount of required classroom instruction hours and clinical hours vary by state. For example, Missouri requires 75 classroom hours and 100 clinical hours. The time to complete these requirements varies.

Can I become a CNA for free?

The Red Cross offers CNA training, but costs vary by course and provider. Aspiring CNAs can check with their local chapter to learn whether it participates.

How much do CNAs make?

CNAs earn an average annual salary of $30,270, according to Jan. 2022 Payscale data. Salary varies by professionals' location and years of experience.

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What Are the Goals of a CNA Diploma?

A CNA diploma shows that learners successfully completed online CNA classes. CNA diploma and certificate programs cover basic nursing skills, fire safety procedures, and patient rights. Students learn how to work with patients with unique needs. For example, they study best practices for aiding nursing home residents with memory loss.

A CNA diploma requires traditional classroom instruction and hands-on experience. Enrollees may need to complete in-person labs and assessments. They work alongside current CNAs and assist registered nurses (RNs) with helping patients eat, bathe, and walk.

The time it takes to earn a CNA diploma depends on state requirements. Certified CNAs can enter the workforce or continue their education to become licensed professional nurses.

Why Get a CNA Certification Online?

Online learning provides many benefits, including affordability, convenience, and flexibility. See below for some advantages of earning CNA certification online.

1. Online CNA Classes Can Cost Less

Students may save money by taking CNA classes online. Some schools waive fees for in-person activities and services. Others charge similar rates for in-state learners and online learners. Online enrollees can save money by avoiding a commute and parking fees.

2. Higher Earning Potential

Some hospitals hire orderlies and assistants without formal certification. However, many health facilities pay certified professionals higher salaries. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), nursing assistants earn a median annual salary of $30,830. States with higher costs of living often pay more. For example, Californian nursing assistants earn a mean annual wage of $39,280.

3. Positive Job Outlook

The BLS projects jobs for nursing assistants to grow 8% from 2020-2030, which is on pace with all occupations. However, the BLS projects a greater need for more advanced nursing positions. For example, the BLS projects jobs for nurse practitioners to grow 45% from 2020-2030.

4. Virtual Learners Experience Flexibility

Many online CNA classes run asynchronously. This format lets students watch lectures and complete assignments when convenient. Learners who prefer more accountability can enroll in a synchronous program. This format includes required virtual classes at set times.

5. Enhance Others' Lives

CNAs can positively impact patients' lives through small actions. They provide comfortable and clean environments for people to heal. CNAs talk with patients and encourage them. Helping patients eat can give them proper nutrition. Assisting patients with moving and bathing may prevent uncomfortable bedsores.

How Long Does It Take to Become a Nurse - Nursing Timeline

Online CNA classes prepare students for the workforce. CNAs can also work part time while completing online advanced certification courses.

Nurses may spend 2-10 years on their education. The amount of time depends on their desired career and salary. For example, nurse practitioners with a master of science in nursing can write prescriptions in some states. They typically earn more than RNs with a bachelor of science in nursing.

See below for a typical time commitment for each nursing degree type.

Nursing Timeline
Nursing Degree Level Completion Time
Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) 1-2 years
Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) 2-3 years
Registered Nurse (RN) 4 years
Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) 4-5 years
Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) 1.5-3 years
Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) 1-3 years

What Are the Requirements for a CNA Certification?

Aspiring CNAs need classroom and clinical hours before taking a certification exam. Requirements vary by state.

Most CNA certification exams include a written component and a demonstration component. Students show their patient transportation and assistance skills. The exam tests knowledge on basic nursing skills.

Many states accept the National Nurse Aide Assessment Program Exam for certification. Exam fees vary by state.

Some states require continual employment for a CNA certification to stay valid. Only a few states require continuing education. Fortunately, every state allows renewal for expired licenses.

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Top Online RN to BSN Programs

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Best Online CNA Classes

  1. Hazard Community and Technical College
    Location

    Hazard, KY

    Tuition

    $6044

    Located in Hazard, Kentucky, HCTC offers a four-month nurse aide program that combines lectures with hands-on laboratory and clinical experience. The program caps enrollment at 15 students per class.

    Learners interested in earning an online CNA degree can choose from two program options: nursing assistant skills and Kentucky medication aide. The nursing assistant skills program prepares enrollees to earn placement on the Kentucky Nurse Aide Registry. The Kentucky medication aide option trains learners to administer medications under a licensed nurse's supervision.

    Applicants need a high school or GED diploma or a 10th-grade or higher score on the TABE. They also need six months of experience as a nursing assistant within the past two years. HCTC is regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

  2. Maysville Community and Technical College
    Location

    Maysville, KY

    Tuition

    $5793

    Based in Maysville, Kentucky, Maysville offers an associate degree nursing program. The certified nurse aide (CNA) program prepares enrollees to take the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN). Learners can pursue either a Medicaid nurse aide certificate or a Kentucky medication aide certificate. Graduates may work in hospitals, clinics, or educational facilities.

    Learners pursuing this online CNA degree can complete coursework asynchronously. However, enrollees must attend an on-campus clinical lab. All applicants need a "basic" or better score on the Test of Essential Academic Skills.

    Maysville is regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

  3. Somerset Community College
    Location

    Somerset, KY

    Tuition

    $5481

    Somerset, Kentucky-based SCC offers a nurse aid certificate that prepares students to become state certified as nurse aids. Once students complete the 75-hour course and pass with a C or higher, they may take the state nurse aide exam. The Cabinet for Health Services Department of Medicaid Services mandates this program's training requirements.

    Learners pursuing this online CNA degree must complete a background check and drug screen. Enrollees also need white scrubs and shoes for hands-on training in local nursing homes.

    Certificate-holders may work in hospitals and nursing centers caring for patients under a licensed nurse's supervision. SCC is regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

  4. Ashland Community and Technical College
    Location

    Ashland, KY

    Tuition

    $5733

    ACTC, based in Ashland, Kentucky, offers a practical nursing diploma program that prepares graduates to work as licensed practical nurses (LPNs). The program emphasizes the importance of nursing in maintaining health and preventing illness.

    Enrollees can pursue either a Medicaid nurse aide certificate or a Kentucky medication aide certificate. Students may also continue their education by pursuing an LPN-to-RN degree.

    Graduates may work in hospitals, long-term care facilities, or doctors' offices under the supervision of registered nurses (RNs) or physicians.

    ACTC is regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

  5. State Fair Community College
    Location

    Sedalia, MO

    Tuition

    $4351

    SFCC, located in Sedalia, Missouri, offers a certificate in practical nursing and an associate of applied science in nursing degree. Students in the competency-based bi-level program can become licensed practical nurses (LPNs) in their first year. Aspiring registered nurses can then transition to the associate program in their second year. The program offers courses in a hybrid delivery format. Students attend courses online and at SFCC's Clinton campus.

    Applicants need an overall minimum 2.5 GPA and a minimum 2.75 GPA in all prerequisite or required courses. They must also demonstrate professionalism, empathy, and excellent interpersonal skills. Current LPNs and paramedics can benefit from advanced placement opportunities. Articulation agreements ensure that students who wish to continue their education can transfer SFCC credits to four-year schools.

    SFCC is regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

Reviewed by:

Portrait of Brandy Gleason, MSN, MHA, BC-NC

Brandy Gleason, MSN, MHA, BC-NC

Brandy Gleason is a nursing professional with nearly 20 years of varied nursing experience. Gleason currently teaches as an assistant professor of nursing within a prelicensure nursing program and coaches graduate students. Her passion and area of research centers around coaching nurses and nursing students to build resilience and avoid burnout.

Gleason is a paid member of our Healthcare Review Partner Network. Learn more about our review partners here.

AffordableCollegesOnline.org is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site.

Best Online Programs

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AffordableCollegesOnline.org is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site.

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