How Much Do CNA Classes Cost?

If you are looking to become a Certified Nurse Aide, you will have to meet a series of requirements, no matter what state you want to practice in. You will need to pass a CNA certification exam to get listed on a state CNA registry. As a part of this process, typically you will need to have to attend and successfully graduate from a state approved CNA training program, or from a group of accredited CNA classes. 

As you evaluate your CNA training options, determining how much your CNA program cost is going to depend on a variety of CNA training program variables. The first of these is whether the classes are going to be online or in person, or in a hybrid model. In today’s current environment of the COVID-19 crisis, many traditional CNA programs are going to an online option, and the cost of these CNA classes is going to reflect this. 

Another factor that may determine how much your CNA classes cost is where you are located. If you are located in a large metropolitan market, such as Los Angeles or Chicago, you may see a higher cost for your CNA program versus if you lived in a smaller market or in a rural area.

Organizations That Offer CNA Training Differ in Cost

An additional factor that may determine the varying degree of cost for your CNA classes is the type of organization that is offering the CNA program. Generally, entities that offer CNA programs can be put into the following categories:

  • Community colleges
  • Non profit healthcare organizations, such as the Red Cross
  • Hospitals
  • Long term care facilities
  • Medical training institutions or organizations
  • Job Corps Centers
  • Vocational and technical schools

It is quite common for CNA programs to provide their training at no cost. These free CNA programs often are offered by long term senior health care facilities that are aggressively promoting their job openings. 

The cost range of CNA programs does have a wide range across the country. In Arizona for example at the Arizona Medical Institute, the cost of the CNA program is $1355. In Florida, at the Immokalee Technical College, the cost of the program is $5205. In the middle of the country, at the Nebraska Methodist College, the cost of the CNA program is $499. In Texas, there are several Job Corp Centers. The costs of CNA program at these Job Corps Center is zero, as they offer training programs for free. In the Pacific Northwest in Oregon, the cost of the CNA program at Mt. Hood Community College of in-state tuition is $59 per credit hour, with the CNA program being a 96 hour course, with the total cost adding up to $5,664.

Other CNA Costs Involved In Your CNA Training

You will need to also consider other costs when deciding to obtain your CNA. These are related to the various requirements that you are needed. These may include:

A personal physical exam

You will need to have a personal medical exam conducted to ensure that you are physically fit. (many programs demand that you are in shape enough to lift 75 pounds) Depending on your insurance and copay situation, this may require out of pocket costs. 

Background check

Nearly every state requires you to have a background check conducted as a part of the requirements to be listed on the CNA registry. Background checks generally cost between $12.00 and $25.00. 

Program supplies

You will need to purchase various supplies, depending on your program. Supplies may include scrubs, non-slip tennis shoes, plus writing materials. You may also have to purchase textbooks, online course packs or course DVDs. Several CNA programs will provide supplies complimentary as a part of enrollment into the CNA program.  

CNA certification exam

The final key piece of CNA certification is to take and pass your state’s CNA exam. There are normally two costs associated with this exam, or the cost of the exam is combined into one fee. Most states have a written CNA exam and a clinical CNA exam. Costs for the total exam vary from $75 to $115, depending on what state you live in. 

Grants and Financial Aid

While some CNA programs are free, if you are attending a CNA program that you are paying for, there are many programs available. Most institutions will offer financial aid programs. Additionally, there are dozens of government programs available for grants and need based scholarships. If you are seeking to work in a healthcare facility that received Medicare funding, then that facility is required to provide you CNA training free of charge. There are also grant funding programs available through the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act. More information on this program is available here at

The CNA schools displayed in this section offer tuition-based programs.

So while obtaining a CNA means that there will likely be some cost involved. How much a CNA classes cost depend a variety of factors. However, given the face that a CNA is a great first step into a meaningful career in the healthcare profession, the return on investment prospects are very strong.

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