Requirements to Become a CNA

Requirements to Become a CNA


To become a Certified Nursing Assistant, you must do exactly like the title says and become certified. As a CNA, you will be responsible for the overall care of the patient and will be required to address their medical and daily life needs. This high level of responsibility, therefore requires that you receive official training, monitored practice and have performed adequately in a standardized test.

Although we wish there was just one set of requirements when it comes to being a CNA, the requirements are different depending on the state you are applying to work in. Each state has their own test, and have different requirements. These differences can range from the time required as an intern, age, level of prior education and forms of identification.

General CNA Qualification Requirements

However, what is unanimous between all the states, are the following requirements:

    1. You will need to pass an accredited course.
  1. You must pass that state’s respective CNA exam.
  2. You must pass a Practical Exam that will monitor your ability to perform basic CNA duties.
  3. You must have a certain amount of on duties experience as an intern or working in a lab.
  4. You must register within the state that you took the tests in.

Because of these requirements, if you were to certify in the state of Virginia, but then move to Vermont, you would have to re-certify and meet the requirements of Vermont.

However, if the state that you are certifying in is a state that has adopted the NNAAP CNA Exam standard, then your certification will carry over to any other state that also acknowledges the NNAAP standard. To find out what states accept NNAAP certification and learn more about this testing standard, click here.

It is also important to note that out CNA practice test was designed to mimic the NNAAP standard. We chose this standard because almost 50% of all U.S. States use this standard for their CNA testing. Furthermore, it is from our experience that the NNAAP standard is the hardest of the state exams and would, therefore, be a better challenge to our readers.


Prior to commencing your CNA studies, make sure you check your respective state’s certification requirements. Although they each have subtle differences, you can be sure that every one of them follows the above requirements to a certain extent.

If you do happen to move, please understand that your current certification may hold no water in the next state, regardless of the amount of experience you have in the profession. You, like all others, will have to retake that state’s test and perform their practical portion. Just make sure that you verify that particular state’s requirements prior to making your move.

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