When it comes to earning your credentials as a Certified Nursing Assistant or CNA, it’s not just about how well you perform on the multiple choice test. Because being a CNA is about caring for people in real life, you also will have to pass a hands-on skills test.
Versions of the state will vary state-to-state, but it is safe to say you will be tested on what you were taught in class.
Take a look at some recommended tips that will help you pass your exam.
Master the skills you were taught in training
Take every single task seriously and practice them again and again. These are the same skills that will be on the test. If you are experiencing any trouble or have questions, don’t feel like you are bothering your instructor when you ask them for help.
It’s better to need help in training than when it’s time to take the test, when you won’t be able to get assistance.
Consider the skills you may be tested on
You can ask your instructor which skills will be on the test or if there is a practice test that you can take. Some skills on the test may include: handwashing, making an unoccupied bed, changing an occupied bed, changing the position of the patient , taking vitals signs and so on.
You can expect to have to demonstrate three to six skills during the course of the test, experts say, and if your instructor doesn’t give you a list of what may be on the test, make your own.
Practice on family and friends as you learn skills
It’s probably not too much to ask a friend or relative to pretend to be a patient so you can sharpen your skills. This is something you can actually do as you learn hands-on skills in your training, so you’re not in practice overload just for the test. If your practice those skills all along, you won’t stress yourself out just before the test.
CNA training programs vary, but you will at least have several weeks where you are learning skills so try to practice to perfect the technique while it is fresh on your mind.
Perform each skill exactly how it was taught to you. Learn how to perform each task with the same basic steps, unless instructed otherwise by your teacher. So that means always knock on a patient’s door before you come in and always wash your hands before you go near the patients. These extras can also earn you extra points on the exam.
Test time: Listen to the instructions carefully
During the test, don’t assume you know what the instructor is going to say before he or she says it. Listen very carefully to the instructions given and ask for clarification if you don’t understand something.
Preparation is key for building your confidence to handle your exam, especially the portion where you have to physically demonstrate your skills. So while your classes and training may seem tedious, remember those sessions will equip you for this very moment.