How to pass a CNA Certification Test

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The issue of how to pass a CNA Certification test becomes vital and important in the face of the rising demand for Certified Nursing Assistants.  Many are even contemplating on shifting careers to be able to work as a CNA in a healthcare facility.  With the recession leaving many Americans jobless, the healthcare field has become more attractive for them.  However, working in this field and making a successful career change requires satisfactorily passing the CNA Certification test.

The CNA is primarily tasked with assisting registered nurses with their duties.  Part of the requisites on how to pass a CNA Certification test is understanding that the entire procedure is not very simple.  Candidates should comprehend that being aware of the common pitfalls is an equally effective strategy in passing the certification test.  Choosing a quality training center can also help candidates to pass the examination.  Here are some steps to consider:

  1. Be familiar with the components of the CNA examination.

If you are not familiar with the test you are taking, the higher the possibility of failing.  Therefore, to know how to pass a CNA Certification test, you need to be aware that it is divided into two sections.  The first section is composed of the written test where the candidate is required to answer a series of questions.  This forms part of the theoretical component of the CNA examination.

The second section is reserved to test the practical skills of the candidates.  Passing both sections of the CNA Certification test is a must for every candidate.  Candidates must be aware that both written and skills tests are given during the same day, with those passing both sections being included in the Nurse Aide Registry.  The actual number of questions can vary significantly depending on the state administering the exam, with many having seventy questions on the average.

For the written test section, multiple-choice format is implemented, with questions all in English format.  The passing percentage for the written test questions is determined by the state individually.  Spanish and oral versions of the test section are available for those who are not comfortable with written examination.  This type of flexibility is appreciated by many of the candidates taking the examination.

Competency in the performance of five basic hands-on skills remains the concentration of the second section of the CNA Certification test.  The five skills are randomly selected from 25 different skill sets that are commonly practiced by nursing aides.  A designated evaluator is tasked with grading the performance of the candidates to ensure that they skills are performed in the correct order to have a passing grade.

  1. Understand the importance of the hands-on section.

The hands-on portion of the examination is equally important and should therefore be given ample attention and consideration.  It is important to be aware that during the hands-on test, is conducted in an environment similar to the clinical practice of a nursing aide practitioner.  The tools, equipment, and other essentials that will be required for the skills examinations will be made available to the candidate with questions allowed to be asked prior to the commencement of the examination.

All five skill sets must be passed by the candidate within a specified time period, which is normally around 25 to 30 minutes.  One of the five basic skills that will be chosen randomly includes the taking, measuring, and recording of the findings.  Some of the more commonly measured results during the examination involve the blood pressure, weight, and pulse of the client among others.

  1. Correct preparation for the CNA Certification test.

The next step on how to pass a CNA Certification test is to have the right type of preparation.  Now that you know what are the sections to be covered as well as how they will be administered the preparation of the candidate becomes more relevant.  Having the right type of preparation does not only mean ensuring that you will pass the examinations, but most probably get a respectable score in the process.

One of the most basic ways to prepare for the CNA Certification test is to take all the questions that are being asked in the syllabus.  You may also visit forums, references, and other similar materials online to not only expand your knowledge and understanding, but boost your confidence level as well.  Keep in mind that the written test section is more about memorization and familiarization.

  1. Learn to prepare for the practical skills test.

After establishing a method of review for the written examination portion, you also need to allocate some decent time to be proficient in the practical test section.  To understand how to pass a CNA Certification test, you can start by volunteering in different healthcare facilities in your locality.  There are likewise a couple of videos on the internet that will help you familiarize with the different skills.

To make the practical skills test preparation more meaningful, you should be aware of the different skills regularly practiced by nursing aides.  You likewise have to know the selection process for the skills examination, to be prepared on how to tackle potential challenges.  In general, any five of these skills should be done in the right order to get a passing mark for the certification.

  • Wash hands
  • Use one knee-high elastic stocking
  • Help to ambulate with transfer belt
  • Assist in the use of bedpan
  • Clean dentures
  • Count and record radial pulse of patients
  • Count and record respirations
  • Wear and remove gloves and gown
  • Dress patients with damaged right arm
  • Feed patients incapable of self-feeding
  • Modified bed bath
  • Make occupied beds
  • Measure and record blood pressure
  • Measure and record urinary output
  • Measure and record weight of ambulatory patient
  • Execute passive range of motion exercises for the knees and ankles of patients
  • Passive range of motion for shoulder of patients
  • Turn patient’s on their side
  • Catheter care for female patients
  • Fingernail care
  • Food care
  • Mouth care
  • Perinatal care for female patients
  • Transfer from bed to wheelchair with transfer belt
  1. Know resolutions for failing the CNA examination.

Candidates should not worry too much if they fail to pass the CNA Certification test on their first try.  This is because candidates are allowed to take it thrice, with certain distances on the testing period.  Failing to pass the examination after three tries however will require candidates to take the training from the start.  Validity of any license issued after passing the CNA examination remains valid only in the state of issue and allows practice only in that state.

These are five easy steps to follow to have a working knowledge and understanding of how to pass a CNA Certification test.

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