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Things to Ask CNA Degree Programs

Now that you have decided on which nursing program to enroll in, as well as whether to attend your classes on campus or on the internet, you can use the following checklist to start narrowing down your options. As you probably are aware, there are many CNA schools and colleges within Alabama and the United States. So it is necessary to decrease the number of schools to select from in order that you will have a workable list. As we already mentioned, the location of the school as well as the expense of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the primary two points that you will look at. But as we also stressed, they should not be your only qualifiers. So before making your final selection, use the following questions to see how your pick measures up 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 acknowledged accrediting agency. Aside from helping confirm that you obtain a quality education and employment in the Opelika AL area, it may help in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not offered for non-accredited schools.
  • Certification Preparation. Certification prerequisites for CNAs vary from state to state. For CNA certification, passing a state specific exam is required.  Many states require a specified number of clinical hours be completed, as well. It's important that the school you are attending not only provides an exceptional education, but also readies you to comply with the minimum certification requirements for Alabama or the state where you will be practicing.
  • Reputation. Check internet rating services to see what the assessments are for all of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews too. Additionally, get in touch with the Alabama school certification or licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some Opelika AL healthcare organizations you're interested in working for after graduation and ask what their judgements are of the schools as well.
  • Graduation and Job Placement Rates. Find out from the CNA schools 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 displeased with the program and dropped out. It's also important that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only substantiate that the school has a superb reputation within the Opelika AL healthcare community, but that it also has the network of contacts to assist students gain employment.
  • Internship Programs. The most ideal way to get experience as a certified nursing assistant is to work in a clinical setting. Almost all nursing degree programs require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for certification as well. Check if the schools have associations with nearby Opelika AL hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placing of students in internships.