More and more people are becoming interested in the CNA, or Certified Nursing Assistant, certification. CNAs are an essential part of the paraprofessional healthcare community, and perform tasks as variegated as providing care for patients in hospitals who require assistance with the tasks of daily living to caring for the elderly in nursing homes. CNAs can not perform medical procedures, and without quite a bit of additional — and unrelated — training. However, the basic process for receiving the CNA certification is fairly straightforward, and can be accomplished in a number of ways.

Online CNA Classes

In lieu of the traditional pathway of studying for a single semester at a community college, many centers have begun to offer CNA certification online. Many people have, wisely, asked whether or not these classes are “legitimate”. Insofar as the accreditation is concerned, the answer is, sometimes: So long as you are registered with the Family Care Safety Registry (FCSR), you will be considered a legitimate professional capable and qualified to perform the tasks required of a certified nursing assistant. You will be able to apply for and receive any CNA certification-requiring jobs that do not need additional training of you.

Differences Between Online and In-Person CNA Classes

The obvious primary difference between online classes and those you attend in-person is the fact that you don’t have to go anywhere to do classes online! This is the obvious motivation to take an online class, for most people. Another important difference is that online CNA classes can often — though not always — be completed on your own time. This means that you’ll be able to do the assignments, readings, and lecture viewings whenever you want to, or can, do them, as opposed to having to plan your day around the schedule of a professor or class that might be inconvenient for you to attend.

This is an advantage for most people, but, on the other hand, might encourage you to delay finishing your work, or otherwise take longer than necessary to complete the course. If you’re capable of staying diligent, however, this shouldn’t be a problem. And, in any case, if the course is truly one which you can complete on your own time, it’s no serious problem if you don’t finish “on time”, as “on time” is determined by personal standards, rather than any official due dates.

To recap: Yes, online CNA classes are legitimate, as long as they list you under the FCSR, the official regulating body for certified nursing assistants. If they don’t, and a potential employer contacts them to verify your credentials, it won’t matter if you’re a better CNA or know more than anyone else on the subject matter from the course materials you’ve studied. Even if a CNA program claims to list you under this registry after graduating, it’s always a good idea to check with the FCSR to see if they recognize the accreditation before signing up.