• Health care demands are on the rise and the need for caring, trained professionals is greater than ever. It’s all about quality of care while improving quality of life. Your desire to help others can make a difference. Take your first step toward a rewarding career in health care.

    You will benefit from a Basic Nursing Assistant Training Program approved by the Illinois Department of Health (IDPH). Before you leave high school, you will learn the basics of patient care while gaining confidence through clinical experiences. This program is also an excellent head start on the pathway to an advanced nursing career, with college credit while in high school. Most colleges, including College of DuPage require certification as a  Nursing Assistant prior to admission to their nursing programs.

    What will my classes be like?

    See the world through a healthcare provider’s eyes as you learn about caring for patients; reporting observations; and understanding body systems, the nature of disease, and common health problems. Master the medical terms and communication skills critical to an effective healthcare environment. You will learn how to safely move, lift, and transport patients; measure and record vital signs; perform personal care and technical skills; and respond to a variety of patient conditions..

    Your acquired knowledge of basic healthcare skills, even if you do not achieve certification, will prepare you to work in assisted living facilities as well as private duty home care.

    Certification Eligibility: You are eligible to take the state competency exam if you successfully complete the program and meet IDPH certification criteria, including:


    • Maintaining a grade of 78% or higher for each grading period through the year
    • Passing all required clinical competency skills
    • Maintaining consistent professional conduct in the classroom, at your home high school, and in the clinical setting
    • Strict adherence to program attendance requirements
    • Possessing a valid Social Security number
    • Completing the minimum mandatory Saturday or after school clinical hours
    • Maintaining a 78% module test score average at the end of semester one and prior  to state exam registration at the end of semester two.
    • Pass the final exam with a 78% or above score.


    Upon passing the state exam, you will be certified as a Nursing Assistant (CNA), enabling you to seek employment in long-term care facilities, agency home care, hospitals, or other healthcare facilities. After high school graduation, you may also apply to a nursing degree program.


    Laurie Bartels, R.N. - laurieb@tcdupage.org

    Betty Jo Rispens, R.N. - bettyjor@tcdupage.org 




    The topics below are among the essential skills for this program. This is not a comprehensive list of all available skills and goals, but given to show the scope of the curriculum. Changes may occur year to year based on industry input, change in focus, or other factors. Please contact the program instructor or coordinator for additional information.

    Role of the Nursing Assistant

    Effective Observation/Reporting/Communications

    Healthy/Safe Work Environment

    • Infection control
    • Body mechanics
    • Fire extinguisher / MSDS use
    • Residents' Rights
    • Basic emergency care
    • CPR/AED procedures
    • Bloodborne pathogens
    • Safety

    Moving, Lifting, Transporting Patients

    Patient/Resident Hygiene and Personal Care

    Nutrition / Feeding

    Measuring / Recording Vital Signs

    Responsibilities of a CNA regarding Technical Procedures

    • Assisting the RN with special treatments and procedures
    • Application of heat and cold
    • Care for the surgical patient
    • Oral Hygiene
    • Shaving
    • Bathing
    • Bed Making
    • Transferring (Mechanical Lift)
    • Calculating Intake and Output
    • Measuring Height and Weight
    • Positioning

    Human Physical/Emotional Growth & Development

    Body Systems: Structures & Functions

    Alzheimer’s Disease & Related Dementia

    Common Health Problems/Diseases

    Role of the Home Health Aide


    Employment Skills

    §         Career assessment

    §         Résumé & Portfolio Development

    §         Application, interview, job search