CNA Classes in Wisconsin (Top Schools)

Wisconsin map

The Wisconsin Department of Health Services (WDHS) regulates the training and certification of Certified Nurse Aides (CNAs).

Per the department, you can become a CNA if you:

  • Complete a state-approved nurse aide training program (NATP)
  • Pass the Wisconsin Nurse Aide Competency Exam (WI NACE)

Taking on a CNA Training Program in Wisconsin

As a nurse aide, you’ll provide basic patient care to the state’s residents under the supervision of a senior nurse.

As such, you’ll need to acquire training from a state-approved NATP to meet the federal and state requirements.

In the program, you’ll spend 120 hours of training, including 32 hours of supervised clinical practice.

After completing NATP, you’ll have sufficient knowledge and demonstrable skills to work in a nursing facility.

Below, you’ll find some of the CNA NATPs approved by WDHS.

For a complete and updated list, visit the department’s website.

10 CNA Schools in Wisconsin

School NameAddress
Alliance Specialty Healthcare Services LLCMilwaukee, WI 53223-4840
Chippewa Valley Technical CollegeEau Claire, WI 54701
Dove Healthcare – WestEau Claire, WI 54703
Ingleside ManorMt. Horeb, WI 53572
J Johnson Education CenterMilwaukee, WI 53218
Madison CollegeMadison, WI 53704
Quality CNA Training - Fond Du LacFond Du Lac, WI 54935
Sheboygan Progressive Health ServicesSheboygan, WI 53081
Villa Maria Health and Rehab CenterHurley, WI 54534
Western Technical CollegeLa Crosse, WI 54601

Evaluating a CNA Candidate

After training, you can now sit for the WI NACE administered by D&SDT-Headmaster.

This exam assesses your knowledge and skills to safely provide nursing care to residents.

As such, WI NACE has two parts: a knowledge test (written or oral) and a skills test.

You must pass both tests within 12 months of completing NATP to successfully complete WI NACE.

Here are the important details you should know about each test:

Knowledge Test

  • It consists of 75 questions to be completed in 60 minutes.
  • Questions are selected from a WDHS-approved test plan in the following subject areas:
    • Safety
    • Communication
    • Infection control
    • Data collection
    • Personal care
    • Basic nurse skills
    • Mental health
    • Role and responsibility
    • Care impaired
    • Disease process
    • Resident rights
    • Aging process and restorative care
  • It’s primarily taken as a written test but can be an oral test upon request.
  • An oral test consists of 67 knowledge and 8 English reading comprehension questions.
  • You can bring a paperback translation dictionary subject to the inspection of the RN Test Observer/Knowledge Test Proctor at check-in.
  • Passing rate is 71%.

Skills Test

  • It evaluates your competency in performing nurse aide skill tasks.
  • You’ll perform three to four tasks, one of which is a mandatory first task involving handwashing:
    • Bedpan and output with required handwashing
    • Catheter care with required handwashing
    • Isolation gown and gloves – empty urinary drainage bag – with required handwashing
    • Perineal care of a female with required handwashing
  • You have 30 minutes to complete all tasks.
  • An RN Test Observer will evaluate your performance based on the scenarios given to you.
  • Anytime during the skill test, you can ask to do the following:
    • Have the scenarios repeated anytime during the skill test
    • Correct any mistakes you made
  • Passing rate is 80% on each task, with all key steps accounted for.

For comprehensive information, please read the Wisconsin CNA Candidate Handbook.

Exam Results

Usually, you can receive your exam results shortly after the test event.

You can check it online via the Wisconsin TestMaster Universe (WI TMU) Portal: https://wi.tmuniverse.com/.

If you pass both tests, you will be listed on the Wisconsin Nurse Aide Registry (NAR).

You can verify your listing on NAR by going to WI TMU Portal.

However, if you don’t pass either test, you must retake them.

D&SDT-Headmaster will provide retesting instructions on your score report that you can refer to.

Except for employed students, you have unlimited attempts to retake a test as long as your eligibility period hasn’t expired.

If, after a year, you still fail to pass, then you have to retrain in NATP to retake WI NACE.

For employed students in nursing facilities, your eligibility period is 120 days from the first day of training.

Exam Fees

You or your employer will pay the following exam fees:

  • Written knowledge and skills tests – $125
  • Oral knowledge and skills tests – $130
  • Written knowledge test only – $32
  • Oral knowledge test only – $37
  • Skills test only – $93

CNA Candidates Eligible for Certification

Now that you know the details for training and examination, let’s discuss who can get certified in Wisconsin.

So take a look at each one and follow the steps to the eligibility route that applies to you.

New Nurse Aides

You have completed a state-approved NATP in the last 12 months.

To be certified, you must pass WI NACE.

Nursing Students

To be certified, you must complete the following:

  • Courses that satisfy all nurse aide training requirements
  • Hands-on clinical experience providing assisted daily living care to residents
  • Submit the Student Nurse/Graduate Nurse Verification Form
  • Pass WI NACE

Nursing Graduates Who Hasn’t Taken the NCLEX-RN or NCLEX-PN

To be certified, you must complete the following:

  • Courses that satisfy all nurse aide training requirements
  • Hands-on clinical experience providing assisted daily living care to residents
  • Duly accomplished Student Nurse/Graduate Nurse Verification Form
  • Original copy of your school transcript
  • Pass WI NACE

Nursing Graduates Who Failed the NCLEX-RN or NCLEX-PN

To be certified, you must complete the following:

  • Courses that satisfy all nurse aide training requirements
  • Hands-on clinical experience providing assisted daily living care to residents
  • Duly accomplished Student Nurse/Graduate Nurse Verification Form
  • Original copy of your school transcript
  • A copy of the letter from the State Board of Nursing verifying that you failed the NCLEX
  • Pass WI NACE

RNs or LPNs

You’re a licensed nurse who currently has an active license and is in good standing with the State Board.

To be certified, you must complete the following:

  • Duly accomplished Student Nurse/Graduate Nurse Verification Form
  • A copy of your current license
  • Original copy of your school transcript

Military Veterans

To be certified, you must complete the following:

  • Military training, education, and experience that satisfy all nurse aide training requirements
  • At least 32 hours of hands-on clinical experience
  • Duly accomplished Military Training Verification Form
  • Additional documentation:
    • Service School Academic Reports
    • Certificates of Training for specific programs completed
    • Training document signed by your Unit’s Training Non-Commissioned Officer
    • A written narrative explaining how your military education, training, and experience has prepared you to be a nurse aide
  • Pass the WI NACE on the first attempt

Out-of-State CNAs

Candidates with Active Certification and In Good Standing

There are two conditions to this eligibility route.

  • You will be granted reciprocity and listed on NAR if you:
    • Completed a state-approved NATP of 75 hours, including 16 hours of clinical work
    • Passed NACE within one year of training completion that’s the same or substantially similar to WI NACE
  • You will have to take and pass WI NACE to be listed on NAR if you:
    • Completed a state-approved NATP of 75 hours, including 16 hours of clinical work, AND either:
      • Passed NACE within one year of training completion but the exam is NOT the same or substantially similar to WI NACE
      • Hadn’t taken the NACE within one year of training completion

To be certified or receive an approval to test (ATT), you must complete the following:

  • Duly accomplished Wisconsin Nurse Aide Registry – Out-of-State Registry Application Form
  • A copy of either your NATP’s certificate/diploma or official transcript/letter

Candidates with Inactive Certification but In Good Standing

You will have to take and pass WI NACE to be listed on NAR if you:

  • Completed a state-approved NATP of 75 hours, including 16 hours of clinical work
  • Passed NACE within one year of training completion that’s the same or substantially similar to WI NACE

To receive an ATT, you must complete the following:

  • Duly accomplished Wisconsin Nurse Aide Registry – Out-of-State Registry Application Form
  • A copy of either your NATP’s certificate/diploma or official transcript/letter

Potential Salary

A CNA’s salary in Wisconsin varies as it’s influenced by several factors, such as:

  • Education
  • Skill level
  • Working experience
  • Workplace location

As of this time, you can expect to receive an average annual salary of around $31,000 here.

Below you’ll find the salary information in the different cities across the state.

Annual Salary Range:
$28K
$31K
$34K

Average Salary of CNAs in Wisconsin

City NameSalary
Milwaukee$31,361
Madison$31,180
Green Bay$30,398
Kenosha$31,066
Racine$31,066
Appleton$30,404
Waukesha$31,242
Oshkosh$30,207
Eau Claire$29,328
West Allis$30,211
* Salary information last updated 2022

State FlagCNA Schools by City