Many people want to find a better career, but with a full-time job, it can be difficult to complete the necessary training to enter a new, competitive career field. That is why so many people seek out online classes and Internet courses to complete their certification as a nurse aide. CNAs have one of the most accessible careers in the entire field of health care. There are no requirements for high school degrees, college degrees, and training can be completed in less than a year. So, can you take CNA classes online? The answer is yes, but there are some complications involved in taking virtual classes for your nursing certification.
Firstly, online courses may not be approved by your state board. Because each training program must be approved by the state, there are many programs that do not meet regulations and these programs cannot offer legitimate certification. That does not mean they will not try. Beware programs that claim to provide certificates or official tests, because unless they are backed by the state government, their certificates will not allow you to be employed as a CNA.
Second, there are aspects of the nursing profession that cannot be learned without hands-on experience. Many of the most challenging aspects of the career involve dealing with real people and real problems, most of which have unexpected solutions. The training program you choose should not only give you the factual basis for understanding the job of a nurse, but also give you the skills to perform the job. State requirements mandate that within the necessary instruction hours, at least 20-30 hours must be spent in real life nursing situations under the supervision of a qualified nurse. Training programs must expose CNAs to patients and the work environment so that they are prepared to work on their first day of the job. Many programs allow nurse aides to begin receiving pay while training, because much of the instruction period is spent through on-the-job training.
Third, taking online courses to complete your nurse aide certification can make it much more difficult to pass the certification test on your first try. State-approved nurse aide courses provide a wealth of study materials and support from peer groups. Having direct access to an instructor can be the difference between passing and failing the certification test. Many students get caught up on a single problem and get held back by their inability to understand the confusing concept. Rather than forget it and leave the knowledge behind, students that ask for help or receive feedback from an instructor have much less difficulty absorbing all the new information required of them.
There are still some benefits to taking online CNA classes, even if they aren’t approved by your state board. They can be useful as study tools and sometimes provide additional resources to prepare for the certification test. The convenience of online learning materials makes them worth investigating, but it is better to consider them learning accessories, rather than a main source of information. Some may even be useful after certification is complete, for continuing education or adding additional skills to your nursing resume.