Certified Nursing Assistant, or CNA, programs are designed to help you pass the state competency exam in order to earn your license. After completing your program, however, it pays to devote a little time to studying specifically for the exam. Practice CNA exams are readily available online, and it pays to take advantage of them. These practice tests reinforce the things you learned during classes. More importantly, they give you a clear idea about what to expect when you take the actual exam.
How to Use Practice Exams to Study for CNA Licensing Exam
Although different states use different CNA licensing exams, they typically use similar standards. Even if you don't know which exact exam you'll be taking, use these tips to make the most of the practice exams you take:
- Start with a Study Guide - Just as practice exams are easy to find online, study guides are too. Find one and use it to gain a basic understanding of the exam's format and other key information. With a clearer understanding of the exam itself, you'll get even more out of your practice tests.
- Complete as Many Practice Exams as Possible - The Internet is awash in free CNA practice exams. Some are modeled after specific tests like the National Nurse Aide Assessment Program, or NNAAP. Others are merely long lists of multiple-choice questions based on common areas of study for CNAs. All practice exams are helpful, so complete as many as you can.
- Learn From Your Mistakes - Online practice CNA exams typically show you your results right away. Keep a file of questions you answer incorrectly, and include the correct answer as well. This information will be invaluable as you study for your exam because it will show you which areas need improvement.
- Focus on Problem Areas - After taking dozens of tests, you should have a decent file of questions that stumped you. Use this information to create flash cards and other study aids. The goal is to gain a clear, complete understanding of the topics that don't come naturally to you so that if they pop up on the actual exam, you'll know how to answer them correctly.
- Get a Study Buddy - Pair up with someone from your CNA program and work on practice exams together. You can also ask each other multiple-choice questions from these practice tests to see if you can answer them correctly without being told the different choices. If you can do that, you're sure to pass your CNA exam with flying colors.
- Study for the Clinical Skills Portion Too - Don't forget to practice for the clinical skills portion of the test too. This section is a bit trickier to study for because there aren't any practice exams per se. However, a wealth of information about the types of skills you'll need to demonstrate is available online. Find someone on whom you can practice the various skills, which typically include feeding, cleaning, and changing patients, to ensure that you can complete them competently during the exam.
With so much on the line, studying for your impending CNA exam can be pretty overwhelming. By availing yourself of the many free CNA practice tests that are available online, you will have the confidence you need to ace the test the first time around. The extra studying will pay off when you easily obtain your CNA license.