CNA Classes in Arkansas (Top Schools)

Arkansas map

A Certified Nurse Aide (CNA) will need to complete the following to get certified in Arkansas:

  • State-approved Nurse Assistant Training Program (NATP)
  • Arkansas Nurse Aide Competency Exam (ARNACE)

Both are under the jurisdiction of the Office of Long Term Care (OLTC).

After you complete these two, you’ll be placed in the Nurse Aide Registry (NAR) as a CNA.

Taking on a CNA Training Program in Arkansas

For you to be a CNA, you must enroll in a state-approved NATP.

This is because these programs offered by training facilities comply with the state’s standard curriculum.

Meaning, you’ll be trained in the profession equipped with basic knowledge and skills.

During the program, you’ll undergo 90 hours of training broken down into the following:

  • 16 hours of classroom instruction
  • 74 hours of clinical skills training, with 16 hours of supervised practical training

If you’ve taken a facility-based program, then you must complete at least 10 hours of training per week.

Do note that you can only work in-staff at that facility if you pass the ARNACE within 120 days of training completion.

After the program, you’ll receive a Certificate of Completion.

Below is a list of CNA training facilities you can consider enrolling in.

19 CNA Schools in Arkansas

School NameAddress
Arkansas Academy for Nursing AssistantsLonoke, AR 72086
Arkansas Residential Assisted Living Association, Inc.Cabot, AR 72023
Clark County Community EducationArkadelphia, AR 71923
College of the OuachitasMalvern, AR 72104
Compassion Certified Nursing Assistant SchoolMagnolia, AR 71753
Health Care Training AssociatesMagnolia, AR 71753
Little Rock Job Corps CenterLittle Rock, AR 72209
M&M Education, Inc.Stuttgart, AR 72160
Northwest Technical InstituteSpringdale, AR 72764
Ozarka CollegeMelbourne, AR 72556
Perry County CNA Training CenterPerryville, AR 72126
Petra Allied Health, Inc.Fort Smith, AR 72903
Phillips Community CollegeDeWitt, AR 72042
River Valley Nurse Aide Training CenterOla, AR 72853
RSB Nursing Assistant Training ProgramJonesboro, AR 72401
Southern Arkansas University TechEast Camden, AR 71701
Texarkana Nursing AcademyTexarkana, AR 71854
University of Arkansas Community College at BatesvilleBatesville, AR 72501
White County Medical CenterSearcy, AR 72143

Evaluating a CNA Candidate

Update: Prometric no longer provides ARNACE and NAR.

The Department of Human Services has given that to D&SDT-Headmaster.

After training, you will then take ARNACE within 12 months of completing NATP.

The exam has two components: a knowledge test (written or oral) and a skills test.

The knowledge test will be in English and usually in the written format.

You’ll have 60 minutes to answer 75 multiple-choice questions.

If you have limited English literacy, you can take an oral test instead upon request.

In the oral test, the questions will be read to you over the headphones provided by the testing center.

Like in the written test, you’ll also answer 75 questions comprising of the following:

  • 67 questions are read orally
  • 8 questions without oral assistance to assess your English reading comprehension

Unfortunately, you won’t be allowed to bring a translation/bilingual dictionary to the exam.

Meanwhile, the skills test will have you perform three to four random nurse aide tasks within 30 minutes.

During the test, you’ll be rated and observed by a Registered Nurse (RN) or Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN).

Here’s the passing score you need to reach for each test:

  • Knowledge test – 76%
  • Skills test – 80% correct on all steps per task, with 100% on key tasks

Exam Results and Attempts

The D&SDT-Headmaster will post the official results of your exam online at their TestMaster Universe software.

You can view the results of ARNACE the day after your exam, after 7 PM CST.

If you pass, then you’ll be added to NAR and issued a state certificate.

If not, then you have two other attempts to take the test/s.

Should you still fail on the third attempt, then you’ll have to retrain in the NATP and enter a new testing cycle.

For employed nursing assistant trainees, you can still work at the nursing facility if you fail after three attempts.

The condition is you must re-enroll in the facility-based training program.

Exam Fees

You’ll have to pay the following to take ARNACE:

  • Knowledge test – written – $30
  • Knowledge test – oral – $40
  • Skills test – $90

Note that you’ll pay the same fees should you retake the test.

CNA Candidates Eligible to Take ARNACE

The Department of Human Services has deemed the following candidates eligible to take ARNACE:

  • Nursing assistants trained in approved non-facility and facility-based programs
  • Nursing students who completed the basic nursing course (e.g., Fundamentals of Nursing)
  • Home health aides completing federal training and/or testing requirements for HHA certification
  • Out-of-state nursing assistants trained but not yet tested or registered at the state of origin
  • Lapsed or inactive Arkansas-based CNAs
  • Veterans, military members, and their spouses

For veterans, military members, and their spouses, they have been granted special certification provisions.

To know about these provisions, it’s best to email or visit the OLTC or D&SDT-Headmaster website.

Potential Salary

Salary depends on several factors, such as:

  • Work location
  • Education
  • Experience
  • Skills

The more equipped you are with these factors, the more competitive your salary will be.

As of this writing, a CNA’s salary in Arkansas averages at about $29,000 annually.

Below is the average annual salary information for CNAs across the state.

Annual Salary Range:

Average Salary of CNAs in Arkansas

City NameSalary
Little Rock$29,313
Fort Smith$27,302
North Little Rock$29,313
Pine Bluff$28,227
Hot Springs$29,029
* Salary information based on the May 2022 Occupational Employment Statistics (OES) Survey for Nursing Assistants, OCC Code 31-1131, BLS.
* Employment conditions in your area may vary.

Regional Salary

RegionEmployedAvg. Annual SalaryAvg. Hourly PayTop 10% Annual SalaryBottom 10% Annual Salary
Fayetteville-Springdale-Rogers, AR-MO2,170$31,580$15.18$35,620$25,710
Fort Smith, AR-OK1,480$29,630$14.24$34,530$24,780
Hot Springs, AR790$28,640$13.77$33,290$25,790
Jonesboro, AR810$30,270$14.56$36,440$24,640
Little Rock-North Little Rock-Conway, AR4,480$31,390$15.09$34,860$28,070
Pine Bluff, AR440$28,960$13.92$33,860$24,980
* Salary information based on the May 2022 Occupational Employment Statistics (OES) Survey for Nursing Assistants, OCC Code 31-1131, BLS.
* Employment conditions in your area may vary.

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