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Questions to Ask CNA Training Classes
Once you have chosen which nursing program to enroll in, along with whether to attend your classes on campus or on the internet, you can use the following checklist to begin narrowing down your choices. As you undoubtedly realize, there are many CNA schools and colleges within Alabama and the United States. So it is necessary to decrease the number of schools to choose from in order that you will have a manageable list. As we already discussed, the location of the school and the cost of tuition are probably going to be the first two things that you will look at. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So prior to making your ultimate decision, use the following questions to see how your selection compares to the other programs.
- Accreditation. It's a good idea to make sure that the certificate program in addition to the school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. Besides helping verify that you get a premium education and employment in the Opelika AL area, it may help in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not provided for non-accredited schools.
- Certification Preparation. Certification criteria for CNAs vary from state to state. For CNA certification, passing a state specific exam is required. Some states require a specified number of clinical hours be performed, as well. It's essential that the school you are enrolled in not only provides a top-notch education, but also prepares you to meet the minimum certification requirements for Alabama or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Look at internet rating companies to see what the reviews are for all of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews too. In addition, contact the Alabama school certification or licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some Opelika AL healthcare organizations you're interested in working for after graduation and ask what their assessments are of the schools as well.
- Graduation and Job Placement Rates. Find out from the CNA programs you are looking at what their graduation rates are as well as how long on average it takes students to complete their programs. A low graduation rate may be an indication that students were unhappy with the program and dropped out. It's also imperative that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only confirm that the school has a superb reputation within the Opelika AL healthcare community, but that it also has the network of relationships to help students attain employment.
- Internship Programs. The best way to obtain experience as a certified nursing assistant is to work in a clinical environment. Almost all nursing degree programs require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour mandates for certification also. Check if the schools have associations with nearby Opelika AL hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placement of students in internships.