When you start to study to become a Certified Nursing Assistant, the amount of information you are learning may seem overwhelming. The written section of the certification test is timed and usually has at least 60 multiple choice questions. There are distinct fields of knowledge that are important for your job as a CNA, and the certification test is designed to evaluate your grasp of this knowledge. Rather than studying your entire training course from start to finish, consider the basis for the certification test to decide what you most need to study.
The content of the test is built around several key nursing principles. Every question can be categorized along the lines of Physical Care Skills, Psychosocial Care Skills, and Role of the Nurse Aide. Physical care skills are the greatest proportion of the test and the questions will be based on caretaking procedures for patients. Because the actual performance of the skills will be evaluated in the skills section of the certification test, it’s important to remember the reasons behind each action for the written test. Infection control, emergency procedures, and data recording are all necessary skills, but understanding the reasons for them is critical to the written test.
Psychosocial Care Skills and the Role of the Nurse Aide are the other two fields on the written test, but account for fewer questions. Psychosocial care is about the emotional well-being of patients and the importance of personality and compassion. The role of the nurse aide section asks about details on patient rights, nurse aide communication, and the legal or ethical considerations related to providing patient care. These sections take up less of the written test, but represent very important aspects of the nursing profession.
There are many different ways to prepare for the certification test, and each has different merits for every individual. One of the most common ways to prepare for the test is to organize a study group amongst your peers in the nurse aide training program. Having peers and a support system can remove a lot of psychological and emotional strain from the study process, but can also help to better prepare you. Sharing insights with classmates is a great way to solidify the knowledge in your own mind, and if there is something unclear to you, a study-buddy might have the right answer. Of course, independent study is always a viable option as well. People who are well-suited for individual test-prep like to move at their own pace and manage their time well. Prepare for the test as best suits you.